This chapter explores outputs on the distribution, or downstream side of the business. It includes the term management to discuss distribution and supply issues. The chapter deals with the physical aspects of supply chain management. Manufacturing processes are most frequently used as examples in supply chain discussions, but distribution applies to more than just physical goods. A very common marketing strategy is to offer a lower price by eliminating the middleman. From Michael Porter, suppliers co-exist with industry groups and they influence the rivalry among competitors. Transportation is an essential aspect of both supply and distribution. Perhaps the most visible aspect of supply is inventory. There are managerial tradeoffs as far as inventory is concerned. The information systems used in inventory control serves the whole operation, not just parts of it. A way of achieving the needed coordination is through Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). ERP integrates management information throughout the entire system and all the relevant work units and departments.