Thursday, July 2, 2015

A Host of Honours for Logistics and Freight Professionals, Supply Chain Groups and Shipping Lines

It's the Time of Year for Awards and Plaudits
Shipping News Feature

WORLDWIDE – The usual slough of awards and commendations this past couple of weeks in the freight and logistics sector starting with supply chain management group Ceva which picked up Best Logistics Provider - Sea Freight award at the recent Asia Freight, Logistics and Supply Chain (AFLAS) Awards held in Hong Kong. The awards, organized by Asia Cargo News, are designed to honor leading organizations in air and shipping lines, air and sea ports, and logistics (including 3PLs) and other associated industry professionals, for demonstrating leadership as well as consistency in service quality, innovation, customer relationship management and reliability.

Winner in the Best Global Shipping Line category was Evergreen Line,and these honours are considered particularly valid by many as over 15,000 readers were asked to vote, as opposed to a decision by a specially appointed panel of judges. Derek Lo, Executive Vice President of Evergreen Marine (Hong Kong) Ltd commented:

"This honour is in recognition of Evergreen Line’s consistent efforts to enhance its services to our customers. Customer demand is the foundation of our strategic planning. We closely monitor the developments of the global economy and demands of our customers, adjusting our service network accordingly. Our byword is customer satisfaction."

Evergreen believes the efforts it maintained during the US West Coast dispute helped lift its share of the vote. An increased demand for Asian imports into East Coast ports saw the Taiwanese carrier make use of its flexible 8,500 TEU ships to launch a new Asia - US East Coast service via the Suez Canal. These L-class vessels are of the maximum size that can pass under the Bayonne Bridge and call at the pivotal East Coast port of New York. Evergreen says the new service provided a perfect alternative to a delayed land-bridge routing via the congested West Coast ports.

The ‘Best Green Shipping Line’ title at the Asian Awards went to Hamburg Süd for the fourth consecutive year. The criteria for the award included compliance with national and global environmental regulations and standards, adequate investment in new environmental technologies, and measures to reduce fuel consumption. It was particularly gratifying given the strenuos efforts made by other carriers to improve their own green credentials. The award was accepted on behalf of the shipping group by Eric Chow, General Manager Area South China, who said:

“The AFLAS award is one of the leading freight and logistics awards in Asia. Thousands of shippers and industry experts have voted, making the results a true reflection of the opinion of the industry”

Continuing at the same event Amsterdam Airport Schiphol has won the award for Best Airport in Europe after following a technical evaluation in which the top eight firms in each category appeared on the final ballot. As with all the winners, the presentation was made at Sky100, the highest indoor viewing deck in Hong Kong and located in its tallest building, the International Commerce Centre. Schiphol Cargo Senior VP Enno Osinga commented:

“Schiphol is known throughout Asia as a major gateway for Europe, and for having the largest share of freighter services from China to Europe. It is gratifying that Asian logistics professionals recognize the considerable work our community has done to streamline processes, and so create a world-class cargo hub.”

In other notable nods to good standards and service DB Schenker Logistics was awarded the customer prize for outstanding environmental engagement on the occasion of the 4th Lufthansa Climate Care Day in Frankfurt/Main. The award was granted especially for the introduction of ‘Carbon Reduction Agreements’ into the business relationship between a logistics service provider and carriers, thereby linking business volume growth to a carbon reduction commitment in a medium-term time frame (2014-2020). Dr. Karl-Friedrich Rausch, Board Member for Transportation and Logistics of the DB Mobility Logistics AG and CEO of Schenker AG observed:

“This award reflects and supports our strategy to become an ‘eco pioneer’ in the transport industry. In addition, it confirms our approach to hereby include our third party service providers as well, thereby contributing mutually to a long-term and carbon neutral business development.”

Finally nothing says ‘Welcome Home’ quite like an icon of the Scottish coastline. At least that certainly seemed to be the case at the Marketing Society Scotland STAR Awards 2015, with Gourock based ferry company Caledonian MacBrayne picking up two awards for its Come Home with CalMac campaign.

Running alongside VisitScotland’s Homecoming 2014, the campaign asked ‘If not now, when?’ and gave travellers, whether in far-flung places or simply on the far-side of Scotland, ideas, hints and tips on how to make their homecoming to the west coast as easy and fun as possible. It was a significant year for Scotland as the eyes of the world turned this way for both the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the Ryder Cup in Gleneagles.

A separate ‘Come Home with CalMac’ website was set up to make it yet easier for the home-comer to really get inspired by the islands and mainland routes, whilst the Travel and Leisure silver accolade is a nod to Lane and the company’s integrated approach across the piece. Working alongside VisitScotland, communities throughout the network, visitor attractions and major festivals, local producers, restaurants and hotels, CalMac was able to produce a co-ordinated approach to highlight and increase passenger footfall to the islands during a year of high interest in travel to Scotland.

And it worked, bringing an extra 69,204 passengers to Hebridean and Clyde shores throughout the network, which was a 1.9% increase on 2013 figures, and a 3.2% increase in cars, up to 25,180. All welcome tourism business for the communities which CalMac works hard to support. Caledonian MacBrayne’s Head of Marketing, Peter Griffiths said:

“We couldn’t be more delighted to have won these awards. My team worked incredibly hard alongside the Lane Agency to put together a relevant and co-ordinated campaign during the year of Homecoming 2014. Bearing in mind the significant and exceptional quality increase in activity across many tourism organisations and companies during the landmark year that was 2014, it is a huge honour to have been recognised and rewarded in this way.”

Photo: The Glenfinnan Viaduct (courtesy of VisitScotland)