2017 PepsiCo Team Project


The Challenge:
PepsiCo’s flagship bottled water brand, Aquafina, constitutes nearly 10% of total PepsiCo demand and drives a large portion of the company’s supply chain complexity and cost. The Tauber team was tasked with analyzing Aquafina's complex network modeling tool to identify and prioritize areas of opportunity along with formulating recommendations to capitalize on these opportunities.

The Solution:
The team recommended revised costing inputs, alternate safety stock policies, and changes to PepsiCo’s Aquafina warehousing strategy. These changes would not only unlock a savings potential of up to $600k for 2018, but also significantly improve PepsiCo’s future decision-making ability.

Read the 2017 PepsiCo Team Project Executive Summary in the 2017 SPOTLIGHT! book.

"My Tauber experience was a great insight into the entire planning and delivery components of Aquafina, which is the flagship Pepsi bottled water that we all know. I had the opportunity to visit a several plants during my internship, and it was crazy to see the high volume, almost continuous flow process that was the Aquafina manufacturing process. I really enjoyed my time there, and was able to save the company a lot in annual costs, which can be multiplied if applied to the dozens of other beverages that Pepsi carries." - Joshua Thariath

Student Team:
Maaz Khalid–MBA & MSE Industrial and Operations Engineering
Joshua Thariath–EGL (BSE & MSE Industrial and Operations Engineering)

Project Sponsors:
Erika Lewis–Senior Director NAB Supply Chain Strategy
Michael Reynolds–Senior Manager NAB Supply Chain Network Strategy
Jeffrey Sanko–Senior Director PBC Supply Chain Strategy

Faculty Advisors:
Xiuli Chao–College of Engineering
Sanjeev Kumar–Ross School of Business

About Tauber Team Projects:

The 2017 Tauber Team Projects resulted in $575 million in savings according to sponsoring company calculations, an average of $18.5 million per project over 3 years.

Each two to three person Tauber Team consists of graduate engineering, MBA, and/or MSCM students. Along with receiving high-level corporate support from the sponsoring company, each team is advised by a College of Engineering and a Ross School of Business faculty member and overseen by a Tauber Institute Co-Director. The projects begin on-site in May and continue for 14 weeks.  Students present the results of their projects and compete for over $40,000 in scholarships at the U-M Tauber Institute's annual Spotlight! event, held each September in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  Spotlight! provides outstanding opportunities for students and corporate partners to establish relationships while exploring innovations in operations and manufacturing.
Access Spotlight! book for project details.
2017 PepsiCo Team
2017 PepsiCo Team