Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

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About Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

4 Strategic Challenges Middle Market Manufacturing Companies Must Face

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

Middle Market Manufacturing

Those of us in manufacturing in the 1980’s saw the rapid adoption of Toyota’s lean approach. Concepts like Just in Time (JIT) and Continuous Flow Manufacturing (CFM) drove positive results . So did the broad involvement of line and staff personnel and rapid metric monitoring.

Topics: Featured, Management, Content Type

Beyond cost savings: avoiding heavy penalties

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

In a previous article, I looked at 10 areas where your business could save money.

4 Steps to Protect your Company During Economic Downturn

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

Last year, I wrote a post recommending some defensive moves to protect annual profits and cash retention as economic worries intensified. I followed it up with an article on how to establish a protective profit buffer with 10 cost saving moves

Since that time, world economic prospects have turned down sharply. China reflects substantially worsening growth prospects. Commodities prices are declining. Oil prices in particular are in free fall, and energy investment and employment have been heavily curtailed. The stock markets have recently been trounced, with China down 20% and US and other western countries with double digit losses. 

It is certainly time to take defensive moves, and at the very least develop a contingency plan. This time I went back to my fellow partners for a more comprehensive response to the prospective downturn. Here are four steps they recommended for a contingency plan.

Topics: Business Operations

Reducing Freight Costs

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

In a prior blog post, we looked at 10 areas your business could save money. We looked at four of them in a little more depth: legal, banking, insurance, and audit expense reductions. Now we turn our focus to freight costs. The term “freight” includes the following operating characteristics: inbound and outbound, domestic and international, and all shipment sizes from an envelope to a full container.

Topics: Accounting & Finance

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The 25% Approach: Audit Fees

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

This is the final article in a series about reducing costs by shopping around for new service providers . So far we've looked at cutting costs from legal , banking and insurance . In all these areas, the target has been to reduce costs by over 25%, and to sustain that reduction for several years. I have also noted the importance of CEO support for these cost-saving initiatives. This is crucial because service providers tend to have champions within the company.

Topics: Accounting & Finance

10 Areas Your Business Could Save Money

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

The general rule of business is to control costs, increase revenues, and maximize profit. Simple, but difficult to implement in weak or recovering economic times, such as we are experiencing now in the United States. As revenues increase, the tendency of businesses is to add workers, buy new technology, and increase inventories. However, many companies grow themselves out of business by diverting cash into fixed assets and inventory investments in anticipation of expanding sales.

Topics: Accounting & Finance

The 25% Approach: Insurance Premiums

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

So far in our series on reducing service costs, I've addressed how to reduce legal fees and bank charges. This process is very different from getting annual quotes from materials providers. That's because service providers build intellectual capital over years of working together. Unless their fees are exorbitant, this knowledge makes it worthwhile to continue working with them .

Topics: Featured, Management

The 25% Approach: Bank Transaction Charges

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

We're in a series called The 25% Approach, focused on reducing costs from service providers. In the first post, we focused on legal charges. In this article, we'll look at how to save money on bank fees.
 
Manufacturing and distribution companies tend to shop for competitive pricing from suppliers every year or so . But as we noted before, this is not always the best approach to a service provider relationship. In fact, it usually does not make a lot of sense to change vendors every year. When it comes to intellectual capital, the longer the relationship, the larger the knowledge base . This encourages retention.

Topics: Featured, Management

The 25% Approach: Legal

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

In the manufacturing world, the process for cutting material costs is well-established. Manufacturing companies take competitive bids for their key raw materials. Major suppliers bid for pieces of the business. This is usually done every year, but some companies will opt to do it every two to three years.

Topics: Business Operations, Featured, Accounting & Finance

No Man's Land 4M Issues Part 5 - Management

by Peter Duff

PDC Consulting

Peter is a seasoned financial and operational executive who is passionate about enabling  businesses to reach the next profit and cash generation level. He brings to consulting a broad experience of over 30 years as EVP, COO, and CFO roles in diverse consumer, industrial and technology businesses. Peter has been responsible for significant improvements in revenue, margins, expense as well as cash levels in manufacturing and service oriented businesses. He has a solid background in domestic and international settings with top 500 companies, middle market, start-ups and service operations. Peter is a trusted adviser to private equity and other fund managers.

In earlier articles we have looked at issues confronting early stage and middle market companies as they traverse,“ no man’s land", that area where companies are too big to be small and too small to be big. We examined specific companies as they came across market, model, money and now finally management issues. I have saved management issues to the end as they confront the Founder/ CEO with some of the most intractable problems to solve.

Topics: Management, Content Type

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