FIRESIDE CHAT: Manufacturers Preparedness to COVID-19

In last month’s Shoplogix “Ask the Experts” series, we held an exclusive fireside chat with leading food and automotive manufacturing experts from Firestone Foods and Magna International. The discussion focused on manufacturers’ response to COVID-19 and strategies to adapt to changes in the economy, supply chains, and operations. As the industry now restarts manufacturers face challenges of setting the proper measures to ramp up production safely and efficiently. 

Join us for this month’s fireside chat featuring a panelist discussion with manufacturing leaders across the automotive, packaging, and steel industries to learn how manufacturers are restarting their operations to safeguard their employees and efficiently operate production facilities. It will be a conversation with real-world manufacturers championing change management across their operations to optimize output and thrive in the new normal.

You will learn:

  • How manufacturers developed new policies and work preparedness plans to restart operations
  • What policies manufacturers implemented to safeguard their employees to maintain output and morale
  • How manufacturers are evaluating their operations in the new normal to drive efficiency 
  • Strategies and best practices manufacturers are implementing today to invest in the future of their factories

About our panel:

Mark Sullivan
VP of Operations

With over 17 years of manufacturing operations experience in increasing plant profitability and reducing cost utilizing sound manufacturing systems, Mark is specialized in turnaround ventures adopting Lean Manufacturing tools. As Mauser’s plant manager, he has full P&L responsibility for the $93 million facility and has achieved corporate EDITDA goals through continuous improvements and cost reductions. Mark’s key to success is driven through leadership by example to challenge employees to enable root cause problem solving and behavior-based safety. Mark’s leadership has successfully driven $8.6 million of CAPEX projects and developed a safety committee and culture to reduce accident to 0 OSHA recordables.

Diego Castro
Assistant General Manager
Magna International, Cosma Division, Modatek Systems

With over 15 years of automotive manufacturing experience, Diego brings proven leadership skills, broadscale industry knowledge, and the integration of international best practices to his role as AGM of Modatek Systems with a focus on operational improvement. Throughout his career at Daimler Chrysler and Magna, Diego has managed teams of over 800 employees, led cross-functional new business teams to realize new profit streams, and optimized operational availability of equipment to increase productivity. Diego is an expert in Lean practices and has led the development and implementation of LEAN manufacturing processes, resulting in direct labor utilization and manufacturing overhead improvements; including testing standards to improve employee-wide quality consistency and the implementation of TWI with job instruction training as part of the LEAN plan.

Luis Ponte
Vice President & GM
Samuel, Son & Co.

Luis brings over 20 years of progressive operations and transportation experience to his role as Vice President of the Automotive Group and Kim Tam Logistics at Samuel & Sons, Co. He is responsible for the commercial and operational oversight focused on growth, alignment, and business development with OEM’s across North America. He drove Kim Tam’s growth strategy through integration with Automotive, Supply Chain, and Manufacturing business units by repositioning Kim Tam as a leading logistics service provider. Luis is an avid sports enthusiast; his hammer is his golf club, and he enjoys watching live sports; especially European soccer.

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