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An Uncharacteristic Stumble for Nissan

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Many industry supply chain management teams have a keen recollection of the aftereffects of the Tsunami that struck northern Japan and the severe floods that impacted Thailand in 2011, especially their implications on automotive supply chains. In a May 2012 commentary published on both Supply Chain Matters and the Supply Chain Expert Community, we pointed out that while Toyota and Honda supply chains were both severely impacted by the floods, the implied winner turned out to be Nissan, who bounced back the quickest of Japan’s big three auto makers.  This same resilience was also reflected in the earlier northern Japan tsunami, where the Nissan supply chain team demonstrated stronger resiliency to supply disruptions.  Two weeks after the tsunami disaster, Nissan was able to assess all of its suppliers and was able to be the first to resume volume production. But, as we all know, in today’s dynamic world of business, […]


Airbus Elects Non Lithium Ion Batteries

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Aerospace OEM Airbus’s competitive response to the Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the Airbus A350. The ongoing grounding crisis surrounding the Dreamliner program has been precipitated by unresolved issues involving its lithium-ion batteries.  It should therefore be little surprise that yesterday, rival Airbus announced that it was dropping its previous choice of lithium ion battery power for the A350, in favor of conventional nickel-cadmium battery systems. The A350 has had its share of previous program delays brought about by the design of more technologically advanced, lightweight composite materials and by various issues involving the global supply chain.  As direct competition to the 787 Dreamliner, it is rather late to market, to state the obvious. Airbus expects first flight of this aircraft to occur sometime this summer, with aircraft certification expected sometime in 2014. According to reporting in today’s Wall Street Journal, Airbus officials indicate that the decision to move away from […]