Quality Magazine

Ford Expands Global Network

February 28, 2011

DEARBORN, MI-As the new Ford Focus gets set to hit dealer showrooms across Europe and North America, Ford's global supply network is expanding to meet the needs of the vehicle's international launch.

Of the 310 suppliers in 22 countries making parts for the new Focus, many are adding jobs, facilities and equipment in local communities to produce the vehicle. Others have been able to maintain employment levels as a result of Focus sourcing. Among the major Focus suppliers alone, 5,500 jobs have been added at facilities in North America, Europe and Asia to produce parts for the new Focus.

"Suppliers are critical to the success of the new Focus, and they are stepping up to support Ford in this important launch," says Tony Brown, group vice president, Ford Global Purchasing.

Developed in Europe for sale in more than 120 markets worldwide, the new Focus is a key part of the One Ford plan to leverage the company's global assets. Production is under way at Ford's Saarlouis Assembly Plant in Germany and at Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich. New Focus production will be expanded to Ford's plant in St. Petersburg, Russia, later this year. Production in the Asia Pacific region will begin in 2012, when new Ford plants come on line in Chongqing, China and Rayong, Thailand.

Focus, which is part of the company's new global C-car platform, also sets new benchmarks for supplier component commonality. Eighty percent of the car's parts and components are common around the world. Three-quarters of the supply base for the new Focus will be the same at the five plants where the vehicle will ultimately be built. In addition, 65 percent of the value of Focus is sourced to suppliers in the Aligned Business Framework (ABF), the highest of any global vehicle. "The new Focus raises the bar for Ford and our suppliers in terms of common parts and global processes that will pay off with higher quality and lower costs," said Brown. "It also represents a new era in how we work with our supply base. The high level of communication, early information sharing and data transparency between Ford and our supply base is paying off for all of us as we move into the global launch."