Apple takes top spot from Nokia on AMR Research’s 2008 Supply Chain Top 25 list

AMR Research has released its Supply Chain Top 25 report for 2008, an annual ranking highlighting companies that display superior supply chain performance, capabilities, and leadership. This year, Apple traded places with Nokia to move into the top spot (AMR’s Top 25 for 2007). The analysis uses basic public data as a foundation—return on assets, inventory turns, and growth—and incorporates expert and peer assessments of the future supply chain potential of each company.

AMR Research’s Supply Chain Top 25 consistently outperforms the market. Last year, the average total return of the companies ranked in the 2007 Supply Chain Top was 17.89%, compared with returns of 6.43% for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and 3.53% for the S&P 500.

The Supply Chain Top 25 for 2008 is:

1. Apple
2. Nokia
3. Dell
4. Procter & Gamble
5. IBM
6. Wal-Mart Stores
7. Toyota Motor
8. Cisco Systems
9. Samsung Electronics
10. Anheuser-Busch
11. PepsiCo
12. Tesco
13. The Coca-Cola Company
14. Best Buy
15. Nike
16. SonyEricsson
17. Walt Disney
18. Hewlett-Packard
19. Johnson & Johnson
20. Schlumberger
21. Texas Instruments
22. Lockheed Martin
23. Johnson Controls
24. Royal Ahold
25. Publix Super Markets

“With companies such as Apple, Disney, and Nike securing their ranks on the Supply Chain Top 25 this year, a new manufacturing model emerges,” said Kevin O’Marah, chief strategist at AMR Research, in the press release. “The old model, relying exclusively on products or services, is increasingly being replaced by a content economy that builds and delivers value with ideas.”

“With its introduction of the iPhone, Apple could have stumbled meeting demand or failed on quality. It did neither,” AMR’s report states. “Behind-the-scenes moves like tying up essential components well in advance and upgrading basic information systems have enabled Apple to handle the demands of its rabid fan base without having to fall back on their forgiveness for mistakes.”

AMR Research is the No. 1 research firm focused on the intersection of business processes with value chain and enterprise technologies. Founded in 1986, AMR Research provides subscription advisory services and peer networking opportunities to operations and IT executives in the consumer products, life sciences, manufacturing, and retail sectors.

More info about AMR Research’s Supply Chain Top 25 report can be found here.

Source: AMR Research

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Mike” for the heads up.]


  1. I must admit that to any sad Apple hater stumbling into MDN, it must be very painful. Bit like falling into a mix of brambles and stinging nettles really.

    No wonder the likes of He he, or is it He he he, don’t stay around long…

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  2. While Apple has moved from #2 to #1, Dell is at #3. Still there? Moved there? Doesn’t really matter that much, now, does it? They are ahead of IBM, Toyota, Cisco and Disney. Behind Apple, to be sure, but ahead of some solid companies.
    Have we been mistaken in our vilification of that industry giant? #3! Ahead of HP, back at #18! Perhaps He he had a point? Not that Apple does not belong at this pinnacle, but that the methodology is, perhaps, somehow flawed?

  3. DLMeyer,

    This is a ranking of companies’ supply chain capabilities which has always been Dell’s (sole) strong point.

    Think back 10 years. That Apple is #1 on this list is nothing short of a miracle.

  4. @he he

    It would truly depend on who is doing the analysis. If you look at any company that does this type of research, not all of them do an analysis of variations. While I do agree with you that ANOVA is very important, it would highly depend on what you are trying to measure. The company in question does provide their metrics and their methodologies.

    As for your comment regarding the left-hand side of the curve, I find your comment to be disingenuous. Without sounding facetious and air of egotistic snottiness, you might want to further elucidate the masses to allow us to see your point of view.

    You might want to also consider the book “How to lie with statistics” as a precursor in considering how to interpret the numbers presented by the company. Anyone can come up with numbers and make it sound good. However, as this company did, they provided their metrics and methodology. The rest is up to us to whether accept or deny the findings.

  5. The problems with Dell are not in their supply chain, but rather in their supply. The products that they efficiently deliver are of poor quality and have frustrated too many, too much and too often. They have no margins because there is little demand for less than mediocre computers in shiny cases. Michael Dell built his empire on a masterful supply chain, not a great machine.

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