NEXCOM ‘Front and Center’ In the Middle East
- VIRGINIA BEACH
From the start of the U.S. involvement in the Middle East, the Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) was always “front and center” in that part of the world, said NEXCOM Public Affairs Officer (PAO) Courtney Williams.
“NEXCOM serviced those Sailors and carriers in the area of responsibility (AOR) which conducted hundreds of sorties a day supporting troops on the ground,” she stated.
EARLY NEXCOM SUPPORT
Prior to establishing the Navy Exchange 1Q COG program, an initiative servicing Navy ships stores, Williams said NEXCOM provided support to Navy aircraft carriers in the AOR through emergency procurement procedures.
“The support came in the form of food and beverage items, as well as health and beauty items,” she said.
Summer 2018 saw the expansion of NEXCOM’s 1Q COG program. Previously, NEXCOM Distribution had supported ships stores from its distribution centers in Japan and Guam, but there was no provision for servicing ships store needs in Europe and the Middle East until this program update.
Scott Gray, vice president of NEXCOM’s Ships Stores program, noted that in September 2018, Bahrain launched a 1Q COG catalog of about 150 of NEX’s highest performing items in food, beverage, candy, sports nutrition, and health and beauty aids, as well as other categories to meet the needs of service men and women.
“In the first month, the NEX filled 541,000 units with the highest demand being in the beverage/energy and candy categories,” Gray said.
“Over the years, orders continued to grow in this area, leading to a catalog expansion which launched in November 2020,” he continued. “The catalog was reviewed based on performance, fill rate, and items offered through other vendors.
“As a result, 25 unique items were added in beverage and snack categories in an effort to provide our Sailors with more selection at the same convenience and savings.”
In the first few months of this program, Gray said the NEX filled 220,000 units of these unique items, and as of March 2021, the NEX first quarter program supported a total of 1.9 million units at a retail worth $4.8 million.
From the NEX Bahrain Distribution Center: (from left) Frank Scott, logistics manager; Harli Thomas, 1Q coordinator; Padinjakkara Mohammed, lead, storage; Sreejith Murapaly, WMS; and Joaquim Vaz, lead, shipping.
Whether it was a bag of chips or softlines, NEXCOM Ships Stores supporting ships in the Middle East, like this one on the USS McFaul (DDG-74), have provided just about everything those deployed to these vessels needed on a daily basis.