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Case Study Martin-Pullin Bicycle Corporation Martin-Pullin Bicycle Corp. (MPBC), located in Dallas, is a wholesale distributor of bicycles and bicycle parts. Formed in 1981 by cousins Ray Martin and Jim Pullin, the firm’s primary retail outlets are located within a 400-mile radius of the distribution center. These retail outlets receive their orders from Martin-Pullin within two days after notifying the distribution center, provided that the stock is available. However, if an order is not fulfilled by the company, no backorder is placed; the retailers arrange to get their shipment from other distributors, and MPBC loses that amount of business. 

Demands for Air Wing Model 

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MONTH 2014 2015 FORECAST FOR 2016 

January  6  7  8 

February  12  14  15 

March  24  27  31 

April  46  53  59 

May  75  86  97 

June  47  54  60 

July 30  34  39 

August  18  21  24 

September  13  15  16 

October  12  13  15 

November  22  25  28 

December  38  42  47 

Total  343  391  439 

The company distributes a wide variety of bicycles. The most popular model, and the major source of revenue for the company, is the AirWing. MPBC receives all the models from a single manufacturer overseas, and shipment takes as long as four weeks from the time an order is placed. With the cost of communication, paperwork, and customs clearance included, MPBC estimates that each time an order is placed, it incurs a cost of $65. The purchase price paid by MPBC, per bicycle, is roughly 60% of the suggested retail price for all the styles available, and the inventory carrying cost is 1% per month (12% per year) of the purchase price paid by MPBC. The retail price (paid by the customers) for the AirWing is $170 per bicycle.

MPBC is interested in making an inventory plan for 2016. The firm wants to maintain a 95% service level with its customers to minimize the losses on the lost orders. The data collected for the past two years are summarized in the accompanying table. A forecast for AirWing model sales in 2016 has been developed and will be used to make an inventory plan for MPBC. 

Discussion Questions 

1. Develop an inventory plan to help MPBC. 

2. Discuss ROPs and total costs. 

3. How can you address demand that is not at the level of the planning horizon?

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