Kent International

Kent Bikes has the enforceable contract they need and kids everywhere get the bike they always wanted.

The Challenge

Is there anything scarier than a bicycle traffic jam in China? For Kent International, an importer and one of the largest bike companies in the world, seeing their containers get jammed up has serious ramifications. The company’s cargo needs to be moved on schedule or factories in China can back-up all the way to the assembly line, resulting in increased costs and some very valuable clients being dissatisfied.

Kent’s high profile clients—Walmart, Target, Amazon and Academy just to name a few—demand that the hottest and best bikes be in stock when their customers are ready to ride. Kent’s reputation and client relationships are built on the bike company’s ability to deliver. But that ability has been challenged in recent years as the importer has battled with ocean carriers for reliable services and for carriers to respect the long-term contracts they jointly agree to. The non-binding nature of these contracts means their containers can be delayed without consequence, which puts Kent in a bind with its demanding clients.

The NYSHEX Solution

Kids everywhere just want to ride their bicycles, and Kent just wants a solid enforceable contract they can rely on. Through the NYSHEX Forward™ contract, NYSHEX has satisfied on both these fronts. NYSHEX has even enabled Kent to go a step further. By coordinating with their origin office and manufacturer, Kent and NYSHEX identified a fixed volume amount they wanted to allocate to the exchange on a weekly basis. That allows Kent to bring a higher level of certainty to their supply chain than they’ve ever had before.

NYSHEX provides Kent with the reliability they demand—and it’s also helped them discover new flexibility that’s streamlining their contracting process. Marilyn Liu, Kent’s shipping and logistics representative said, “What I like about NYSHEX is it gives me a list of options with different shipping companies and different schedules. So if I have two containers from Shanghai and they’re ready to go in two weeks, I can just go online and click origin, container type and destination. I will see ocean freight and available space. I don’t need to make any calls—any email—I don’t even negotiate. If I think the price is okay, I just book it. I think this is super cool.”

Kent's Results

With the NYSHEX Forward™ contract, Kent now has solid contracts that they know will be honored. NYSHEX has removed the worry about their source of supply. It’s also enabled them to avoid having to resort to expensive airfreight as a last resort. On the exchange, they can buy contracts from two weeks to six months out, which gives them a flexible, guaranteed option to meet demand. Having found a proven solution for contract enforceability, Kent has now made NYSHEX Forward contracts part of their yearly planning to supplement to their long-term service agreements and spot buys.

The beauty of NYSHEX is that we have solid contracts that will be signed electronically and we no longer have to worry about the source of supply. That is a real game changer for us and for the industry.
Arnold Kamler
CEO & Chairman of the Board


Top Takeaways


Enforceable contracts add reliability to supply chain


Digital contracting simplifies and speeds up the RFQ process


Ability to buy contracts two weeks to six months out provides flexibility

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