To all Jacobi customers,
As promised, this is to update you on the current situation at Jacobi Carbons and the way we are managing the consequences of the Corona crisis, making sure our people are safe and that we serve you the best way we can. We believe that it is important to keep you updated regularly, as the situation is very dynamic, and communication is key to find solutions for the joint challenges we are facing. That is why I will continue my weekly updates until the situation has normalized again.
Your Jacobi representative will stay in close touch with you to understand your changing needs and communicate about any potential supply delays, making sure that we can continue meeting your needs. Pro-active communication is of absolute importance to make sure we can anticipate and serve you best.
Our facilities in China continue to be fully operational. This has a positive impact on the availability of all our coal-based products, our chemical wood-based products and our ion exchange resins sourced in China. Our Quality lab in Tianjin is also fully operational, making sure that the Quality is secured.
The situation in Europe continues to be difficult. Curfews in France, Italy, Spain and Germany are still in place, causing a slow-down in the economy. However, our teams are coping with the situation and working closely with the authorities to continue operating in a safe manner. In Italy and France, we are considered a “critical industry” by the authorities, serving Drinking Water-, Food-, Pharma-, Power generation and Respirator mask applications. I am impressed to see how well our teams follow Government instructions on hygiene and social distancing, and how well they learn from each other. Our sites in the UK, Sweden, Spain and Germany continue to be fully operational.
In the USA, our processing plant and warehouse in Columbus OH continue to be operational, following the Government rules for hygiene and social distancing. In spite of restrictions imposed in certain States to control the situation, we are able to keep our warehouses operational, which enables us to keep up with supply. We are closely monitoring port activity and shipping lines as well and have contingency plans in place in case we face a sudden lock down situation.
As you know, most of our production plants are in Asia. Our sites in India, Sri Lanka, China, Vietnam, the Philippines and Japan work closely together to make sure that we secure supply, within the strict constraints imposed by the local authorities, and the need to protect our employees.
• Sri Lanka; Last week, the authorities imposed a strict lock-down in our district to contain the spread of a COVID19 cluster. Yesterday (April 3), we received authorization to start shipping finished goods and we are currently in the process of getting Government approval to restart skeleton operation by the middle of next week. This was possible, thanks to our plan to operate under very strict hygiene rules, and to our efforts to explain to the authorities the essential nature of our business.
• In India, a country wide lock down is in place until April 14th. However, we have seen some relaxations and having carefully considered the Government guidelines, our employees’ health and safety and the situation of the local communities, we have decided to restart our 2 factories under skeleton operations today (April 4) with strict and systematic hygiene and social distancing rules. The movement of people and supply of goods are still limited and strictly controlled, but we will endeavour to resume shipments as quickly as possible, and we plan to ramp up the production over the next 2 weeks. Unfortunately, our supply of ion exchange resins from India may still be temporarily disrupted.
• In the Philippines, Vietnam and Japan, we are currently operating at full capacity, but under challenging conditions, as we are experiencing logistics disruptions in the supply of raw materials. Our manufacturing teams across the world are fully motivated and ready to work under these difficult conditions to ensure the continuity of our most essential activities.
Temporary Price Surcharge
While our Supply Chain team is re-allocating production in the best way possible to mitigate the forced shut-downs, we face disruptions in the supply chain/logistics, and incur additional costs to secure supply. That is why we have to implement an immediate – but temporary – surcharge on the prices of our complete product portfolio. Your representative will be in touch with you in the coming week with the details. This will be implemented as of April 10, 2020. For now, this measure will be valid for Q2. In the course of June, we will decide whether or not the surcharge will have to be prolonged.
Business Contingency, Management & Communications
Our Global Crisis Management Team continues to assess and map the risks, develop and implement back-up solutions, decide on priorities, and coordinate communication. Our contingency plan covers each step in the supply chain: raw material and critical supplies, manufacturing, logistics, and customer demand. All our activities are geared toward sustaining
Security of Supply to our Key Customers.
Early on, we ordered all of our office teams to work from home if their work allowed it. We are not traveling any longer and have turned our face-to-face meetings into virtual meetings. Fortunately, technology is supporting us to stay closely connected with each other and with you. I have asked our Sales & Customer Service teams to remain close to you in order to continue offering our support in the best way possible.
“In all countries where we operate, we keep close relationships with the local authorities and communities. This enables us to work closely with them to help contain the spread of the virus and continue our operations in a safe manner.
Overall, we are well-positioned to manage this difficult period. So far, we have limited supply disruptions. Our plants work closely together to back each other up. I am proud of our teams keeping up the work of serving our customers. We have a great team of people and a very robust supply chain. We can do this together!”
Take good care.
Remko Goudappel CEO
Jacobi Carbons AB