Experts help bearing supplier reduce its ecological footprint

Business and computing experts from Leeds Beckett University are joining forces with Leeds-based Quality Bearings Online Ltd (QBOL) to reduce the company’s carbon footprint by creating a new business model.

The project is a 30-month Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP), part-funded by the government through Innovate UK.

The academics and QBOL will create a computer system that will enable the company to move away from a carbon-intensive ‘Just in Time’ approach.

They will build a greener supply chain and explore opportunities for warehousing hubs in key geographic locations around the world.

Dr. Alfred Chinta, course director of supply chain management at Leeds Beckett University and KTP project leader, said: “Greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector are expected to double by 2050 if they continue at current rates – and growing demand for faster shipping is contributing ​​contributes to this scenario, with transport being one of the main contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.

“QBOL is a very successful distributor and exporter of high-quality bearing products. Because 90% of its turnover goes abroad, it is a company with a large ecological footprint.

“As a market disruptor since its inception, and in line with its highly innovative approach, the company recognizes that the company must address this carbon footprint to continue to grow in the net zero era.”

The new expert system – called the Intelligent System for the Net Zero Era – will enable the company to manage its key accounts more strategically, with a more planned approach to order fulfillment, and move away from the Just in Time approach. method.

Denny Maude, CEO of Quality Bearings Online, said: “This exciting project will provide us with a point of market differentiation that addresses a key problem of the current industry model – the high carbon footprint of fast, Just in Time delivery, i.e. often in small packages delivered via air freight.

“Our aim is to provide our customers with greener, more environmentally sustainable services – with supply chain sustainability being a key decision-making factor – and to deliver on our environmental ambitions.”

The work will be managed by a KTP Associate – an experienced graduate who will be recruited as a full-time member of QBOL, with the full support of the Leeds Beckett academic team.

The KTP also offers opportunities for computer and business students at the university to participate in projects including the use of AI for sustainable logistics and green supply chain management.