Analysis of a two-echelon inventory system with two supply modes

J.J. Arts, G.P. Kiesmuller

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In this paper, we consider a serial two-echelon periodic review inventory system with two supply modes at the most upstream stock point. As control policy for this system, we propose a natural extension of the dual-index policy, which has three base-stock levels. We consider the minimization of long run average inventory holding, backlogging, and both per unit and fixed emergency ordering costs. We provide nested newsboy characterizations for two of the three base-stock levels involved and show a separability result for the difference with the remaining base-stock level. We use results for the single-echelon system to efficiently approximate the distributions of random variables involved in the newsboy equations and find an asymptotically correct approximation for both the per unit and fixed emergency ordering costs. Based on these results, we provide an algorithm for setting base-stock levels in a computationally efficient manner. In a numerical study, we investigate the value of dual-sourcing in supply chains and show that it is useful to decrease upstream stock levels. In cases with high demand uncertainty, high backlogging cost or long lead times, we conclude that dual-sourcing can lead to significant savings.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEindhoven
PublisherTechnische Universiteit Eindhoven
Number of pages25
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Publication series

NameBETA publicatie : working papers
ISSN (Print)1386-9213


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