SCMC start-up success

SCMC start-up success

Executive Summary
The Coca-Cola Supply Chain Management Company (SCMC) is the largest noncarbonated beverages (NCB) manufacturer worldwide, with 12 sites across China, 10 of which are successfully implementing TRACC to power their world class operations (WCO) efforts. These 10 sites are in various stages of maturity with their WCO programs. Based on success at other SCMC plants, the management team of the greenfield site, Foshan in Guangdong, set an ambitious goal of getting the site’s pilot line running at 90% machine efficiency within the first three months. Many sites take up to 12 months to reach full capacity, so achieving this goal would equate to significant savings from efficiency gains. As a result of their efforts, not only did they reach this goal, but they also achieved significant savings in water and electricity consumption.


The new Foshan plant comprises three NCB production lines and a carbonated beverage production line. It has a total production capacity of 800 000 tons per year, with a design capacity of 1.6 million tons per year. Once the site achieves full capacity, the Foshan plant will become Coca-Cola’s largest plant in Asia.

Equipment installed at the Foshan plant uses the most advanced technology, and the fastest aseptic beverage production equipment. New and advanced technology would pose a tough challenge as teams would need to be quickly upskilled on its use and maintenance. Moreover, being a greenfield site, the vast majority of the 180 employees — coming from other industries — would be operating aseptic beverage production equipment for the first time. The big challenge for the site was for the start-up to run as seamlessly and as smoothly as possible.

To this end, the management team set an ambitious goal for the teams to work toward, which was to achieve 90% mechanical efficiency on the pilot line within 90 days of the start-up.

Since Coca-Cola SCMC had made an organization-wide decision in 2005 to implement WCO across all of its sites, the Foshan plant was well supported in their WCO efforts. These plants are progressing well on their journey to world class, with best practices being commonplace. This bodes well for any SCMC greenfield sites, as it enables them to send their employees on internships at well-developed sites, so these new employees learn best practices from the very beginning.

Their main goal was to achieve 90% mechanical efficiency on the pilot line within 90 days of the start-up.SCMC start-up success

New employees at the Foshan plant were therefore sent to SCMC’s Dongguan plant to complete a 3-month internship. During this internship, not only would they learn about the organization’s WCO culture and efforts, but they would also gain in-depth production knowledge and experience of that site’s daily operations. Once these employees were trained up, and with the consent of Dongguan management and teams, it was agreed that one of the site’s production lines would be operated solely by Foshan plant employees for a full month. This was to ensure that the teams understood all they had learned, and were able to perform autonomously in the way that would be expected of them at their new Foshan site.

Once the internships were complete, the site management team back at the Foshan plant decided that a great way of starting off on a good footing was to host a WCO Launch Ceremony and Pilot Line Start-up Mobilization Conference. The objective of the ceremony and conference would be to ensure that all employees understood the importance of WCO to the daily operations of the site.

Senior executives and factory management from the Coca-Cola SCMC Southern China Region were in attendance, and all employees participated.

The main agenda of the conference included:

  • a video review of the construction process of the new plant from a wasteland to a busy production facility
  • plant manager outlooks to share the plant’s vision
  • employee career development paths, communicated by the HR Manager
  • the implementation strategy, plan, and structures, introduced by the Factory WCO facilitator
  • the SSC oath taken by the Site Steering Committee, where they pledged: “I will make every effort to promote the plant change, providing all the necessary resources to fulfill duties of the Steering Committee with persistence, leading the Foshan team to achieve the vision!”
  • the plant Implementation Task Force and internal trainer teams also taking the oath
  • the Pilot line teams accepting pendants and taking the oath

After a question and answer session, a production site 5S exercise was conducted.

SCMC start-up successResults
Hosting the launch event and conference embedded a very strong WCO implementation atmosphere plant-wide from the very start. Within the first four months of operations, the Foshan plant achieved plant performance that is usually only reached within at least one year, and in this way realized huge financial savings.

It is wonderful that our sites can learn from one another, making the gains that much more exponential.

In the past year, many employees at the Foshan plant were promoted from operators to technicians, engineers or team leaders. Some team leaders have been promoted to line leaders, one line leader has been promoted to production department supervisor, and one department manager has been promoted to plant manager. Many problem-solving experts have been trained and qualified across all areas of the plant. Said plant manager, Gao Dai, “Owing to the fact that WCO has been successfully implemented at so many SCMC sites already, our teams were lucky enough to gain hands-on training during their internships at their brother plant. We believe that giving them the opportunity to experience WCO first-hand at another site, has been a huge contributor to our site achieving its start-up goals so quickly. In this way, it is wonderful that our sites can learn from one another, making the gains that much more exponential.”

Mechanical efficiency of the production line is stable above 90%, and the site has achieved the following water and electricity efficiencies:

Aseptic Beverage Lines FY 1 FY 2 FY 3
Water Usage Rate (L/L) 3.30 3.29 2.06
Electricity Usage Rate (kWh/L) 0.09 0.07 0.04


Company Background
Coca-Cola Supply Chain Management Company (SCMC) is the largest noncarbonated beverages (NCB) manufacturer worldwide. In the Chinese market, it is the largest NCB company, with rapidly increasing demand. Of their 12 sites across China, 10 of them are implementing TRACC to power their world class operations (WCO) efforts. At the end of 2010, Coca-Cola SCMC built a new plant in Foshan, Guangdong. Foshan can be found in the northern part of the Pearl River, about 20 kilometers outside of Guangzhou in Guangdong Province. It forms part of an economic zone shared with its counterparts to the south, Hong Kong and Macau.


This resource has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only, and does not constitute professional advice. You should not act upon the information contained herein without obtaining specific professional advice. Competitive Capabilities International (CCi) does not accept or assume any liability, responsibility or duty of care for any consequences of you or anyone else acting, or refraining to act, in reliance on the information contained in this resource or for any decision based on it.

Get more insights like this delivered straight to your inbox.