Issue: Sep 2005


Super Group Supply Chain Partners



Pioneers innovation in supply chain visibility

by Rod Stout

The impact of export growth in the automotive industry has positioned South Africa as a global industry player. With the influx of new export contracts, the South African automotive industry is booming and strong industry growth has been announced by many of the big players.
Collaboration and supply chain visibility are key business drivers for both manufacturers and suppliers who are increasingly realising the need to compete not just directly with their competitors but also indirectly with their competitors supply chains in order to achieve a significant competitive advantage.
With over three hundred automotive industry clients and having been a key player in one of the most significant industry collaboration projects to date, Super Group Supply Chain Partners is rapidly emerging as a leading force in automotive supply chain outsourcing across the Southern African region.
A core business philosophy of Super Group Supply Chain Partners is a proven belief in the true value of partnership in order to achieve common goals. The company views a partnership philosophy as critical to the success of any relationship where the prime objective is achieving a sustainable long term solution.
The company is actively involved in a variety of industries outside of the Automotive industry and offers clients a total end-to-end supply chain management solution from forwarding and clearing to outsourced warehousing and distribution.
Technology and consulting are key differentiators of the company and it has made a significant investment in intellectual capital with over two hundred permanent employees in the supply chain technology division alone.
Automotive clients consist of all the major Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) operating in South Africa, as well as over three hundred local component suppliers.
Since 1998, the companys flagship automotive supply chain operation has been managing the distribution of Parts & Accessories for one of the OEMs to over 100 dealerships and 10,000 customers countrywide.
With a dedicated focus on true visibility and proactive exception management Super Group Supply Chain Partners has successfully developed a sophisticated technology platform customised for the OEM. This platform manages the total end-to-end supply chain operation all within a real-time environment.
The system facilitates the tracking and proactive management of parts delivery throughout the entire supply chain, from order placement by the customer to an electronic Proof of Delivery (POD), and is capable of handling over 12,000 orders per day.
The ability to track in real-time the progress of an order from warehouse to end-customer ensures greater control and the resulting benefits of visibility into each stage of the process has resulted in more effective supply chain optimisation for the customer. This has lead to improved customer service and lower distribution costs due to greater forecast accuracy and reduced inventory levels.
Super Group Supply Chain Partners has also been actively involved in a joint initiative with South Africas Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC) in launching the South African Motor Industry Supply Chain Competitiveness Program (MISCCIP).
The MISCCIP project is unique in that nowhere else in the world have all the Original Equipment Manufacturers and automotive suppliers in one geographic area agreed to collaborate on a venture to improve the way the industry operates and communicates.
Collaborative Xchange, a business unit of Super Group Supply Chain Partners, was appointed as the technology provider for MISCCIP to develop an electronic connectivity platform that facilitates supply chain visibility among Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and their suppliers.
As the preferred technology partner, Collaborative Xchange developed the software and IT infrastructure to provide an information exchange hub for the automotive industry that eliminates manual processes and introduces true supply chain automation.
In an industry where the technology levels of different participants varies from advanced to low-tech environments, Collaborative Xchange has delivered a solution that enables all participants to access and respond to information electronically.
Collaboration has been made possible through a common technology process that provides easily accessible information at every logical point within the automotive supply chain. This technology allows all players to collaborate in real time providing a globally competitive advantage to the industry.
Collaborative Xchange manages all electronic communication between the various supply chain partners allowing each company to keep its existing systems, but acting as a translator when data moves between disparate systems. So basically, the entire industry is for the first time speaking the same language when talking to each other, even if they speak their own dialects within their factory walls.
The immediate value is increased visibility and pro-active management, leading to reduced
buffer stocks, reduced working capital, reduced cost of IT integration and reduced variability in demand cycles.
Productivity gains will be realised through better co-ordination of orders, management of lead times and overall transparency through all levels of the supply chain. A further benefit of MISCCIP is that it greatly reduces costs for all parties by enabling them to share infrastructure, resources and skills.
The project has been incredibly successful and received further support and backing from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA) and the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM).


An overview of Super Groups extensive range of operations

Super Rent, our national vehicle rental division, specialises in commercial vehicles with a fleet of over 1,500 vehicles.
Micor, a specialised freight forwarding and clearing company, with over 50 years experience and representatives in more than 46 countries around the world.
Dedicated long haul freight division that can transport goods from any port to any town in the country as well as an established cross border operation into Africa.
One of the largest retail auto parts networks in the country with over 85 owned stores and 120 franchised stores.
Sophisticated distribution network and leading technological innovation facilitates the delivery of any part to over 300 retail outlets nationwide within a 24-hour period.
Large fleet management division with operations in both South Africa and Australia managing a combined fleet size of over 60,000 vehicles.
Currently over 90 facilities and offices in South Africa, and over 120 across the continent.
Nearing completion of one of the countrys largest multi-principal warehousing developments a 160,000 square metres Super Park.
First phase ready for occupancy by September 2005 and already occupied by some of the countrys largest FMCG players including Unilever, Colgate-Palmolive and Kimberly-Clark.


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