Oliver Chapman, CEO of OCI - UK's No.1 Fastest Growing Company
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What permanently higher interest rates mean for the supply chain

The CEO of supply chain experts OCI comments on the supply chain implications of permanently higher interest rates

Interest rates may be close to peaking and will probably fall, but there are reasons to believe that we are entering a period in which rates will be consistently higher than during the pre-Covid era. Oliver Chapman, CEO of supply chain specialists OCI, comments on the supply chain implications of permanently higher interest rates.

“There are good reasons to believe inflation is peaking across much of the World, with US month-on-month inflation falling below zero in December.

“Last year, OCI consistently predicted sharp falls in inflation in 2023 partly due to supply chain adjustments. It is clear that inflation is likely to fall this year, but there are reasons to believe that interest rates might need to stay at higher than pre-Covid levels to keep inflation in check. Fed Chair Jerome Powell recently echoed these sentiments.

“One of the reasons for consistently low inflation during the last two decades was what former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke called the global savings glut. However, there are reasons to believe this may be reversing, for example, a slowdown in the Chinese economy and demographic changes across the World.

“Mr Powell talked about an “extraordinarily strong” labour market. Demographic changes leading to a fall in the working-age population relative to the retired population give reasons to think that the labour market will stay strong throughout this decade.

“The implications for the supply chain are important. Higher interest rates mean cash becomes a more important driver of supply chain considerations.

“The proverbial slow boat from China means cash is tied up while stock is transported, and this might be prohibitively expensive with higher interest rates.

“We believe that in an era of higher interest rates, the supply chain will focus more on manufacturing goods closer to the point of consumption.

“This means more local and near local manufacturing— for example, the rising importance of Poland and Mexico as manufacturering centres for Europe and the US, respectively.

“We may also see a surge in manufacturing activity even closer to home. This trend will also be supported by advances in automation which means labour costs are becoming a less significant consideration in selecting locations for manufacturing.

Oliver Chapman, CEO of OCI

About OCI:

OCI is the world’s first in commercial process outsourcing. It redesigns supply chains for organisations, to drive growth.

Working capital cycles are at their longest ever, restricting businesses’ potential for growth.

OCI harnesses technology and commercial process solutions to free working capital from supply chains.


OCI’s unique approach eases financial constraints, making businesses more agile, accelerating their growth.

Editor's note:

*According to the recent FT 1000 fastest-growing companies, OCI is the No.1 fastest-growing company in the UK, and the 3rd fastest-growing company in Europe.

The FT 1000 is the result of a joint initiative by the Financial Times and Statista, which conducted months of research, public calls for participation, intensive database research, and directly contacted tens of thousands of companies. In the end, it identified outstanding companies among millions of European enterprises.

Oliver Chapman is available for interviews and comments.


FT 1000: the sixth annual list of Europe’s fastest-growing companies - https://on.ft.com/35ceokx via @FT

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