LEGO: CONSOLIDATING DISTRIBUTION (A)
Two years after joining the LEGO Group as their Logistics Manager for Europe and Asia, Egil M ller Nielsen finds himself fighting several battles at different fronts; the most difficult one on his home turf against his own management team. He is half-way implementing a bold plan: close down all existing local and regional logistics operations and consolidate all logistics and distribution activities from a central location in the Czech Republic, managed by an external partner - DHL. Outsourcing logistics services on a scale like this - in East-Europe - had never been done before by any other European company. The stakes are high as LEGO, struggling for survival, is also trying to re-invent itself. Should Nielsen push through his plan - in which he firmly believes - or give in to the mounting pressure from home and relax his efforts? Learning objectives: We observe two new partners, both active on new, unexplored territory in the early stages of their partnership. The relationship is strained; both companies are under tremendous pressure from their corporate headquarters to show results while there is a general distrust in each others capacity and motivation. In this first case we learn that building a relationship that is based only on a contractual agreement can be a painful experience. Cost accounting in general and cost drivers in specific are mentioned to illustrate their importance in key decision making.