Nissan solves storage problem at Sunderland
Nissan is using a temporary storage solution at its Sunderland plant in the UK to house axles being used on Juke and Qashqai vehicles made at the plant, as well as the new generation Leaf electric vehicle, production of which was officially launched at the end of March.

The 2,000-square-metre aluminium building is provided by Spaciotempo, a UK-based company that designs and manufactures off-the-shelf and bespoke temporary buildings for hire or purchase. Nissan has bought the warehouse outright.

Spaciotempo already provides storage solutions for Nissan’s suppliers based in Sunderland.

“Five years ago we extended the axle plant to accommodate Qashqai production but in order to increase production further we needed to find further space to install two new welding lines,” said Darrell Stansfield, senior engineer at Nissan Sunderland plant. “We decided we would use the space currently used to store the axles, which meant we needed to find somewhere else to keep them in turn. We considered two options: an extension to the existing plant or storing the parts off-site, neither of which proved suitable.”

Stansfield turned to Spaciotempo instead, which makes and supplies the buildings at its Midlands headquarters. The temporary building, which was in place within a matter of weeks, was completed at the end of the last year allowing for the transference of the axles in preparation for the installation of the production lines for the March start on the Leaf.

“Having already supplied a number of Nissan’s contractors, we are very pleased to have been able to provide Nissan with extra, tailor-made storage capacity,” said Scott Jameson, director of sales at Spaciotempo.

“Expansion is excellent news for a company, but running out of room can be a real problem, because of the cost of building new facilities, re-locating or storing stock elsewhere,” he added. “However, if the company has a spare patch of land, a temporary building can solve these problems at a fraction of the cost, with a minimum of disruption and within a matter of weeks.”

To ensure that it fitted in with Nissan’s development policy of dividing the plant’s floor space into 18-metre span bays, the temporary building’s framework was created in bespoke six metre sections, rather than Spaciotempo’s standard five metres.

Nissan is the latest carmaker to have invested in one of Spaciotempo’s temporary building, following Peugeot, Land Rover and Aston Martin.

VW India unit to export parts to Malaysia
Volkswagen India has set up a parts and components business unit to manufacture and package Vento and Polo vehicle parts for export from its Pune plant to Malaysia.

The carmaker has invested Rs 56 crore ($10.4m) in the unit at the Pune plant.

The company had no specific figures on export volumes stating it was currently in the ramp up phase of production and would be able to provide the required parts according to market demand.

“In terms of production we already had the capacity to produce the extra parts,” said a spokesperson for VW Group India. “Apart from that, we have a new warehouse that includes all the storage, racking and shelving, packaging and dispatching setup.”

Volkswagen said it is working with Schnellecke Jeena for logistics support in the supply of the parts from Pune to Malaysia.

Schnellecke Jeena is also handling containerised vehicle exports for Hyundai from its plant in Chennai. The contract involves overseas shipments of the i10, i20 and Eon. Last December Schnellecke India developed a frame onto which the vehicles are fitted, loaded into the container and secured. Loading is optimised to include four i20s, five i10s, and five Eons in one 40-foot container.

LKQ buyout merges Euro Car Parts and Sator Holding
Euro Car Parts, the UK’s largest passenger car and van parts distributor, has announced it is merging with Sator Holding, a vehicle parts distributor based in the Netherlands. The merger will form one of the largest aftermarket parts organisations in Europe with annual sales estimated to be more than €1 billion ($1.3 billion).

“We intend to use this power and world-sourcing capability to drive down the cost of car parts, to the benefit of Europe’s hard-pressed motorists and fleet operators,” said Sukhpal Singh Ahluwalia, managing director of Euro Car Parts parent company LKQ Europe.

LKQ Corporation, which is funding the merger, is the largest provider of aftermarket and recycled collision replacement parts and refurbished collision replacement products in the US and Canada, and is buying Sator from H2 Equity Partners for $268.4m.

“LKQ Corporation’s formula is to back existing management teams and to help them realise their market potential,” said Ahluwalia “I am therefore delighted that Sator’s CEO and co-founder, Mr Adriaan Roggeveen, has agreed to join the LKQ Europe management team in his current position, on a permanent basis, and will report to me.”

Sator Holding was established in 2005 by the merger of the previous Van Heck Group and the Kroymans Parts Group. It has more than 800 employees and distributes from 11 warehouse locations in Netherlands, Belgium and Northern France, with combined floor space of 65,000-square metres.. Sator’s sales turnover in 2012 was €288m and is now forecast to increase that in the current year.

LKQ acquired Euro Car Parts from Ahluwalia in 2011 for £225m ($349m) plus and additional payment of £55m, subject to performance in 2012 and 2013. Euro Car Parts has maintained an annual sales growth of well over 30. LKQ have invested substantially in Euro Car Parts’ UK operations, including the opening of 42 new branches and a 10,600-square-metre specialised distribution facility for collision parts.

K+N set up in Vladivostok
Kuehne + Nagel has set up an office in Russia’s Far Eastern port city Vladvostok for the management of inbound freight movements, including those for the automotive industry, confirmed a spokesperson for the company.

“Our new office in Vladivostok provides the opportunity to strengthen and streamline the operational processes and to offer new services such as a direct access to the Russian market from the Far East rather than via Europe,” said Perry Neumann, managing director for Kuehne + Nagel Russia and Belarus.

The company did not provide further details on the automotive business involved.

Kuehne + Nagel initially set up on the Russian East Coast in 2002 with an office at Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk on the adjacent Sakhalin Oblast, supporting the oil and gas industry. It is now a leading provider of tailor-made solutions for that industry with a total of three locations according to the company.

Jungheinrich celebrates 50 years in UK
Material handling supplier Jungheinrich is celebrating its 50th year of the business in the UK this year. In addition to its headquarters in Milton Keynes the company operates six service centres in England.

 “We are very proud to have reached such a significant milestone in the UK and are looking forward to our next half century working closely with our customers,” said Hans-Herbert Schultz, managing director of Jungheinrich UK.

“As a group, Jungheinrich is continuously innovating to ensure that our products, solutions and after-sales service support enable our customers to achieve maximum supply chain efficiency and profitability – regardless of their size and the industry sectors in which they operate,” added Shultz.