TURIN, Italy - Fiat Auto S.p.A. is reversing a decade-long strategy of extensive outsourcing in an attempt to gain more control over its manufacturing process.
In the last 14 months, Fiat Auto has retaken control of some customer service, dealer training, die construction and assembly line maintenance operations. It is considering transferring more employees from Fiat group service companies back into Fiat Auto. And it is negotiating with several suppliers about repurchasing parts operations.
A limiting factor will be how much capital financially troubled Fiat Auto can generate.
The only area of operations that won't be brought back in-house is the suspension business it sold to group subsidiary Magneti Marelli in 1999 and 2000.
From 1993 to 2002, Fiat Auto sold many components plants, several stamping activities and its suspension operation. It subsequently contracted to buy parts from the new owners.
Fiat Auto transferred 21,000 employees to 75 other companies, according to the European Industrial Relations Observatory, a network of European research institutes.