Siemens Gamesa launches two programmes in the Basque region designed to boost its suppliers' competitiveness

  • These projects are part the collaboration agreement recently entered into by Siemens Gamesa and the Basque regional government for the development of strategic projects locally that reinforce the wind energy supply chain so that it remains competitive and at the cutting-edge at the global level
  • This plan, a pioneering initiative, is articulated around two programmes: Suppliers2Excellence, focused on advanced management models, and Lean4Future, designed to further improve productive processes
  • The regional government's Councillor of Economic Development and Infrastructure, Arantxa Tapia, the CEO of Siemens Gamesa's Onshore Business, Ricardo Chocarro, and the President of Euskalit, Josetxo Hernández, unveiled the plan today
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Siemens Gamesa is seeking to foster the development of its Basque-based suppliers by rolling out a plan to support and propel their penetration of new markets by unlocking competitiveness gains and enhancing their productive processes. The company has around 770 suppliers in the region from which it purchased €420 million of goods and services in 2017.

The plan comprises two programmes: Suppliers2Excellence, focused on advanced management models, and Lean4Future, designed to further improve productive processes. Both programmes are articulated around advanced management techniques with the goal of creating a 'cluster' of suppliers so as to provide them with access to new markets and help them consolidate their presence in existing ones. Against this backdrop, the company has been working with the regional authorities on the promotion of a value chain in the manufacturing and services industries around renewable energy in Spain and abroad.

The company presented this pioneering initiative today before more than 50 enterprises at an event that was attended by the regional government's Councillor of Economic Development and Infrastructure, Arantxa Tapia, and the President of Euskalit, Josetxo Hernández. Siemens Gamesa, meanwhile, was represented by Ricardo Chocarro, CEO of the company's Onshore Business, and José Ignacio Larretxi, who runs these supplier programmes.

Suppliers2Excellence

The Suppliers2Excellence programme is based on the Advanced Management Model created by Euskalit and its trustees, one of whom is Siemens Gamesa. Implementation of this project provides the participating firms with guidance on how to incorporate advanced management concepts and methodologies so that they can expand their business horizons.

The company expects that by the end of the programme at least 80% of the participating firms will have received the seal from Euskalit for the progress made.

This is the second call for participation in this programme which is structured into three three-year calls. Between seven and 10 suppliers will participate in each edition so that it will encompass some 30 participants by the end of the three editions in 2022. Throughout the duration of the programme there will be training and experience-sharing sessions, in-situ support sessions and ongoing mentoring for each participating entity.

Lean4Future

In parallel, this year Siemens Gamesa is rolling out the second leg of this plan, the Lean4Future programme, designed to help the selected suppliers to upgrade their productive processes. The participating suppliers thus stand to improve specific performance indicators including health, safety, environmental, quality, delivery and cost management metrics.

Lean4Future was validated by means of two pilot tests conducted in Brazil in 2017, one involving a Basque supplier and the other, a Brazilian firm.

In light of the success of those pilot tests, in March of this year the company expanded Lean4Future by incorporating its factory in Ágreda, Soria, two additional Basque suppliers, Laulagun and Urtzinox, and Tafame, from Navarre. The idea is to continue to execute this project all year long at both its suppliers' and the company's own facilities.

Lean4Future is an 11-week programme carried out in the factories themselves so that Siemens Gamesa can work alongside the participating firms on improving their processes.

Participating firms

In 2017 a total of eight Basque firms participated in the Suppliers2Excellence programme: Ibermática, Amenábar, Grupo WEC, Matz Erreka, Ingeteam, Ormazabal, Laulagun and Sumelec. Siemens Gamesa is the first company in the Basque region to execute a plan of this nature, further evidencing and reinforcing its commitment to the region where it has two factories (one in Asteasu, Guipuzcoa and the other in Mungia, Vizcaya) and an R&D centre (in the Zamudio science and technology park in Vizcaya).

New Basque firms are joining the programme in 2018. Specifically, Siemens Gamesa is extending the Basque programme to include 11 new suppliers - Antec, Cavycar, Cemvisa Vicinay, Fundiciones Garbi, Herdit, Hine Renovables, Labekoa, Norclamp, Ormazabal Distribución Primaria, Urtzinox and GES -, who will be joined by another 10 suppliers from Navarre.

The third call will take place in 2019 with the incorporation of up to 10 more Basque firms.

“Ingeteam, a firm devoted to innovation and characterised by its commitment to its customers, has participated in this pioneering initiative for the implementation of continuous improvement solutions together with our customer, Siemens Gamesa”, said Ana Goten, Director of Ingeteam's Wind Business Unit, Ana Goyen. “The Lean4Future project has enabled us to significantly improve the efficiency and lead time of our deliveries via enhanced coordination with our customer. The Suppliers2Excellence project has made it possible for several sector players to share their best practices and prompted us to reconsider certain aspects with a view to enhancing our managerial excellence”, added Ms. Goyen.

The Director of Laulagun, Jorge Damián, said “we are grateful to Siemens Gamesa for giving us the chance to participate in this project which implies a boost for how we manage, for our competitiveness and for our search for excellence, framed by our determination to create value for our customers in order to meet the market's increasingly stringent demands."

The head of the Automation Division and Smart Grid Business Unit at Ormazabal, Hugo Baroja, said, meanwhile, that “for Ormazabal this is a fantastic opportunity to collaborate with a benchmark customer and, indeed, with its core suppliers. It is enabling us to lift our horizons beyond our usual technical and commercial collaboration with Siemens Gamesa by allowing us to share approaches, methodologies and systems.  Moreover, it is giving us the chance to share experiences and best practices with its key suppliers while helping us with our own learning and improvement process.”

Lastly, the Director of Matz Erreka, Imanol Olakoaga, noted that "Erreka has been fine-tuning its management under the Mondragón Corporate Governance Model for years and thought it would be hugely informative to contrast that approach with the Euskalit Advanced Management Model, which is why it has decided to take part in the project being spearheaded by Siemens Gamesa. The experience is proving very enriching and of tremendous value for how we manage our company."

Collaboration with the Basque regional government

These programmes are part the collaboration agreement recently entered into by Siemens Gamesa and the Basque regional government for the development of strategic projects locally that reinforce the wind energy supply chain so that it remains competitive and at the cutting-edge at the global level. The alliance, which runs until 2020 and will be rolled over annually, contemplates five strategic areas: supply chain, digitalisation of turbine parts, turbine part testing, training and Industry 4.0-related start-ups.

Siemens Gamesa has been a driving force in the development of the wind supply chain in the Basque region and intends to remain one. By means of this agreement, it will join forces with the Basque regional government, which has identified wind power as a priority and accordingly wants to engage the major Basque energy sector players so that they in turn, thanks to their influence over the value chain, also involve their suppliers.


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