Mesh Makes It Easy for Mid-sized Manufacturers to Streamline Sourcing: From RFQs to Quality Control
Sahil Shah, co-founder of MESH, is the son of an entrepreneur. “My dad built MES, a supply chain and logistics company,” Shah said. “We purchase and source products for the lighting, automotive, and agriculture markets. MESH is an outgrowth of 8 years of developing an internal portal to manage RFQ, supplier quotes, supplier information as well as certifications.”
MES, Inc. is a full-service provider of global manufacturing and supply chain management services. MES purchases and sources globally, with warehouses around the globe. With offices in US, Mexico, India, China, and Poland, MES ships just-in-time to major automotive, agriculture, lighting and industrial OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers .
MES has developed a mission critical solution called MESH which is used by 100+ team members, 400+ suppliers and has been used to create and process about 4,200 request for quotations (RFQs).
“MESH is a portal that centralizes all of our quoting activity & part data and cuts across our entire end-to-end workflow, from finding a source, to awarding business” Shah said, “including product quality planning and control.”
Fast forward eight years. New tariffs had just come about and manufacturers and logistics companies were evaluating new sources of supply.
“5 years back, at the end of my internship” Shah said, “I asked him why don’t we commercialize our RFQ/RFP system into a product and sell it to other people? That started to get the ball rolling on MESH. Since, I had taken up a job with IBM & MES was busy dealing with Tariffs and then COVID, we didn’t make much progress till last year.”
MESH Provides Affordable ERP-like Functionality Efficiently to Buyers and Sellers
MESH was still just an idea when COVID struck. Shah, who had graduated with his degree in Supply Chain & Statistics and had been working in Chicago, returned home for the shutdown.
“It was just me and my dad,” he said. “We decided to start doing this and build a business plan in Fall 2020. We put together the ground work, hired the same development team that MES uses, and launched the MESH RFQ portal in April of this year. We can help these manufacturing companies streamline their purchasing processes.”
Efficiency saves the manufacturers money. “The other thing we have found, Shah said, “is that even in COVID the demand for these companies’ products hasn’t gone down. Cars need parts.”
MESH targets small to mid-sized companies ($10- to $250-million in revenue) that supply into the automotive industry. The large billion dollar corporations already have expensive ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems. However, that isn’t the case for the $10- to $250-million manufacturers, and there are over 60,000 companies of this size. Buyers at these companies work with 100+ suppliers and send anywhere from 100-600 RFQ’s annually across about 30+ commodities and services —and Shah says the market is severely underserved.
Mid-tier buyers and sellers in the automotive supply chain use MESH to source a range of products, from raw materials to finished components. They like the ease-of-use, readiness of integrating the MESH platform into their current processes, and the simplicity of on-boarding and training. MESH can be configured very easily and quickly according to customer requirements.
Sellers can enter the portal and upload parts from an Excel spreadsheet immediately or, if they don’t have the information in a spreadsheet, follow a template approach to enter parts. Buyers can access the virtual catalogue and request quotes. There is no cost to open a supplier account, and buyers get a 90-day free trial.
“We want MESH to be a one-stop shop for sourcing processes for all small to mid-sized manufacturers,” Shah said. “We are building it so buyers & commodity managers can use it as a workflow software.”