Master Thesis at Volvo Group Purchasing

Master Thesis at Volvo Group Purchasing (Sustainability/New Business Models) –
“Circular economy business model(s) applied to Lithium-ion batteries”

Please note
  • This assignment is a student thesis. In order for your application to be considered you should currently be a university student eligible to complete a Master thesis as part of your university program
  • Students can apply by themselves or in an already formed group
  • Below presented topics are to be defined based on existing information and suggestions by all involved parties
About us
Innovative Purchasing is a function within Group Trucks Purchasing (GTP) always on the forefront by embracing change and breaking new grounds capturing the latest innovation. The four focus areas of Innovative Purchasing are:
  • Innovation Development
  • Early Phase Project Office
  • Business Intelligence
  • Sustainability
Description of thesis work
In 2009, the Volvo Group started to produce and offer more environmentally friendly vehicles by launching its first range of hybrid vehicles. Since then, the Volvo Group has continuously improved its offer towards a greener future and has strengthened its current sustainable transport solution portfolio by also launching its first Fully Electric Vehicle range in 2018.
In Europe, the 2006/66/EC Directive regulates the batteries end-of-life market. This directive specify the obligation of the treatment, collection and recycling of end-of-life batteries but remain vague regarding the responsibility split between the battery producers, distributors and end-users.
Hence, the Volvo Group has taken the decision to offer a complete battery end-of-life service to its customers by also taking responsibility for the battery recycling. However, the Volvo Group ambitions goes beyond the recycling. Therefore, the Volvo Group would like to investigate a circular economy business model worldwide where the scarce materials could be re-used in our future products!
Based on this background, the thesis should provide a first recommendation for a sustainable circular business model(s) for our batteries on the European market. To provide such first recommendation, the thesis shall in particular clarify the following aspects:
  • Understand the current lithium-ion reverse logistic flow and agreements from the customers to the dealers
  • Investigate the existing and future market regulations toward the batteries end-of-life and identify the constraints and opportunities toward a circular economy approach
  • Benchmark other OEM’s in the passenger car and truck industry having implemented a circular business model and impacts on their performance and development. Clarify the best practices
  • Benchmark other manufacturing industries using scarce materials in their products
  • Define the key parameters to have a successful business case for introducing a circular business model from the design of our batteries to the recycling
  • Investigate existing tools/processes/ways of working/trainings that could support introducing a circular economy mind set for the development of our future products
  • Propose/recommend some performance indicators to assess the sustainable performance of our battery and recycling suppliers
  • Provide a first recommendation for a sustainable circular business model for our end-of-life batteries for the European market
Suitable background
The ideal student(s) will possess good communications skills in English (written and verbal), show a high level of initiative, be self-driven, have good analytical capabilities and have a high interest in sustainability and circular economy approach.
The successful candidate should have strong interpersonal and social skills and should be willing to travel if necessary in order to meet internal stakeholders and external companies for benchmark.
The candidate should have a bachelor degree in Economics or Industrial Engineering and Management and is now completing his/her Masters.
Any experience within the field of eco conception is an advantage and relevant courses within the subject of circular economy business models is a merit.
Thesis Level
Master thesis
Number of student
1 or 2 students.
Language
English
Tutor
Mélanie Girardot, Project Manager Purchasing, Early Phase Project Office
Volvo Group Purchasing
Phone number: +46 31 3237483

About Us

The Volvo Group is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of trucks, buses, construction equipment and marine and industrial engines under the leading brands Volvo, Renault Trucks, Mack, UD Trucks, Eicher, SDLG, Terex Trucks, Prevost, Nova Bus, UD Bus and Volvo Penta. We aim at being the most admired employer in the industry by attracting and engaging the best people.

Volvo Group Purchasing has 125 BSEK in Purchasing annual spend and 2,550 suppliers in serial production. Only for the truck business, 2 billion truck parts were delivered to 40 plants around the world. By scouting and working with high performing suppliers, we deliver the best possible products and service that bring value to our customers. We support the Volvo Group’s mission ‘Driving prosperity through transport solutions’ by applying the principles of Code of Conduct and sustainable sourcing to the purchasing processes.

When you join Volvo Group Purchasing, you will become part of a global network with more than 1,300 professionals in 50 different sites across 25 countries. We offer unique opportunities for you to connect with people across functions, and we are passionate to accelerate your career through competence development.

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