Honda recently honored 16 suppliers that provide indirect products and services to five Honda automotive plants in Ohio and Indiana. Driven by record auto production in North America in 2014, Honda also announced that purchasing for Maintenance, Repair and Operational (MRO) services in the Central Region set a record of $1.5 billion for the fiscal year ending March 2015.
The MRO purchasing milestone resulted in the production of 905,485 automobiles in the region at three auto plants in Marysville and East Liberty, Ohio, and Greensburg, Ind. MRO purchasing also supports operations of Honda’s engine plant in Anna, Ohio and transmission plant in Russells Point, Ohio.
Different from suppliers that provide parts and materials for the mass production of Honda products, the more than 5,000 MRO suppliers support Honda plants by providing a wide variety of equipment, products and services that support the manufacturing of automobiles, as well as their engines and transmissions. These companies include local businesses as well as national companies, and many have grown along with the expansion of Honda’s automobile manufacturing in North America since Honda began U.S. auto production at the Marysville Auto Plant in 1982.
“Indirect suppliers support nearly every aspect of our business,” said Tom Lake, vice president for Purchasing at Honda North America, “The 16 suppliers recognized today have truly gone above and beyond, providing extraordinary support to Honda in 2014. We never could have achieved so much in a single year without their strong efforts.”
In 2014, Honda manufactured a record 1.8 million automobiles in North America, which led to the purchase of $26.3 billion in parts and materials in the region from 713 parts suppliers, also an all-time annual record. Parts purchasing for Honda plants in Indiana and Ohio last year totaled $11.9 billion from suppliers in North America, including more than 200 in Ohio and Indiana.
The 16 award winning suppliers were honored for achievements in the categories of Special Recognition, Outstanding Value, Performance Excellence and Supplier of the Year at a ceremony at the Honda Heritage Center in Marysville, Ohio.
Bill Easdale, vice president of Honda of America Mfg., Inc., talked to suppliers about the importance on the new Technical Development Center at the Honda Heritage Center and the importance placed on making sure associates are prepared for the high-tech manufacturing challenges of the future.
“We are committed to innovation and continuous improvement,” Easdale said. “So, as technology changes we often replace equipment and you can see that in all of our plants which remain state of the art even decades after beginning production.”
Easdale continued, “But our spirit of renewal is completely different with people. As the technologies in our products and in our processes become more complex, we don’t replace our associates,” he said. “We help them develop new skills. In this way they, too, stay current with this fast-changing industry.”