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Re-shoring in practice

Re-shoring in practice

Offering technical solutions, responsiveness and price competitiveness are critical enablers to re-building local supply chain capability.

In January 2014 at the World Economic Forum in Davos, David Cameron, then prime minster of the UK pledged to make the UK the ‘re-shore nation’. With my interest in manufacturing I was keen to find out more about the phenomena but real life examples were limited. I first heard about Alucast when I was being interviewed for a BBC World Service programme on re-shoring and I was intrigued to find out more. An article in the Birmingham Post outlined some of the history of Alucast’s re-shoring journey but not the specific details of what had been the drivers and enablers to their success.

It was a great honour when Tony Sartorius (Chairman, Alucast) agreed to make a case study about how re-shoring actually worked in practice for Alucast. The issues faced by Alucast’s customers (e.g. exposure to exchange rate fluctuations, poor product quality, poor product availability, lack of responsiveness) were not uncommon for engineered components. Working with Alucast one particular customer for diesel pump casings, was able to save over £300k/annum by re-shoring manufacture back from South America to the UK. There was a competitive tendering process for Alucast to win the business. As Tony explains, he believes that Alucast’s continued investment in people, in the volatile period post global economic downturn that was critical. It enabled them to be to ‘move up’ the value chain, and offer a technical solution in a short time period (as they had available capacity) whilst being price competitive.

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Supply Chains in Practice: How Things Get to You

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