Logistics is the whole process of planning, implementing and controlling the effective flow and storage of raw materials, intermediate stocks, final products and related information from the starting point to the consumption place to meet the needs of the consumers. It constitutes the basic activity of the enterprise value chain, and is the key to the enterprise's competitive advantage. While strengthening the development of technology and promoting the overall quality management, many production enterprises have turned their eyes on the seeking of cost advantages and value advantages to the logistics field before and after production.
the modern logistics is the third profit source of the production and circulation enterprises in the 60-70 years of twentieth Century. Most enterprises in the developed countries put the focus of the competition on profit in the production field, and make every effort to reduce the consumption of material resources to obtain "the first profit source of the enterprise", and make every effort to improve the productivity of the enterprise to obtain "second of the enterprise". The source of profit. However, the two "profit sources" in the field of production must be restricted by the level of the development of science and technology. Under the new conditions of production mechanization, continuous improvement of automation and the increasing process and standardization of production technology, the enhancement of the convergence of technology makes the two "profit sources" basically without "spring". In the 80s, facing the challenge of the fierce market competition in the world, people began to turn the eyes from the production field to the non production field. It was surprising to find that the cost of creating the value of logistics was quite high, and the waste in the process of enterprise production and management was still very prominent. With the addition of microelectronic technology, information technology and institutional innovation, since 80s, as the "third source of profit" of the logistics of the enterprise, it has become a new focus of the market competition, and has been highly valued by the theoretical and practical circles. Logistics has run through the whole process of production and circulation, so the reasonable and efficient logistics can bring great profits through the coordination and improvement of the whole production and circulation structure of the enterprise. The initial understanding of the third profit source theory is based on two prerequisites: first, logistics can be completely separated from the circulation process. Logistics is an independent running system with its own goals and management, so it can conduct an independent overall accounting.
Second, as the logistics and other independent business activities, it is not a total cost component, but a separate profit factor. Logistics can become an independent system of "profit center". Logistics becomes third profit sources based on two self abilities: first, logistics has an important impact on the cost of enterprise marketing activities in the whole enterprise strategy, and logistics is an important point of production of enterprise cost. Therefore, through logistics rationalization, modernization and a series of activities to reduce costs, support the protection of marketing and procurement activities. Therefore, logistics not only refers to the origin of the main cost, but also refers to the concern of reducing the cost. Logistics is the "treasure house of reducing the cost", which is the image expression of this kind of understanding. Cost and profit are related, logistics as the main body can provide a large number of direct and indirect profits for enterprises, is the main activity of forming business profits.
Third, the most important function of the logistics is not only to reduce the consumption, reduce the cost or increase the profit for the enterprise, but also to improve the service level of the enterprise to the user, and then improve the competitive ability of the enterprise. Through logistics service guarantee, enterprises can reduce costs and increase profits with their overall capabilities.
Logistics, as the third profit source, has become the weapon of business for many enterprises, especially multinational corporations.