May 19, 2020

BMW opens new Regional Distribution Centre

BMW
car
Andrew Woods
2 min
BMW opens new Regional Distribution Centre

BMW Group South Africa has opened its new Regional Distribution Centre at Waterfall, Gauteng. Project developer Attacq and BMW Group have invested R260m between them to create a 32 000sq.m facility with storage space for 600 000 parts and the ability to “deliver increased flexibility to dealers”.

This investment is in addition to the R6.1bn injection that has been pivotal in upgrading the company’s Rosslyn manufacturing plant for production of the new BMW X3.  

The bespoke warehouse has doubled in size from 16 000m² to 32 000m² and has capacity for further expansion in the medium term. There are approximately 100 000 bin locations in the RDC containing 30 000 different kinds of parts. It will store some 600 000 parts and handle thousands of dealer orders every day, and services 56 dealers across Southern Africa. It will refine yet further the service customers of the BMW Group brands, with service delivery of up to three times per day to dealers in Gauteng.

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The relocation of parts warehousing has created space at BMW Group South Africa’s Midrand head office. A further R260m investment is being made for the upgrade of all of the Group’s Midrand facilities, including the development of the Midrand Campus. This expansion will include office space to house some 500 associates from our SAP Shared Services Centre, currently based in Menlyn, Pretoria. The BMW Group South Africa SAP Shared Services Centre has grown at a phenomenal rate recently, doubling its headcount as it takes on more global contracts. Such is the space available at Midrand, there is capacity for further lar

CEO BMW Group South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa, Tim Abbott said: “The business of mobility is increasingly complex and intricate. More than ever, it’s critical that we’re able to be flexible in our approach. The new Regional Distribution Centre will allow us to react timeously and seamlessly to changing customer needs because it is a state-of-the-art, highly technical facility.”

“As a leader in the future of mobility we are a company focussed on learning, innovating, and inspiring. Our employees are at the centre of this philosophy. By moving our associates from the SAP Shared Services Centre, as well as incorporating our colleagues from BMW Financial Services, we’re in a better positon than ever to collaborate and learn from each other.”

 The company also anticipates having another plant in sub-Saharan Africa within the next 10 years.


 

 

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Jun 11, 2021

G7 Summit guide: What it is and what leaders hope to achieve

G7
Sustainability
G7Summit
EU
3 min
Business Chief delves into what the G7 is and represents and what its 2021 summit hopes to achieve, in terms of sustainability and global trade

Unless you’ve had your head buried in the sand, you’ll have seen the term ‘G7’ plastered all over the Internet this week. We’re going to give you the skinny on exactly what the G7 is and what its purpose on this planet is ─ and whether it’s a good or a bad collaboration. 

 

Who are the G7?

The Group of Seven, or ‘G7’, may sound like a collective of pirate lords from a certain Disney smash-hit, but in reality, it’s a group of the world’s seven largest “advanced” economies ─ the powerhouses of the world, if you like. 

The merry band comprises:

  • Canada
  • France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • The United Kingdom
  • The United States

Historically, Russia was a member of the then-called ‘G8’ but found itself excluded after their ever-so-slightly illegal takeover of Crimea back in 2014.

 

Since 1977, the European Union has also been involved in some capacity with the G7 Summit. The Union is not recognised as an official member, but gradually, as with all Europe-linked affairs, the Union has integrated itself into the conversation and is now included in all political discussions on the annual summit agenda. 

 

When was the ‘G’ formed?

Back in 1975, when the world was reeling from its very first oil shock and the subsequent financial fallout that came with it, the heads of state and government from six of the leading industrial countries had a face-to-face meeting at the Chateau de Rambouillet to discuss the global economy, its trajectory, and what they could do to address the economic turmoil that reared its ugly head throughout the 70s. 

 

Why does the G7 exist?

At this very first summit ─ the ‘G6’ summit ─, the leaders adopted a 15-point communiqué, the Declaration of Rambouillet, and agreed to continuously meet once a year moving forward to address the problems of the day, with a rotating Presidency. One year later, Canada was welcomed into the fold, and the ‘G6’ became seven and has remained so ever since ─ Russia’s inclusion and exclusion not counted. 

 

The group, as previously mentioned, was born in the looming shadow of a financial crisis, but its purpose is more significant than just economics. When leaders from the group meet, they discuss and exchange ideas on a broad range of issues, including injustice around the world, geopolitical matters, security, and sustainability. 

 

It’s worth noting that, while the G7 may be made up of mighty nations, the bloc is an informal one. So, although it is considered an important annual event, declarations made during the summit are not legally binding. That said, they are still very influential and worth taking note of because it indicates the ambitions and outlines the initiatives of these particularly prominent leading nations. 

 

Where is the 2021 G7 summit?

This year, the summit will be held in the United Kingdom deep in the southwest of England, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson hosting his contemporaries in the quaint Cornish resort of Carbis Bay near St Ives in Cornwall. 
 

What will be discussed this year? 

After almost two years of remote communication, this will be the first in-person G7 summit since the novel Coronavirus first took hold of the globe, and Britain wants “leaders to seize the opportunity to build back better from coronavirus, uniting to make the future fairer, greener, and more prosperous.”

 

The three-day summit, running from Friday to Sunday, will see the seven leaders discussing a whole host of shared challenges, ranging from the pandemic and vaccine development and distribution to the ongoing global fight against climate change through the implementation of sustainable norms and values. 

 

According to the UK government, the attendees will also be taking a look at “ensuring that people everywhere can benefit from open trade, technological change, and scientific discovery.” 

 

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