Kawasaki Announces Major Distribution Change

Kawasaki Announces Major Distribution Change through UPS partnership.

Kawasaki Motors Corp., U.S.A. Engine and Power Products Division will initiate a new storage and distribution system for its parts, accessories, handheld power products and engines. The company announced it will partner with UPS to consolidate and streamline all elements of the distribution business that support its dealers.

Kawasaki’s solution to its sales growth and an expanding dealer network, coupled with a need to provide efficient, timely deliveries that satisfy end-users was a logical step given the reputation of UPS.

“UPS is a recognized leader in its industry, and the synergies between its systems and Kawasaki’s needs in the field are significant,” said Rodger Howe, Director of Operations at Kawasaki.

According to Howe, the new system, which will begin operations once all of the existing inventory is transferred to the UPS facilities in Hebron, KY, and Mira Loma, CA, in late August, will provide substantial benefits to the company’s dealers. Nearly 1.5 million units are expected to be warehoused at the start of the relationship.

“We’re constantly seeking new ways to improve on our service levels to dealers and this process will substantially shorten the time to get delivered items from the loading dock into our warehouse system,” said Howe.

According to Howe, UPS has demonstrated how the new arrangement can compact the process to as little as 24 hours.

The company will be able to take advantage of a parts planning tool from Baxter Planning Systems that is fully integrated into the UPS system. The software will enhance its sales forecasting, optimize stock planning and make it easier to manage seasonal spikes in activity.

“The new solution will provide significant value to Kawasaki's dealers," said Jeff Degen, director of UPS's automotive marketing group. “By leveraging UPS's distribution services and worldwide transportation network, Kawasaki will improve its supply chain's efficiency and simplify the process of managing and tracking inventory.”

Kawasaki has used three U.S. warehouses to support distribution; Ontario, CA, Atlanta, GA, and Grand Rapids, MI. Those warehouses will continue to provide storage and distribution needs for Kawasaki’s Consumer Products group.