Addressing EU bearing stockpiling

Business 01-05-2019

SMB Bearings, has increased its capacity from 1.5 million bearings to 2.6 million bearings at its Oxfordshire warehouse. The increase in capacity has been carefully planned to alleviate the pressures associated with European customers stockpiling bearings ahead of predicted Brexit shortages.

The specialist distributor, which exports 40 per cent of its bearings to the European Union (EU), is feeling the effect of Brexit fear among its customers. Manufacturers are stockpiling integral parts and components at the highest levels on record for a major advanced economy, as reported by The Guardian earlier this year. Major companies have built up stock levels that ensure they can continue production if international trade is restricted.

SMB Bearings has increased its bearing inventory by 73 per cent, ensuring it is as prepared as it can be to supply European customers. Requiring changes to the facilities warehouse shelving structure, this increase has not happened overnight, but rather is the result of months of preparation and planning for market volatility.

“We are already taking orders for next autumn,” explained Chris Johnson, managing director of SMB Bearings. “While a mass Armageddon of bearing supply after Brexit is unlikely, we can’t blame our customers for wanting to build reserves for their own production lines and avoid potential delays.

“As a business, we’re used to riding the waves of bearing sales booms. We’ve seen a similar spike in demand for thin section precision bearings, with the increase in robotics manufacturing. As European customers worry about a mass shortage after Brexit, our extensive stock will act as a buffer, to ensure they can still have access to bearings in their supply chain.”

In addition to this inventory increase, SMB Bearings is currently in the process of achieving Authorised Economic Operator for Customs (AEOC) status, which will enable more efficient imports and exports. The certificate reflects SMB Bearing’s secure and compliant processes for delivery and shipping.

More information on SMB Bearings’ product offering can be found on the company’s website. Alternatively, if you have any concerns about how Brexit will impact your bearing supply, you can speak to the SMB Bearings team directly on +44 (0) 1993 842 555.

Our determination to remain specialised gives us a high level of product knowledge, providing bearing and lubrication solutions to existing or potential customers, whether individuals or large corporations. We don’t just sell bearings, we help to solve your problems. - Chris Johnson, managing director of SMB Bearings.