Integrating Quebec SMEs Into Production Networks: A Spur to Competitiveness

The Conference Board of Canada, 46 pages, March 26, 2012
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By cooperating in production networks to play an important role in the global value chains of multinationals, smaller manufacturing firms in Quebec can successfully confront the challenges posed by globalization.

Document Highlights

The trend toward a world market for labour, capital, goods, and services, coupled with the breakdown of vertical integration among multinational corporations (MNCs), is leading to vast transformations. Firms that were formerly stable and competitive have had to evolve or disappear. Through a literature review and interviews with participants in various industry sectors in Quebec, this report shows how small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can work together to play an important role in the global value chains of MNCs through integrated production networks. The findings point to a number of factors behind successful networks: the presence of world-class MNCs to provide access to large markets and knowledge; close lateral relations between SMEs to share information about markets and technology; forums for communication between MNCs and SMEs; forums for collaboration between industry and academic institutions; SMEs willing to foster innovation by hiring highly trained people; and government cooperation to ensure, for example, appropriate transportation, communications, and financial infrastructure.

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Chapter 1—Introduction

Chapter 2—Literature Review

  • Governance in Value Chain Networks
  • External Connectivities of Production Networks
  • Regional Clusters
  • Benefits and Challenges for SMEs Working With MNCs

Chapter 3—Strategic Choices for SMEs

  • Products Are Easily Specified
  • Moving to a Modular Supply Chain Position
  • Products Are Not Easily Specified
  • Evolution in Supply Chain Structures

Chapter 4—Aerospace Sector

  • Bombardier Aerospace
  • Aéro Montréal
  • DCM Aerospace
  • Elimetal Inc
  • Marquez Transtech Ltd
  • Key Findings From Aerospace Sector Interviews

Chapter 5—Information and Communications Technology Sector

Key Findings From ICT Sector Interviews

Chapter 6—Fashion and Clothing Sector

Key Findings From Fashion and Clothing Sector Interviews

Chapter 7—Consumer Appliance and Industrial Equipment Sectors

  • MABE Canada Inc
  • Velan Inc
  • Key Findings From Sector Interviews

Chapter 8—Conclusions and Recommendations

Recommendations

Appendix A—Bibliography

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