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Supply Chain by the Numbers

- Aug, 12, 2021

  Supply Chain by the Numbers for Aug. 12, 2021

Amid Rising Labor Costs, Walmart DC Workers can Get Big Bonuses; Massive Amazon Air Hub Opens; Judge Rule Swift did not Poach CRST Driver; Who will Win Kansas City Southern Bid, as CP Ups Price



That is how much in weekly bonus some Walmart distribution centers workers can earn under a new program launched this month, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal. For example, some Walmart DC workers have been offered $1,000 over four weeks for not skipping any scheduled shifts during the second half of the summer. The program is scheduled to continue at least through Walmart’s fiscal year at the majority of store replenishment and ecommerce DCs, almost 200 in total in the US. Walmart hopes to retain workers to support coming peak season volumes running through its DCs. After many years of stagnant wage growth, pay for warehouse workers has been on the rise in the past three years and seems likely to keep rising, especially in a period of it appears to be high overall inflation. Amazon increased pay for its FC workers earlier this year, on top of the $15 per hour minimum wage it has adopted earlier, and currently pays $1000 signing bonuses at many sites.

 3 Millon

That is how many square feet of logistics space will be created across seven planned buildings at the Amazon Prime air hub at the Cincinnati airport, which officially opened for business this week. The Cincinnati airport is actually located in Northern Kentucky. Notable among all that space is an 800,000-square-foot sortation building equipped with robots and many miles of interlinked conveyors. The facility will serve as Amazon’s largest air hub, and is expected to handle as many as 200 cargo flights per day. It will operate across an amazing 600 acres, and soon employ 2000 people. It will include an expansive new tarmac with parking for about 100 planes. When the hub was announced a few years back, Amazon said it would take $1.5 million to develop. Amazon plans to install a solar rooftop on the building in the next year that will feed energy directly into the electrical grid of the local community. Of course, Amazon supplier and rival UPS has its US air hub just down the road in Louisville.



$31 Million10

That is the new bid this week by Canadian Pacific railroad for Kansas City Southern, upping its previous offer of $25 billion it submitted in March, only to be outbid a little more than a month later by Canadian National, which proposed $33.6 billion. Kansas City Southern then spurned the Canadian Pacific offer said it would work finalize the deal with Canadian National, and in fact a shareholder vote to approve the deal is scheduled for Aug. 19. Now it is not clear what will happen. Canadian Pacific has argued that its combination with KCS will get past US regulators, while an acquisition by Canadian National may be rejected by US rail regulator the Surface Transportation Board over concerns the two railroads already serve many of the same shippers and have numerous overlapping routes in the Midwest and South.




That’s about how many truck drivers from carrier CRST were allegedly “poached” by rival Swift Knight Transportation (then just Swift), according a lawsuit initially filed by CRST in 2017. Then, CRST claimed that in 2016 Swift began hiring CRST drivers at higher pay rates, even after receiving notice from CRST that they were under contract. CRST initially won a $6 million judgement. But a unanimous three-judge panel of the 8th US Circuit Court of Appeals this week said non-compete agreements in CRST drivers' contracts were only valid as long as they owed the company money for training them, and there was no proof that they had not fulfilled those obligations before they began driving for Swift. As a result, the court said, CRST could not show that Swift intentionally interfered with those agreements by luring away the drivers. Like quite a few trucking companies, CRST advances the cost of training and obtaining commercial drivers licenses to drivers in exchange for their agreement to work for the company for up to ten months. The agreements also include non-compete clauses that terminate once the full reimbursements are made.

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