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Revolutionizing Wind Turbine Nacelle Supply Chains: A Unimacts Success Story

By Zetwerk Editorial Team


04 January 2024
Wind Power
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In global supply chains, challenges often emerge unexpectedly, putting even the most established companies in precarious situations. A prominent European Wind Turbine OEM, found itself grappling with a sole-source predicament from a high-cost supplier for its substantial fiberglass wind turbine nacelles. The additional burden of intricate and expensive shipping processes compounded the challenge. This is where Zetwerk-Unimacts, a seasoned expert in supply chain optimization, stepped in to address the immediate issue and to revolutionize the entire supply chain paradigm.

The dynamics of global supply chains are in a constant state of flux. For our customers, this meant navigating the complexities of a sole-source situation with a supplier whose costs were reaching unsustainable heights. The product in question, fiberglass wind turbine nacelles, demanded specialized production and posed a logistical challenge due to their size and weight, making transportation an expensive endeavor. Recognizing the urgency and complexity of the issue, the European Wind Turbine OEM turned to Unimacts for a strategic solution.

Having built a rapport with the Zetwerk-Unimacts team through various successful projects, the Wind Turbine OEM sought their expertise in unraveling this intricate challenge. Zetwerk-Unimacts, known for its innovative problem-solving approach, identified a unique solution – a dormant fiberglass factory that had recently shut down. Seizing the opportunity, Zetwerk-Unimacts acquired and revived this facility, turning it into an asset for the customer’s supply chain needs.

The final solution crafted by Unimacts was a hybrid supply chain model that addressed the immediate concerns and laid the foundation for sustainable cost reduction and risk mitigation. The larger components of the wind turbine nacelles were now produced in the revived factory in Spain, capitalizing on local expertise and resources. Simultaneously, smaller components were sourced from a low-cost supplier in India. Unimacts managed the import of these smaller components and seamlessly integrated them into a kit assembly in Spain. The result was a comprehensive solution ready for delivery to the customer.

The impact of Zetwerk-Unimacts’ intervention was nothing short of transformative for the European Wind Turbine OEM. The hybrid supply chain model crafted by Unimacts not only resolved the immediate challenges but also unlocked a myriad of benefits:

  • 10% Cost Savings: By strategically leveraging the strengths of local production in Spain and tapping into the cost advantages offered by the Indian supplier, Unimacts enabled the Wind Turbine OEM to achieve a remarkable 10% reduction in costs. This addressed the financial strain caused by the sole-source situation and enhanced the overall competitiveness of the customer in the market.
  • De-Risking the Supply Chain: Introducing a local second source for production provided a safety net for the Wind Turbine OEM. The reliance on a single high-cost supplier was now diversified, reducing the vulnerability associated with a sole-source dependency. Unimacts’ strategic approach allowed the customer to mitigate risks and ensure a more resilient and robust supply chain.
  • Global Low-Cost Sourcing for New Products: Beyond resolving the immediate challenges, Unimacts’ intervention laid the groundwork for future scalability. The successful integration of components from a low-cost supplier in India demonstrated the feasibility of a global sourcing strategy. This presented opportunities for the Wind Turbine OEM to explore new product lines and provided a blueprint for diversifying their supply chain further.

The collaboration between Unimacts and the European Wind Turbine OEM exemplifies the power of innovative thinking in the realm of supply chain management. The successful resurrection of a dormant factory, coupled with the seamless orchestration of a hybrid supply chain addressed immediate concerns and positioned the customer for long-term success in a dynamic market. As industries continue to navigate the complexities of global supply chains, the Unimacts success story stands as a testament to the transformative potential of strategic collaboration and inventive problem-solving.