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EMC forms purchasing co-op for manufacturers

A group of Canadian manufacturers have formed a purchasing co-operative that will allow members to leverage their buying power for products commonly used in plants.


December 21, 2010
by PLANT STAFF

Products handled by the purchasing co-op could range from sandpaper to specialized high quality steel and resin.

Photo: iStockphoto

LONDON, Ont.: A group of Canadian manufacturers have formed a purchasing co-operative that will allow members to leverage their buying power for products commonly used in plants.

The EMC Purchasing Co-operative Ltd., an Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium of Canada (EMC) initiative, is separately incorporated and owned by the participating member manufacturers.

“Purchasing has become more and more complex and the co-op is another tool to help manufacturers compete on the world stage, through strategic collaboration,” said Al Diggins, EMC’s president and general manager.

EMC said a significant amount manufacturing purchases are common with all companies, creating opportunities for companies to work together more strategically.

“As you can imagine, the list is almost infinite,” said Brian Chisholm, general manager of the London, Ont.-based EMC Purchasing Co-Operative. “The key is that we must bring value to that purchasing process. The products could range from a package of sandpaper or a pair of pliers, to specialized high quality steel and resin.”

There will be specific product priorities (determined by the members) as well.  Already identified are products pertaining to outdoor sign manufacturing, steel and MRO. EMC said strategic purchasing team committees are being assembled to sort through the needs and vet potential preferred vendors.

So far there are more than 20 inaugural members and more than 150 companies have expressed interest, but there will be no limit set on membership.

“The more companies we have signed up, the greater the leverage we will have,” said Chisholm.

EMC expects this group’s buying power to eventually be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Chisholm said a purchasing team of three to five members from across Canada with significant product knowledge and purchasing experience will be assembled for each product category. “The members help make the deals with the suppliers, facilitated by the EMC Purchasing Co-op team. A preferred supplier will then be chosen based on the ability to supply product most efficiently in terms of quality, service and of course, price.”

He noted buying groups and purchasing co-ops have been used successfully in most retail and distribution sectors. “We are simply bringing this proven model in a unique way to the Canadian manufacturing sector.”

EMC said companies interested in participating in this initiative should contact the co-op immediately. E-mail Ian Gray, executive director at igray@emcpurchasing.coop or Brian Chisholm, general manager, at bchisholm@emcpurchasing.coop.
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