Afternoon Coffee: Tax Evasion, Supply Chain Trends, Fast Food Goes Cerebral

Court rules that travel companies must pay taxes too
Travel
sites ordered to pay $150M in back taxes
-- Sobering news for Priceline,
Travelocity, and other travel sites, who were recently told to pay more
than a decade's worth of excise taxes to the state of Hawaii. It turns out
that while these sites made more than $2.7 billion in Hawaii hotel room
sales, they never bothered to pay state taxes. With a potential $20-million
increase in annual tax collections at stake, Hawaii's state administration
understandably made pursuing these taxes a top priority.

DHL executive's supply chain forecast
Comment: Supply Chain Trends in 2013 -- Dean Wyatt, the VP of
Business Development of Retail UK at DHL, summarizes some developments we
can expect to see this year in the supply chain world. One of them is the
increased diversification of retailers, with Amazon leading the trend in
its move last year to start stocking clothing.

Would you like a book with that?
U.K.
McDonald's swaps books for toys in Happy Meals
-- With a plan to give away
15 million books in lieu of the usual Happy Meal toys over the next two
years, McDonald's Corp. is about to become the biggest book distributor in
the U.K., reports say. Health advocates may balk, but the fast food giant
already has the backing of the National Literacy Trust, who is counting on
this strategy to help encourage children to read.

Simpler is better

Boeing Could Look to Global Retailers for Supply Chain Benchmarks
--
The executives at the Chicago-based aerospace company may soon be tweaking
the company's supply chain strategies to look more like those of Walmart or
Amazon. Instead of having multiple contracts managed by different contracts
officials with the same supplier, consolidating the work to one contracts
official per supplier would simplify negotiations and possibly lead to
lower prices for Boeing as well as for its customers.

- Sydney Lazarus

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