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New Supply Chain Partner Ecosystem in Procurement Needed

New Supply Chain Partner Ecosystem in Procurement Needed

Geostrategic Nearshoring and International Transport and Logistics Procurement in the Conflicting Areas of Capacity, Availability, Profitability and „Old-School Excel Tender Management“ – that was the focus of the supplychainmachine.com 5th  Tender Management Conference in the iconic Tüpras Besiktas Istanbul Stadium on 26th February 2024.

“The international procurement of transport, logistics, and supply chain services is booming. The tender frequence in the market has reached an all-time high“, says Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan. At the conference kick-off in the Tüpras Besiktas stadium on 26th February 2024, the home arena of Besiktas Istanbul, the professor for logistics and business informatics with a special focus on automotive supply chain management and digitization at the University of Applied Sciences Ludwigshafen reviews the current supply chain market situation. “We see painful top-down cost cutting measures from all over the management boards in Germany and Central Europe with parallel supplychain reconfiguration in Eurasia and a geo-strategic nearshoring boom for ramping-up additional shared service center and production capacities in Türkiye, Poland, Hungary, Romania and the Mediterranan region incl. Maghreb, explains the former Direct Report to a global board member of DB Schenker and personal advisor to C-level executive managers in the logistics and automotive industry.


While Andreas Thuy, Vice President Supply Chain Technology and Digitalization of the international automotive supplier Schaeffler headquarted in Germany introduced with Schaeffler’s Product Owner, Enrico Schlick, the new supply chain software solution “Transportation Data Cube“ for managing freight rates, transport tender calculation, shipment data up to measuring CO2 emissions in transport networks, Birol Sen from Sisecam followed-up Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan’s thoughts on nearshoring and the Turkish production location. “The challenges in Central Europe and Türkiye are somehow similiar when it comes to investment decisions. It is all about CAPEX, handling interest rates and securing core raw materials for keeping production going“, Sisecam’s Senior Director Supply Chain and Head of Procurement with a Toyota background clearly explained. Turhan Özen, C-Executive in supply chain and aviation industry and Turkish Cargo’s former Chief Cargo Officer strengthens that assessment and highlights the competitive advantages Türkiye offers to German industry and investors in terms of logistics power and opportunities. “Western and Central Europe show a dramatic bureaucracy and slow decision-making processes compared to an agile and very dynamic market area in and around Türkiye, Turhan Özen discussed with the international professionals.


For the first time, Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan’s original and sold-out supplychainmachine.com Tender Management Conference event series from the MHP Arena Stuttgart in Germany came to Türkiye. After 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2023 now in its 5th edition with the progressive co-creation partners and sponsors of DFDS, Sarp Intermodal, Greenlog, Mitlog, Verimex and Galata. “After having just welcomed 140 guests in the MHP Arena Stuttgart 5 months ago, we are really proud to celebrate the 5th supplychainmachine.com Tender Management Conference together with the next 100 international guests in the spectacular venue of the Tüpraş Beşiktaş JK Istanbul stadium“, Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan says.


100 highly focussed and carefully selected international participants – all managing directors, leaders as well as professionals in supply chain engineering, procurement, supplier network management, business development, sales, pricing and tender management from e.g. automotive, glass, food, fashion, steel, metal processing, packaging, freight forwarding, logistics service providers, supply chain sofware and many more sectors –  came to rethink the supply chain procurement partner ecosystem and the way how transport and logistics services are tendered by today. 21 international speakers and overall 10 co-creation partners showcased for example new intermodal transport solutions and software based concepts that will make industrial manufacturerers, retail and their logistics service providers more competitive in tenders.

Under the full moderation leadership of Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan, the 5th Tender Management Conference 2024 was hosted together with Aysberg Basın Yayın Ltd. Sti. and showed with international speakers e.g. from Mercedes-Benz Türk, Sisecam, Schaeffler, Mahle, Brose, Maersk, DFDS, DP World, LKW Walter, DHL Freight, Transporeon, Sarp Intermodal, Northvolt or CMS Hasche-Sigle a high quality line-up from the very beginning. The supply chain leaders and professionals adressed many cutting-edge topics ranging from applications of artificial intelliegence in logistics procurement and software based tender management as well as ESG and Supply Chain Due Dilligence Acts with relevance for international supply chains in the European and Turkish market – last one presented by Dr. Döne Yalcin, Managing Partner of CMS Türkiye and the Head of CMS Sustainability for Austria and CEE. “The EU Supply Chain Act hast the most relevance also for Turkish enterprises“, Dr. Döne Yalcin says.


In his keynote "The Green Deal and its Transformation in Türkiye: Pioneering Zero-Carbon Farming with Automated Processes - A Blueprint for Industrial Manufacturing and Logistics“ Sencer Solakoglu fascinated the attending community with his progressive AI and automation based zero-carbon farming methodology. “Feyz Farm is considered as being an international benchmark and the pionieering way we bring technology to farming directly has a positive impact to make the farming business attractive again for the younger generation in a big market like Türkiye. I am not a farming company. I am a technology enterprise“, the president of TÜSEDAD and managing director of Feyz farm stated. “Artifical Intelligence definetly is disruptive and a game changer in so many business segments all over the global“, Dr Cagla Gül Şenkardeş argued. “Look at my glasses. I can take a picture from the entire audience here and can automatically identify you in social media and internet in real time“, the assistant professor and head of the Entrepreneurship in Technology and Innovation department at Istanbul Bilgi University showcased some existing scenarios for the business community.


Next to AI applications, software based tender management also nearshoring and related intermodal transport solutions were on special focus. Therefore, panelists like Ralf-Charley Schultze, President of the International Union for Road-Rail Combined Transport (UIRR) located next to the EU-Commission in Brussels, Murat Kavrar, Managing Director DHL Freight Greece and Türkiye and DHL Freight’s Vice President of Sales for Central Eastern Europe joined a dedicated panel together with Fuat Pamukcu, Vice President of Sales, Marketing, Business Development and Strategy at the DFDS Mediterranean Business Unit, Türkiye's largest freight ferry operator and a market leader in connecting Türkiye in the Mediterranean corridor. “We are in a super election year on global level not only in the U.S., but also when it comes to the Black Sea Region. The Black Sea Region will gain more and more geo-strategic importance also for further business growth for our customers. We therefore will intensify new Ro-Ro connections there and also to the nearshoring boom markets in the Maghreb region including Egypt“, Fuat Pamukcu stated on the stage. The increasing tradelane trend in that region, especially between Romania and Türkiye is also stressed by DHL Freight’s Murat Kavrar when looking to the recent tenders in transport and logistics. According to the international experienced freight forwarding manager the geo-strategic momentum dramatically changed when it comes to global production volume shifts and Eurasias importance. The Türkiye-Africa-South East Asia air freight network for the current supply chain decoupling and local-for-local strategies in the global industrial manufacturing world is a heavy asset for the Turkish nearshoring market, Turhan Özen and Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan comment.


In his conference interview video, Manuel Friedlein, describes how to make international transport RFQs and invoicing smarter. The Head of Logistics Procurement at Brose, the fourth largest family-owned automotive supplier worldwide headquarterd in Germany, gave the Easy4Pro as a software solution as an example that helped making tendering and invoicing much easier within Brose’s international inbound transport network and saved FTEs in invoicing handling, for example. He, Joachim Hermanns, Team Manager Integrated Sales at Maersk Germany and responsible for the Automotive and Industrial Manufacturing North Europe Continent vertical markets, and Patrick Gueth, DP World's Head of Tender Management and Pricing based in Dubai and Switzerland, agree that the current Red Sea supply chain crisis has resulted in more work in procurement and inbound transport network planning. However, this current crisis is absolutly nothing compared to the COVID-19 supply chain disruptions in recent years. “We can handle this situation as production volume will stay moderate in 2024 and most likely beyond“, Manuel Friedlein forecasts in his interview video played live in the stadium.  


Coming back to the core conference topic, Tender Management, Joachim Hermanns demonstrated Maersk’s vertical integrator approach: „Depending on the tender complexity, we are able to calculate a full European transport tender in less than 3 weeks based on a mix of AI driven software and of course, Excel based homework. This includes also the entire alignment process across all management and operations layers.“ In addition, “RFQs need to be streamlined and standardized. There is no need for such a complexity in price matrices and invoicing“ explained Patrick Gueth. According to him, DP World increases its logistics capacities in Türkiye: “The Turkish market is of great importance for the upcoming tender years and there is a high interest in the Central European market to get much more transparency on this big market“, the international experienced supply chain engineering and pricing leader knows.


Jürgen Mast, former Senior Manager from Mercedes-Benz Group and having been responsible for exterieur quality across all car and van models, points out the legal risks when logistics service providers try to become process manufacturers as Tier-1 producers in the OEM value chain. His exclusive conference video discussion partner Volker Staab, Chief Quality Officer of automotive battery cell supplier Northvolt, urgently recommends not only to focus on labor costs in the business case when re-allocating industrial prodution sites. The experiended leader in the international Tier-1 automotive industry says: „Keep an eye on your one-time costs when shifting your production site. In most cases they are fare too optimistic calculated“. Both supplier, production, and quality related international managers called for stress tests and fall-back options before any business project implementation.


Next to international networking the conference community enjoyed an exclusive stadium tour with a special highlight when sitting on the coach-staff-reserve bench of Besiktas Istanbul at the football field. The exceptional moderation of Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan and his direct style of talking made networking free of hierarchy, kept the event interactive, motivating and simply  entertaining throughout the day even though it was packed with serious business around transport and logistics procurement.

In the afternoon, Mehmet Yigit Altiparmak, Managing Director of one of the most dynamic growing intermodal playes in the pan-European-Türkiye/Baltics/Azerbaijan corridor, Sarp Intermodal, demonstrated entrepreneurship par excellence when talking about TAL Trailer and its inhouse trailer and swap body production. According to Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan „European logistics service providers can learn from Sarp Intermodal. Onur Talay and his team are on the right way to become independent from third parties in new times of constant strategic supplier constraints and ongoing material bottlenecks“, the former youth football player of the 1. FC Nürnberg underlined.


After being present as speaker at the German conference edition in the MHP Arena Stuttgart in September 2023, the supplychainmachine.com Tender Management Conference event team is proud to had them one more time in their line-up as they hardly speak themselves on events: LKW WALTER. The leader in pan-European FTL business with more than 15,000 trailers and a strong footprint in intermodal corridor solutions once more demonstrated why they are considered as being top industrialized in the internatinoal freight forwarding market. Sales Director, Erich Bergmann, presented LKW WALTER’s brand new eCMR offering for the European and Turkish market. As alternative powertrain requirements more and more become relevant in international road freight tenders, Rüchan Pehlivan from the international automotive supplier MAHLE exclusively shared his Total Cost of Ownership analysis for future powertrain technologies in heavy duty applications. The market analyst in the commercial vehicle segment from the German headoffice in Stuttgart showcased his analysis based on two high volume automotive inbound transport routes – from Germany to Gebze industrial zone and Poland to Bursa automotve cluster. “Our MAHLE MHD powertrain scenario expects a strong ramp-up of BEV and FCEV trucks until 2035“, explained the former engineer in MAHLE's Global Quality team and project lead for the "Quality Sprint" roll-up in the MAHLE production networ. Refering to this very ambitious goals in sustainability dimensions and gaining complexity in fleet management in pan-European road freight business, “only combined transport will make it possible to achieve the European Commission’s ambitious climate targets“, UIRR’s president Ralf-Charly Schultze says. According to Schultze “there is a need to be carbon neutral by 2025 and „Fit for 55“ by 2030 which means a 55 percent reduction in CO2 emissions. In a consequence that means we need to tripple combined transport by 2050. A challenging task for the entire sector not only when considering the today’s situation in the pan-European railway infrastructure.“


Overall: while the best price-performance ratios were the main focus in logistics procurement in the past, this focus is now combined with securing availability and capacities for the production network. However, the transport and logistics market has experienced a turnaround since the pandemic. Suddenly, logistics service providers were in the driving seat. In some cases, lead buyers even started talking about "wild west methods". “Fact is: the willing suppliers and logistics service providers are running away from logistics buyers and their supply chain directors, not only in the automotive industry“, Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan explains. “A new partner ecosystem and a break with frustrating "Excel fiddling" is needed“, commented Fabian Bodenbender, Senior Business Development Manager from Transporeon, in his final presentation in the Besiktas Istanbul stadium.

And Teoman Karamanoglu added: “There is definetly a need for a new partnership approach in transport logistics across all industries, not only in the automotive industry.“ The Head of Indirect Procurement of Mercedes-Benz Türk mastered in his presentation the balancing act between seriousness and humor. With a twinkle in his eye, he showed the stakeholder map from the perspective of global procurement and addressed typical stereotypes in logistics and material supplier procurement negotiations.

„We had a very productive day with value-adding presentations, interactive Q&As, and contributions from a very exclusive, international community“, Turhan Özen and Seren Ünsac, supplychainmachine’s  Independent Vice Club Manager Eurasia summed-up. Therefore, “we already plan to come back with the Tender Management Conference event series to Türkiye in February 2025. Of course, once again in such a spectacular football arena in Istanbul“, added Ilker Altun, General Manager of AYSBERG Press and Publishing.

This is the coolest, exclusive event series with in-depth presentations around transport and logistics procurement in Germany and Türkiye. „After the match is before the match“. The original supplychainmachine.com Tender Management Conference series will now return in its 6th edition to the MHP Arena Stuttgart in September/October 2024, the home stadium of VfB Stuttgart and one of the 2024 UEFA European Championship stadiums.


Full Speaker Line-Up

Volker Staab, Chief Quality Officer, Northvolt

Birol Sen, Senior Director Supply Chain and Head of Procurement, Sisecam

Fuat Pamukcu, Vice President of Sales, Marketing, Business Development and Strategy at the DFDS Mediterranean Business Unit

Dr. Döne Yalcin, Managing Partner of CMS Türkiye and the Head of CMS Sustainability for Austria and CEE

Rüchan Pehlivan, Market Analyst, MAHLE International

Jürgen Mast, Ex Senior Manager Mercedes-Benz Group AG and Senior Advisor supplychainmachine

Erich Bergmann, Sales Director, LKW WALTER Internationale Transportorganisation

Andreas Thuy, Vice President Supply Chain Technology & Digitalization, Schaeffler

Patrick Gueth, Head of Tender Management and Pricing. DP World

Enrico Schlick, Product Owner Transportation Data Cube, Schaeffler

Ralf-Charly Schultze, President, International Union for Road-Rail Combined Transport UIRR

Turhan Özen, C-Executive in Supply Chain and Aviation

Sencer Solakoglu, President TÜSEDAD and Managing Director Feyz Farm

Dr. Cagla Gül Senkardes, Assistant Professor and head of the Entrepreneurship in Technology and Innovation Department, Bilgi University Istanbul

Mehmet Yigit Altimark, Board Member and Managing Director, Sarp Intermodal

Joachim Hermanns, Team Manager Integrated Sales Automotive and Industrial Manufacturing North Europe Continent, Maersk

Manuel Friedlein, Head of Logistics Procurement, Brose

Murat Kavrar, Managing Director Greece and Türkiye and Vice President of Sales Central Eastern Europe, DHL Freight

Fabian Bodenbender, Senior Business Development Manager, Transporeon

Prof. Dr. Stefan Iskan, Professor for Logistics and Business Informatics with a special focus on Automotive Supply Chain Management and Digitization, University of Applied Sciences Ludwigshafen, Executive Management in Logistics and Automotive Industry, Founder supplychainmachine.com


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