…especially if you’re a manufacturer in Canada.The strong US dollar creates some interesting situations for Canadian manufacturers who export to the US (or any other country). With a de-valued Canadian dollar, our manufactured goods may cost less for international buyers, but what if these same products consist of largely US materials and components? Hopefully, the added cost of US components doesn’t significantly affect the end product’s cost, but it’s still in any manufacturer’s best interest to control these component costs as much as possible. We import most of our goods from the US for our Canadian customers. Over the past year, we’ve seen the cost of components increase by nearly 45%, and that’s solely due to the exchange difference. As you can imagine, this poses a major challenge for manufacturers who strive to remain competitive in their markets. The good news is that there are some very easy ways to combat these increases, and even remove them completely.
Buy in USDThe easiest and most obvious way to take the exchange cost out of the equation is to trade in the same currency. If you have a US Dollar bank account, you can buy in USD. We have many customers who pay in USD for their orders. This method works very well especially when your customers pay you in USD as well, but at the very least you can be sure that you’re always paying the most current rate.
Dollar Cost AveragingBuy low! Sell high! Buying USD when you think the rate is about to climb is a good way to try and stay ahead of any increases. You may not get the lowest exchange rate all the time, but if you buy most of your US currency when the rates are “good”, you can usually save a few basis points over the long term. If you’re not confident in your ability to exchange currency, or if you don’t have time to watch the markets, that’s okay! There are experts who can help you with that. If you don’t already deal with any of the Currency Exchange companies in your area, you should consider reaching out to them. They have a good sense of the markets and will give you a heads up when it’s the best time to make a currency trade.
Take Advantage of DiscountsIf you could save 2% just by paying your invoice within 10 days, would you do it? Studies have shown that early payment discounts are a great way to reduce costs in the long term and ultimately earn you far more than the 2% you save immediately. If your vendors don’t offer early payment discounts like 2%10/N30, ask them about it! Another form of discount that many companies overlook is the Quantity Pricing discounts, or Bulk Pricing. If you’re a manufacturer, you’re likely very familiar with bulk pricing and how it can save you money. A good vendor will typically tell you about any available discounts and will alert you when it makes sense to buy just a few more to qualify for huge savings. Even if it means buying less frequently, volume pricing can be a great benefit.
Automate Your Regular Purchases with Blanket OrdersBlanket Order is a bulk quantity order with scheduled releases for up to a year from the order date. Blanket orders are great for companies who place consistent, repetitive orders. They’re also beneficial because they allow you to guarantee delivery and pricing for a long period of time, which frees you up for other things that may be more urgent and time-sensitive. Blanket orders give us the ability to purchase at larger quantities too, which means we can pass along those savings to you.
..or use any combination of the above!Every manufacturer is different and it may not be possible to take advantage of all of these options. You might not be sure if any of them are right for you. We can help with that. We can tell you very quickly if you might benefit from consolidating orders into larger, less frequent orders. We can show you the benefit of buying in USD, and we can discuss how blanket orders might help your bottom line. If none of these options seem right for you, then we’ll just carry on giving you the best possible pricing and all of the technical support we can give you. If you would like us to review your purchase history and give you some feedback about how we can help reduce your costs, please use our Contact Form to reach us! Thanks for visiting us! We hope to hear from you soon!
Steeves Agencies is proud to support the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association!
We’re curious to see how far-reaching this ad is and who is reading it! Send us a picture of you reading the magazine (maybe checking out page 11) and we’ll feature your photo right here on our website!
The CME does a lot of great work to help develop the manufacturing sector in Canada and works hard to make Canada a leader in manufacturing innovation and efficiency. With their lean manufacturing initiatives, member-driven committees and their trade development programs, the CME is an amazing organization. If you’re not a member, check them out!
Steeves Agencies is a Canadian-owned distributor of specialty access hardware, and we’ve been serving Canadian manufacturers for over 30 years. We’re the hardware specialists! Call us today or use our Contact Form to reach us.
Steeves Agencies is a 100% Canadian-owned family business, and we’ve been serving Original Equipment Manufacturers in Canada for over 30 years. We carry a range of industrial hardware that’s used in trucks, buses, boats (and ships!), airplanes, RV’s, campers, metal boxes, and so much more.
Call us today or use our Contact Form to reach us. We’re here to help!
Not all Stainless Steel is created equal. The Stainless Steel in your barbecue, for example, isn’t the same alloy that would be used in medical instruments or in your kitchen cutlery. There are a number of different alloys of Stainless, which may or may not include chromium, nickel, and molybdenum.
Since stainless steel resists corrosion, maintains its strength at high temperatures and is easily maintained, it is widely used in items such as automotive and food processing products, as well as medical and health equipment. There are MANY grades of stainless steel, but the most common US grades of stainless steel are:
The most commonly specified austenitic (chromium-nickel stainless class) stainless steel, accounting for more than half of the stainless steel produced in the world. 304 Stainless is also known as 18/8 for its composition of 18% chromium and 8% nickel.This grade withstands ordinary corrosion in architecture, is durable in typical food processing environments, and resists most chemicals. Type 304 is available in virtually all product forms and finishes. Most of the hinges, latches, and other products that are listed as “Stainless Steel” on our website are 304 Stainless.
Austenitic (chromium-nickel stainless class) stainless steel containing 2%-3% molybdenum (whereas 304 has none). The inclusion of molybdenum gives 316 greater resistance to various forms of deterioration. Some manufacturers specify 316 stainless in applications where the environment is particularly corrosive. Some continuous and butt hinges and a select few latches we supply are available in 316 Stainless.
Ferritic (plain chromium stainless category) stainless steel is suitable for high temperatures. This grade has the lowest chromium content of all stainless steels and thus is the least expensive.
The most widely used martensitic (plain chromium stainless class with exceptional strength) stainless steel, featuring the high level of strength conferred by the martensitics. It is a low-cost, heat-treatable grade suitable for non-severe corrosion applications.
The most widely used ferritic (plain chromium stainless category) stainless steel, offering general-purpose corrosion resistance, often in decorative applications.
Some manufacturers reduce the cost by using a lower grade of stainless steel, which means your product won’t have the same resistance to corrosion that you’re expecting. If your current supplier can’t (or won’t) provide the material certifications or if you notice that your “stainless” latches are showing signs of rusting or oxidation, maybe we should talk.
Use our Contact Form to reach us and we’ll set up a time to meet, either on the phone or in person.