A strong network for the supply industry

The Supply Chain Excellence (SCE) initiative offers advice and gives the aerospace supply industry a chance to network. At ILA Berlin it presented its main activities.

At the time of the Supply Chain Excellence Initiative’s (SCE) launch at ILA Berlin in 2014 many of the developments which the aerospace supply industry now has to contend with could not have been foreseen. Speaking at the panel discussion entitled ’Together we develop supply chain management to excellence’, Prof. Dr. Andreas Timmermann from the Berlin-Brandenburg Aerospace Alliance (BBAA) and project manager for the SCE, said “Covid had a big impact on the industry“. Building partnerships for climate-neutral aviation he sees as being an urgent issue, but also the need to examine other business areas, wind power for example. 

As a regional and national organisation, the SCE sees itself as giving suppliers an opportunity to network with other companies, industry players, policymakers and research institutions. To date, around 100 specialist events and workshops have taken place with 3,200 participants from 2,300 companies, Andreas Timmermann said. Small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) were the backbone of the supply industry, with whom the SCE maintained close relations. His experience was that one could achieve more together and that the participants benefited from each other. Pressing issues included globalisation, HR developments and securing staff, as well as digitalisation, research and development, contract law and financing options. 

Regional expertise

Christopher Busch of the Baden-Württemberg Aerospace Forum was of the same opinion. Future Aviation was a key player in the region with its testing area for urban unmanned aircraft. The network’s activities were important for offering SMEs early information on the technical innovations that universities and research institutions were working on. His association had also undertaken a project with Tunisia to establish an “atlas of expertise“.  He organised workshops and provided contacts, including across sectors.

Jan E. Bode, head of the Aerospace Project Executing Organisation at the German Aerospace Center (DLR), had information on financing options for supply industry SMEs. His department was the place to contact at national and European level. It brought the respective players together on the latest issues and gave administrative advice to SMEs regarding applications for DLR development programmes. Furthermore, it organised information events, networking conferences, themed dossiers and guidebooks, as well as industry events and news for aerospace suppliers.