We consider a detailed mathematical formulation for the problem of designing supply chain networks comprising multiproduct production facilities with shared production resources, warehouses, distribution centers and customer zones and operating under time varying demand uncertainty. Uncertainty is captured in terms of a number of likely scenarios possible to materialize during the lifetime of the network. The problem is formulated as a mixed-integer linear programming problem and solved to global optimality using standard branch-and-bound techniques. A case study concerned with the establishment of Europe-wide supply chain is used to illustrate the applicability and efficiency of the proposed approach. The results obtained provide a good indication of the value of having a model that takes into account the complex interactions that exist in such networks and the effect of inventory levels to the design and operation. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.