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Vipin Sekar Chandrasekar

IMIM

Passport No.: H2877422

International Management in Local Context


STEF
As a part of the course in International Management in Local Context, we
were taken to a company called STEF. STEF is an European specialist in
cold storage handling and logistics with its headquarters in Paris, France.
Mr. Francis Lemor, the current president of the company, created STEF in
1920. They are the major operators in France and almost in every
supermarket we go in France, we can see STEFs prominent presence.
They are expanding to other European countries like Belgium, Spain,
France, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal and Switzerland.
STEFs core business values are Design, Deploy, Run &
Improve. They provide supply chain
solutions for temperature sensitive
goods like agro food products. They
are a self sustained company owning
almost 90% of the warehouses which is a rare phenomenon in this
industry. Financially, they have a turnover of about 2.7 Billion euros and
are run with the help of about 15500 employees. The important aspect of
the organization of STEF is that 69.8% of capital is held by the
management and the employees, making it literally a company run by its
people. They are really strong in their field and have a growth turnover of
about 5.3%.
STEF has its presence in three main fields :
1. Transports
2. Logistics Services
3. Information Systems
Business wise, the warehouse at Alcala is a 100% frozen platform where
they can freeze the products to a maximum of -23 oC. The temperature
activity for different products varies from 74% - chilled, 11% dry and 15%
frozen. It is also an environmentally friendly warehouse by having no
carbon dioxide emissions.
We were given a brief account on what the company is and its values and
then we had a tour of the warehouse. We were given thermal wear to
wear and shoe guards before entering the facility. We were guided in to
the warehouse where the temperature was nearly -23 oC. The old and the
new system of rack handling systems was interesting to see. The old
system had magnetic guides on the ground which enabled the fork lifts to
move only in one direction in a straight line, while the new system had
moving racks which enabled efficient handling of the goods. We were
given a brief account of the color coding and numbering of the racks for
the machines to pick up the order from the lot. It was intriguing to see the
color and number coding of the racks as it was constantly changing in
order for the employees not get accustomed to it. The employees working
inside the facility were supposed to take a break for 15 minutes for every
45 minute of work by regulation. The Alcala facility was run by 100
employees and can handle 40000 boxes per day and has a storage
capacity of about 18300 pallets.

Vipin Sekar Chandrasekar

IMIM

Passport No.: H2877422

STEFs major customer are the industry like Nestl, Hagen-Dazs,


Unilever, Pescanova etc. They also serve to GMS like Dia, Lidl and Condis
and also to mid market companies like Rolland, PLN and WRIGLEY.
STEF also has a graduate program in which we have to work for two years
and gain experience in almost all fields of operations in the company.
Overall, the STEF visit was a very interesting one and we got so many
intriguing information on the nuances of working of a cold storage
logistics company. Supply chain management is a vital management
concept and STEF being a pioneer in the said field gave us much needed
exposure on the same.