In May 2009, High-Tech Metal Components (HTMC) inaugurated its brand new production plant of forgings and castings for automotive supplies in Suzhou, a city of 13 million inhabitants close to Shanghai, China. After the successful installation of machinery and workers, the company was prepared to begin production. A month later, the general manager for the Chinese division of HTMC received a phone call from the chief operating officer of German headquarters; it was decided that it was necessary to cut costs for 2009 by more than five per cent. How could it be done with the existing supply chain design in China? The cost structure was way too high. What long-term measures could be taken to realize the goal?