Global lead buyer organization in portfolio companies
Exploiting synergies by bundling the procurement activities of various subsidiaries
Our client is a medium-sized company that produces and sells products and solutions in industrial and welding technology. The company has a number of autonomous subsidiaries in other countries and the owner is a private equity company.
Objective: Identification of optimization potentials
In the pre-closing phase of the company takeover by the private equity company, we were asked to identify potential savings. The focus was on the analysis and the creation of a “road map” with which the company can implement the optimization process itself.
Approach: successful pilot projects
Due to the short time horizon and limited budget, the project team opted for a very pragmatic approach. During a three-day workshop with the company’s management and procurement officers as well as the largest subsidiaries, we were able to quickly bring transparency to the company’s own demand and cost structures. On this basis, the individual categories were simultaneously analyzed and a prioritization as well as a schedule were developed.
To achieve the potential, a lead buyer structure was designed and piloted for the first time. In workshops with the national CEOs and representatives of the private equity investor, it was initially important to strengthen commitment to the process of change and to jointly initiate lighthouse projects for the prioritized categories.
These pilots served to leverage initial savings potential, support the new lead buyers via a “training on the job” program and convince the national companies of the results achieved. In addition, this approach strengthened communication and cooperation between the individual local procurement departments, or in some cases even initiated it in the first place.
The pragmatic approach meant that we were able to initiate the transformation process in just five months and already achieve initial savings results. For the private equity company, this represents a decisive gain in time and efficiency.
Result: “Proof of concept” of the new organization
- Piloting lead buyer organization
- Structured action plans and reporting
- Rapid savings results through pilot projects
- Training of employees for their new role