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> ERA Quick Connections – March V1

March 2020, Volume 1

ERA’s Quick Connections is issued twice a month. ERA invites you to share recent newsworthy items and calendar dates with your fellow members at

Manufacturing Data Reports

Manufacturing data reports from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) are released on or about the first of every month and can be accessed at ISM. The March 2 report says economic activity in the manufacturing sector grew in February, and the overall economy grew for the 130th consecutive month. Also, of the 18 manufacturing industries included in the report, the computer and electronic products sector was one of 14 reporting growth in February.

Industry News

As the world mobilizes to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus, uncertainty abounds. One thing is clear, however: the COVID-19 outbreak underscores the need for business and society to be resilient and prepared — qualities that will be in demand long after public health has been restored. Read more at BCG.

The total security appliance market experienced positive unit shipment and revenue growth in the fourth quarter of 2019 (4Q19), according to IDC. Worldwide revenue increased 9.4 percent year over year in 4Q19 to $4.8 billion. Unit shipments experienced similar growth, increasing 21.1 percent year over year to nearly 1.3 million units. Read more at BusinessWire.

The smartphone supply chain is continuing to feel the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak and is expected to decline 3.5 percent in 2020. TrendForce anticipates that, assuming the outbreak can be contained by the end of the second quarter, the demand for smartphones will go into a noticeable upswing in the second half of 2020. Read more at Evertiq.

With financial markets in turmoil, Dr. Jonathan Owens, logistics expert from the University of Salford Business School, looks at why the coronavirus is having such a huge impact on business and what can be done to mitigate the risks. Read more at eBom.

ERA News

In an abundance of caution due to the outbreak of the coronavirus, ERA recommends that all sales representatives avoid any non-essential, work-related or personal travel until further notice. During this time, we encourage you to utilize alternative means of servicing customers, including telephone, electronic communications, or video conferencing. Read more at ERA.

More than 400 reps, manufacturers, distributors and service providers attended ERA’s 2020 Conference in Austin, Texas, last month. All 2020 ERA Conference attendees and ERA Members can now access the post-conference files from this year’s program. To access the post-conference files look for an email from the ERA Conference Committee that contains your password and was sent on March 3 and 9.

ERA produced a series of videos featuring interviews with notable industry manufacturers and distributors who discussed the value of the rep model; the technical knowhow and product knowledge manufacturers’ reps have; and the relationship they bring to solidify the connection between manufacturer, distributors and customers. Watch the videos at ERAVideoLibrary.

The next free ERA Teleforum will be held on March 26, 2020, at 4 p.m. EST. The topic “Delivering a Powerful Supply Chain Customer Experience in Today’s Complex Environment,” will be presented by Nicki Weiss of Saleswise and co-facilitators Jacob Harris of Arrow Electronics, Tim Resker of Coto Technology and Greg Warren of Brandel Stephens. Register at ERATeleforums.

The following ERA awards were presented at the 2020 ERA Conference in February:

For Your Calendar

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