Volkswagen Group has a new head of global vehicle logistics, as Markus Lange has taken over the role from Andrea Eck (pictured), who is now responsible for the Logistics Campus at the Volkswagen Academy, a training and innovation centre.
Markus Lange is now the head of outbound for Volkswagen Konzernlogistik (group logistics), the Wolfsburg-based management arm responsible for the carmaker’s inbound and outbound planning and purchasing. Lange, who has been with Volkswagen since 1996, was previously head of the press and stamping plant at Wolfsburg, the group’s largest global factory.
Andrea Eck has been a fixture for Volkswagen Group’s global vehicle logistics for much of the past decade. She took over as head of outbound and containers for what was then Volkswagen Logistics in 2006, the carmaker’s in-house transport company that was later integrated into a group function. Prior to vehicle logistics, Eck had plant-based logistics roles at Volkswagen’s plants in Portugal and later in Emden, Germany.
Over the past decade, Eck has led the carmaker’s vehicle logistics at a time of tremendous expansion, rising from eight to 12 brands (including the addition of Porsche, MAN and Scania), and a near doubling of volume to around 10m units per year, with model variety growing from around 90 to more than 330.
Speaking to Finished Vehicle Logistics in autumn last year, Eck pointed in particular to the rise in complexity of the group’s vehicle flows and distribution in emerging markets. “With the increases in volume, production sites and models, we have to constantly monitor and make adjustments along the supply chain to ensure production operations stay on schedule and vehicles are delivered to our customers on time,” she said. “Volatile markets like Brazil and India have certainly challenged our distribution network for the past few years.”
Despite the carmaker’s ongoing diesel emissions scandal and recall, Eck also pointed to the group’s ambition and success in reducing emissions and pollution across the supply chain. As part of a stated target or reducing CO2 emissions per unit produced by 25% between 2010 and 2018, lowering carbon emissions and waste in outbound logistics have been an important part of the group’s planning and network design, she said.
To that end, she pointed to innovations that have included the use of more regional hubs in Europe that have supported an increased use of train transport, as well as the introduction in Europe of the Schiebebühne (traverser) rail wagon loading technique for empty loading at factories.
According to a spokesperson, Eck will continue to push forward future logistics developments and track trends at the Logistics Campus.
Markus Lange will report to Thomas Zernechel, head of logistics. His counterpart for global material logistics and containers is Astrid Lühring.
The change in vehicle logistics at Volkswagen now means that there have been changes to the long-term management leadership for vehicle logistics at the three large German carmakers. Since October 1st, Monica Schmickler has been senior manager of worldwide vehicle transportation at Daimler, taking over from Egon Christ, who had led the company’s outbound logistics since 2002. This March, Peter Hoerndlein is taking over as general manager for plant dispatch and vehicle distribution at the BMW Group, as Mathias Wellbrock, who has worked in the OEM’s outbound logistics since 2007, takes on a new role in Mexico.