Apple’s Incredible Supply Chain: Inventory Turn Over Every 5 Days

In a recent publication by The Atlantic (via Gartner), another interesting fact about Apple’s amazing ecosystem has been pointed out, that explains a part of why Apple has been consistently ranked as having the best supply chain in the world. According to the report, Apple turns over its inventory once every five days which is pretty extraordinary for a company that sells millions of products all over the world. The only other company that turns over its products faster is McDonald’s, who is actually selling burgers and fries and not iPhones and iPads.

According to the report:

Fascinatingly, if you read about that inventory turn metric, you will find things like this: “Although results vary by industry, typical manufacturing companies may have 6-8 inventory turns per year. High volume/low margin companies (like grocery stores) may have 12 or more inventory turns per year or more.”

So a typical company in manufacturing might do 8 inventory turns. Samsung does 17. Dell, which practically invented hardcore electronics supply chain management, does 36. Apple is doing 74!

Dell and Samsung rank two and three in Apple’s category, turning over their inventory roughly once every 10 and 21 days respectively.