Navigating the Specialities Supply Chain amid complexities: On the road to success

With an extensive product portfolio, 2 state-of-theart manufacturing plants, and business partners in around 100 countries across the world, Raj Petro Specialities – a Brenntag Group company – is engaged in multi faceted petrochemical manufacturing and marketing. Such specialties are typically high value and highperformance products that tag along with them unique challenges and complexities in manufacturing as well as in processing stages. During this interview, we asked Sirhans Peshin, Senior Director – Supply Chain, Raj Petro Specialities about the secret for successfully operating the company’s supply chain operations, and providing innovative, customised solutions for a range of high-performance applications.

Q] How does the specialities’ supply chain work in general?

Supply chains in our field of business are complex and unpredictable. This is because the Specialities sector is exceptionally diverse in its range of products, its customer base, the spread and size of markets, and the challenging line of products that it handles. In fact, the Specialities’ supply chain network encompasses a wide range of elements – from global geopolitical impacts to very local issues that need to be addressed with deft handling.

The expanse of the supply chain includes raw material movements across the globe, handling bulk cargo movements at onshore terminals, manufacturing of hundreds of SKUs of varying technological and customer-specific needs at plants, and distribution across domestic and international markets, all while maintaining the highest standards of safety and product integrity throughout the entire value chain.

Q] What are some of the unique challenges in managing the supply chain for specialities, and how do you address them?

As a business, supply chain operations today face a mounting challenge mainly across three fronts – geopolitical scenarios, exceptional volatility in demand, and cost management. Since most of the raw materials are sourced from across the globe and linked to various oil and gas indices, this area of our operations is a constantly ticking alarm bell for the teams. Add to this, the demand variability across various industry verticals, based on their specific markets, seasonal needs, consumer segments, and overall market sentiment.

This has been even more exacerbated over the last few years, especially post-COVID, with varying degrees of volatility observed across multiple segments of the business. Above all, the cost management of our operations remains a mainstay for us since the competitiveness in the markets is heavily determined by this.

Most of these challenges are managed by the teams through a high degree of planning, including a deep understanding of the markets and their likely responses to various scenarios. This is supported by assessing the markets to both demand and supply side impacts and managing a balance between the two sides of the pendulum. Once these basics are in place, controlling the cost to serve is something that falls into place by applying the right levers on an everyday basis.

Q] How do you ensure safety and compliance while handling your products, and what measures are in place to mitigate any potential risks?

Safety is paramount in our line of business. As an organisation, we believe that safety is a non-negotiable rule. Our focus on the safety of people, products, and processes is an integral business priority, and not just a subject of operational control.

We take a diligent approach to evaluating risks across the business, using a variety of techniques. We also ensure that our people are competent and that we have the operational processes in place to eliminate or contain risks. We are committed to inculcating a culture of safety ownership…

This is the abridged version of Mr. Peshin’s interview that was published in the June issue of Logistics Insider magazine. To read the complete interview, click here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *