Brewer shifts procurement to low-cost countries

6 March 2006
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06 March 2006 | Rebecca Ellinor

Belgian brewer InBev is moving some of its procurement activities to the Czech Republic and Hungary.

The move, which will be carried out in two phases this year, is expected to result in around 360 job losses from InBev's Western Europe operations. The company has not announced any reductions in staff numbers in the UK, but a spokeswoman told supplymanagement.com the UK should also expect job losses.

Under the plans, purchase orders, invoice matching and payment, data and performance reporting and data management will be carried out at a shared service centre in one of the two - or possibly both - countries. InBev said the exact details were yet to be worked out.

The firm said in a statement: "The goal is to create a single, integrated cross-functional organisation that's able to deliver a greater focus on the consumer, customer and supply chain."

It hopes the move will also free up resources to invest in its brands, sales and supply work. It said this was "vitally important" particularly because of the challenging trading environment in Western Europe, where beer consumption has fallen.

As well as establishing the two service centres, the company plans to outsource its business systems area. This is responsible for strategy, demand and programme management and project delivery - including the development and implementation of new business applications and improvements.



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