MES Diversifies Geographical Presence to Meet Customers’ Needs

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MES attributes consistent growth to following customers to where they are.

Over the last 7 years, MES has achieved a consistent yearly sales growth of over 60% a year. MES President Hiten Shah attributes this growth to its adherence to core values: Creating win-win situations for the customers, creating a challenging and exciting work environment for the team members, and developing quality suppliers around the world.

MES’s strength comes from relentlessly diversifying the industries served, the customer base, the geographical footprint, the sourcing strategy, and the commodity reach.

Diversifying Industries

Many companies and industries gain a lot by having a single focus. An example is iPhones (many would hate to pick from 20 different options). However, in engineered commodities, breadth of industry knowledge can really help the company gain deeper quality, engineering, and supply chain expertise. This, in turn, can help the company be a better supply chain partner for its customers. That is the philosophy behind MES’s relentless push in diversifying the industries it serves. While industrial lighting continues to be the strength, MES is successfully expanding its reach into agricultural equipment, automotive, medical, electronics, and heavy equipment.

Diversifying the industry focus is not the same as trying to jump into new industries to see what sticks. MES is successful in its industry diversification effort because there are set processes the company follows before committing to something new. Shah notes, “MES does considerable industry research and competitor intelligence evaluation ahead of time. We also base our decisions on how fast we can hire an expert in a specific industry—either in sales or in a sourcing role.” Shah goes on to note that, for example, in the case of investment casting, MES did not try to target the industry until they had hired a Senior Investment Casting Account Manager. Similarly, the company hired iron casting engineers in India and China before marketing and gaining business in that commodity.

MES continues to invest in world-class quality and supply chain systems to meet automotive requirements. These help them to be the “best practices supplier” in other industries as well. Overall, having team members who understand the quality expectations, commercial issues, and application requirements helps MES be a better engineering and supply chain partner to its customers.

Diversifying Locations

MES chooses its locations based on three distinct strategies:

1. MES warehousing locations must be within 3-5 days of its customers
2. MES engineers should be within 4-8 hours of any supplier location
3. MES suppliers can be located anywhere as long as they offer the best combination of cost, quality, and delivery metrics. The company currently sources from China, India, Vietnam, Mexico, and Taiwan and continues to look for new suppliers globally.

Shah notes, “Our initial leaders have been the key to MES’s sourcing growth. We have built our teams around those key leaders and where they are located.”

As far as customers are concerned, MES’s first expansion outside Ohio happened when they learned that one of their large customers was moving a big part of their business down to Mexico. Further growth in California, Houston, Tijuana, Dominican Republic, and Monterrey took place to support their growing customer base. Their focus on making sure that inventory is available within 3-5 days for customers has brought them new opportunities.

MES has been able to develop multiple locations for sourcing and customer warehousing thanks to its investment in IT and ERP systems (SAP and in-house developed MESH automation portal). These systems make key information about parts, pricing, quality, inventory, and logistics readily available globally so team members can make informed decisions and remain flexible around customers’ needs.

By developing diversified warehousing and sourcing locations, MES is able to deliver world class products to growing number of automotive, lighting, electrical, agricultural and other industrial customers. They are able to maintain impeccable service and best-in-class inventory, on-time delivery, and quality metrics.

Company Contact:

Carol Kwong, Marketing Analyst
625 Bear Run Lane
Lewis Center, OH 43035 USA

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Marjorie Clayman
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