Volvo chooses South Carolina to be its first American production plant
In an attempt to target the North American premium car market, Volvo Cars has picked South Carolina to be home to its new factory. The $500 million investment in their first U.S. plant indicates what the CEO Hakan Samuelsson called the “commitment to the revival” of their U.S. business. The Berkeley County plant aims to begin production as early as 2018 and eventually produce 100,000 vehicles a year while also creating 2,000 jobs.
Samuelsson reveled that although Mexico was a consideration, South Carolina was chosen due to logistics factors such as the large amount of the parts to be imported as well as exporting the finished vehicles. However, last year’s 8 percent decline in American sales saw Volvo deliver 56,000 cars. This means that the production investment is pertinent to aiding Volvo’s return to 100,000 deliveries. On a side note, South Carolina also did well in landing Volvo, offering a financing package of 25 cents in incentives for every dollar the Chinese-owned automaker spends.
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Apple commits to using sustainable wood in its supply chain
On Monday, Apple announced that it wants to obtain 100 percent of its paper packaging from renewable sources. Working in conjunction with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the company aims to be a leader in sustainability. Their goal is to “achieve a net-zero impact on the world´s supply of sustainable virgin fiber”, as reported in their recent press announcement. Currently, Apple generates enough renewable energy to power 87% of its worldwide facilities.
This multi-year sustainability project also seeks to protect roughly one million acres of “working forests” in China, which will provide Apple with paper and wood products. Nonetheless, this is seen by some onlookers as an attempt by the firm to mitigate against the bad publicity caused by poor labor practices in a few of their manufacturing hubs, such as Foxconn.
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California State University joins the pack of Universities offering SCM Masters courses
Due to the increased demand for supply chain managers, more universities are attempting to deliver better trained and more qualified graduates. California State University, with more than two dozen Fortune 500 firms orbiting its 80 mile radius, has seen an exceptionally high demand for supply chain talent. Furthermore, forty percent of U.S. containerized goods are handled by both the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports. This means that graduates will have ample opportunities to network with these firms in the vicinity, firms that could also be their prospective employers.
The course offered at California State University can be completed in either 16 or 21 months. With the rapid advancement in technology, Professor Kasra Fedrom of Georgetown McDonough School of Business believes that the “potential is huge”. In addition, there will be an increase of 26% by 2020 in U.S. logistics jobs as forecasted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Students will benefit from the positive future job prospects as well as from being in a fast paced supply chain environment.
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