STORY INLINE POST
Q: What opportunities will the new Daimler and Renault-Nissan COMPAS venture bring to suppliers in Aguascalientes?
EM: Having three different brands manufacturing in the country will create huge opportunities for the local supply chain. SMEs, in particular, will have an excellent opportunity to grow their participation in the industry as long as they can meet OEM requirements in terms of quality, productivity, cost and delivery times. Certification in IATF is a must, as well as understanding how best to integrate into manufacturing chains. Right now, the COMPAS venture has reached significant INFINITI production and eventually Mercedes-Benz will start manufacturing, adding to production volume and increasing pressure on suppliers.
MM: OEMs are looking to make their operations more cost-efficient and having a local supplier network is a key element in that strategy. In the end, logistics advantages are a gateway for more companies to be involved in global production operations.
Q: How do requirements change between companies of different nationalities and how does that impact strategies?
EM: Each company has its own specific requirements and certifications might change from one player to another. Nevertheless, quality is the common denominator among all industry participants. At the moment, GIRAA is focusing its support efforts on offering training for companies wanting to participate more actively in the supply chain. Talent is a key element in the automotive industry and OEMs generally demand that suppliers have specialized human capital to support their operations. We are working with universities in the state to train the people the industry needs because demand for talent will only increase.
MM: Aguascalientes is already a globalized entity and company executives must understand they need to invest in training and certifications to play in the big leagues. Our goal at the moment is supporting companies that go through their certification process, helping them understand that this investment will yield good results in the future. We are also pioneering the implementation of the dual-education system in Aguascalientes.