Dan Knott, Senior Vice President, Purchasing & Supplier Quality, Chrysler Group LLC, to focus on expanding opportunities and economic impact of minority suppliers in Michigan as Council Chair
Company reports unprecedented increase in minority sourcing in 2011, credits innovative new initiative for Company’s increase in minority supplier participation
Chrysler Group announced today that Dan Knott, Senior Vice President, Purchasing & Supplier Quality will serve as Chair of the Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council (MMSDC) through 2013. In this role, Knott will provide leadership to the organization’s efforts to expand opportunities and economic impact of minority suppliers in the State of Michigan.
The MMSDC is one of 37 regional councils affiliated with the National Minority Supplier Development Council. MMSDC is a privately funded, non-profit, corporate services organization that provides unique procurement opportunities to corporate members and certified Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs). MMSDC provides ongoing growth opportunities, financial support, and training and education for its corporate members and for Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs).
“Diversity of thought breeds innovation, and innovation is what will ensure a sustainable future for Michigan industry,” said Knott. “I am very pleased to join forces with the MMSDC to continue to develop and support Michigan’s minority supply base.”
Chrysler Group has long been considered a leader in minority sourcing and development. Since 1983, the Company has purchased more than $45 billion from minority-owned companies and continues to develop innovative new programs to build its minority supply base, such as its annual Matchmaker program designed to foster business relationships between the Company’s minority and Tier 1 suppliers.
In 2011, Chrysler Group implemented a new initiative, called the High Focus Program, to encourage Tier 1 suppliers to reflect Chrysler Group’s corporate value to support greater supplier diversity. The High Focus Program is a structured process that brings new tools to assist Tier 1 suppliers develop their own sustainable supplier diversity strategies, and to foster access to strong MBEs and women-owned businesses nationally and internationally. In just its first year, the High Focus Program increased Chrysler Group’s annual minority supplier spend by $168 million.
“Chrysler’s supplier diversity program goes beyond just sourcing to minority companies,” said Knott. “We have developed a program that gives our Tier 1 suppliers the tools to meet our rigorous goals and nurtures the minority suppliers so that they are stronger, healthier and more able to compete.”
In 2011, Chrysler Group spent $4 billion with Tier 1 and Tier 2 minority suppliers representing 15.7 percent of its total annual purchasing. This represented a $1.4 billion increase compared to 2010. The company’s 2012 Tier 1 and Tier 2 supplier minority sourcing goal is 16.5 percent. Chrysler Group’s women-owned business sourcing goal in 2012 is 3 percent.
About Chrysler’s Diversity Supplier Development (DSD) Program
Chrysler’s DSD website (http://supplierdiversity.chrysler.com) serves as a resource to minority suppliers seeking information regarding Chrysler’s diversity supplier program. The website allows minority suppliers to register as a potential supplier to Chrysler. In turn, Chrysler then reviews profiles of suppliers’ capabilities to meet specific global sourcing needs.
In 2000, Chrysler conducted the first annual Matchmaker event. Matchmaker events are designed to “match” minority and Chrysler Tier I suppliers together in order to establish new business relationships and opportunities. Since its inception, Matchmaker programs have generated more than $1.3 billion in new business opportunities for minority suppliers.
About Chrysler Group's Leadership Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
Recognized as a leader in promoting diversity throughout its enterprise, Chrysler Group was named one of the "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers” by Working Mother magazine 12 times, and has been recognized six times by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as one of the country's leading corporations supporting diversity and inclusion. Chrysler Group has been named to HispanicBusiness magazine's annual Diversity Elite 60 list for implementing strategies to reach more Hispanic customers and to pursue more business with minority- and Hispanic-owned suppliers.
In March 2011, the editors of DiversityInc magazine named Chrysler Group to the magazine's 2011 list of "Top 50 Companies for Diversity." This coveted annual benchmark is comprised of companies the magazine's editors believe are diversity-management leaders. This was the fifth year since the list was established in 2001 that Chrysler has been included. In April 2011, Chrysler Group was named among the nation's "Top Supporters" of Engineering Programs of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, recognizing the Company's efforts to develop, recruit and hire talented students pursuing technical careers at the nation's minority-serving institutions.
Over the years, a long line of Chrysler Group employees have received important professional recognition from various diversity organizations, including Black Engineer of the Year, Women of Color, HENAAC Great Minds in STEM and others, reflecting the Company’s strong commitment to developing its diverse workforce.
About Chrysler Group LLC
Chrysler Group LLC, formed in 2009 to establish a global strategic alliance with Fiat S.p.A., produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram, Mopar, SRT and Fiat vehicles and products. With the resources, technology and worldwide distribution network required to compete on a global scale, the alliance builds on Chrysler Group’s culture of innovation, first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925, and Fiat’s complementary technology that dates back to its founding in 1899.
Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Mich., Chrysler Group’s product lineup features some of the world's most recognizable vehicles, including the Chrysler 300 and Town & Country, Jeep Wrangler, Dodge Durango, Ram 1500, Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 and Fiat 500. Fiat contributes world-class technology, platforms and powertrains for small- and medium-size cars, allowing Chrysler Group to offer an expanded product line including environmentally friendly vehicles.
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