Asahi manufacturing success on firm foundations

Forum member Anna Reid, General Manager of Manufacturing of Asahi Beverages, explains building a smart value chain is key to success. She spoke at National Manufacturing Week today.

Undoubtedly, there are numerous factors that contribute to a manufacturing company being a leader.

The fundamental attributes that have contributed to our business success, include having a clear strategic plan, a strong record of consistent and profitable growth, continued strong investment across Australia to improve our manufacturing and distribution facilities, improving efficiency across all areas of the business, driving continued innovation across the business, differentiating ourselves from competitors to attract great talent and having an extensive portfolio of great brands that Australians know and love.

We are proud to be manufacturing in Australia and manufacturing some of the nation’s most loved brands, including Schweppes, Solo, Asahi Super Dry, Pepsi, Gatorade, Cottee’s cordials, Spring Valley, and Vodka Cruiser.

Although we are a relatively young company, having been formed in 2014, we have a rich history through our various integrated businesses, which have been acquired by Asahi Group Holdings.

We have taken a mature journey approach, with a focus on building strong foundations to leverage future development of our operations.

This involved developing an adoption plan across our supply chain, looking beyond technology to new skills and IT infrastructure, while working to strengthen existing processes to support reliability.

Major technological innovations are fueling significant change throughout the world, with the manufacturing industry embracing the inter-connectivity of new and emerging technology or ‘Smart Manufacturing’ and ‘Industry 4.0’.

At Asahi, we’ve been building a strong collaborative partnership between our business’ information technology and operational technology functions to ensure we have the right infrastructure backbone.

We’ve also focused on digitising our factories in a structured way to achieve data standardisation and optimisation, which offers real-time analytics.

Additionally, the agile learning approach we’ve adopted, focusing on process improvement and deliberate experimentation, coupled with embedding a problem-solving mindset amongst our employee base, have also been key contributors to our success.

Anna Reid is the General Manager for Manufacturing at Asahi Beverages. Anna oversees 10 factories across Australia and New Zealand with approximately 800 employees, and producing over 135 million cases of alcohol and non-alcohol beverages annually. Anna also oversees the Asahi Beverages Supply Chain Academy. Prior to working for Asahi, Anna worked for HJ Heinz and George Weston Foods in Manufacturing Operations and Continuous Improvement roles. Anna is currently a member of both the Victorian Advanced Manufacturing Advisory Council and the Swinburne Manufacturing Futures Research Institute Advisory Committee.

Picture: Asahi

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