Dominic La Caze from Riviera Marine Selected for Spolight Editorial in Australia's Best Manufacturing

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Riviera Marine have received a massive boost with the news that the company has been selected for a keynote feature in the highly-regarded publication, Australia's Best.

The editorial with Dominic La Caze was released in July 2008 and Riviera Marine were selected as a shining example of supply chain excellence within the industry.

Australia's largest and most awarded luxury boat builder, Riviera, operates from the largest facility of its kind in the southern hemisphere. The company produces a range of luxury cruisers including Open and Enclosed Flybridge models, Offshore Express cruisers, Sport Yachts and Sport Cruisers for markets in more than 30 countries around the world.

The company was founded in 1980, quickly expanded into two factories on the Gold Coast and then moved into its current 14-hectare purpose-built facility in 2000.

Rivieras, ranging from 33 to 70 feet in length, are built to order, taking between 78 and 91 days from the first layers of fibreglass in a hull mould to a gleaming finished boat ready to take its new owners to destinations in their local waterways or around Australia.

Efficient supply chain management is a key driver to the success of any company, and particularly for Riviera which manufactures high-value complex products.

With thousands of components as large as massive turbo diesel engines and as small as 24-volt light globes, on-time delivery from respected suppliers helps to deliver quality every time.

According to Dominic La Caze, Riviera's Supply Chain Manager, "Ensuring that production requirements are met satisfactorily is the main role of the supply chain group. 'Keeping boat builders working on boats' is our goal and this is why we need to consistently look to improve our supply chain processes."

Having all the supply chain functions such as warehousing, purchasing, production, distribution and planning integrated in a formalised structure ensures that the synergies created result in an improved output.

"Linking an integrated supply chain function with 'The Riviera Way' lean manufacturing process has meant substantial improvements in the way the team manages the production function. It has improved the visibility of problem areas and given us a specific framework to go forward with a continuous improvement focus."

Having suppliers who are close to and understand the Riviera business is critical to the company's ability to achieve its goals and objectives.

"Many of our suppliers have a long-term relationship with Riviera," explains La Caze. "They have grown with Riviera from the time we were a relatively small company located at Labrador to the current status as Australia's largest luxury boat builder

Riviera's suppliers range from multinational engine manufacturers supplying high-value engines to small businesses supplying consumables such as tape and paint. They extend from Europe and America to local suppliers around the South-east Queensland region. All have different procedures and expectations of their customer requirements.

"We continually improve our forecasting and planning processes, and this helps our vendors to better plan their inventory and delivery schedules. The result is more on-time deliveries and smoother production processes, allowing Riviera to concentrate resources on value-adding tasks," says La Caze.

When assessing suppliers, Riviera plans for long-term relationships with its suppliers. Because of this the company considers potential suppliers' risk profile, range and depth of product range, current customer base, planning ability, pricing, service and warranty capability.

"We look for suppliers who are interested in providing new products, reviewing and developing supply chain processes, collaborating and sharing information - regardless of the simplicity or complexity of the product or service they provide," attains La Caze. "We have high expectations of suppliers. If we can develop ethical, open and commercial relationships with suppliers, we have the basic structure for strong, mature partnerships."

Key suppliers to Riviera Marine include Sure Power Industries, Seabreeze Industries and OCV Reinforcements

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CHRIS DUTTON
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