Friday, March 19, 2021

From Sport to Apps and Bespoke Containers to Electric Vehicles - Logistics News You May Have Missed

A Look at the Global Supply Chain This Week
Shipping News Feature

UK – SEKO Logistics is gearing up for its biggest-ever sports logistics order fulfilment and global shipping campaign as Official Logistics Partner to new Scottish Premiership champions Rangers Football Club. After claiming the record-breaking 55th league title the triumph is expected to unleash unprecedented demand for Rangers kits and its growing range of retail products.

Having supported Rangers for several years with stadium advertising and corporate hospitality, SEKO became Rangers Official Logistics Partner at the start of the historic 2020/2021 season, which has seen the club take the title nearly two months before the season comes to an end. Working in partnership with Rangers’ Retail and Kit partner Castore, SEKO has already fulfilled hundreds of thousands of orders and completed deliveries to supporters in 89 countries.

UK – Container logistics provider, Pentalver, a subsidiary of Genesee & Wyoming Inc. (G&W), has unveiled a new, innovative website for its container conversions business. The goal was to create a visually striking, user-friendly, modern website that adapts to the growing number of online visitors using mobile devices, while showcasing the extensive range of conversion types available to customers.

The website itemises what is available in three types: Container Conversions - offices, welfare units, workshops, and numerous other bespoke applications; Conversions by Industry Sector - providing information on the wide range of industries benefitting from Pentalver container conversion solutions; Standard Solutions - each solution has its own landing page, with a brief description of the main specifications, CAD plan and photo gallery.

SINGAPORE – Port management information software supplier Innovez One has signed a multi-year contract to digitise the fleet operations of R W Marine Services of Singapore using its maritime sector-specific marineM solution. This will enable R W Marine Services to dispatch jobs wirelessly to mobile devices and monitor its fleet’s movements and the progress of every single job simultaneously using GPS and AIS tracking.

Innovez One will roll out the marineM services in the coming months to R W Marine Services fleet made up of outer port limits (OPL) and in-port supply boats vessels. The vessels are used for sea transportation handling, conveying passengers, tank cleaning, de-slopping and cargo handling to or from ships in the Singapore anchorages, outside port limits, South China Sea and Malacca Straits.

ISRAEL – SWEDEN – Volvo Group Venture Capital AB has invested in Driivz Ltd., an EV charging software company based in Tel Aviv which has developed a platform for managing large charging networks for electric vehicles from end-to-end. The Driivz platform functions as an operating system for electric vehicle (EV) charging networks and is used by the operators of charging points, EV fleets and other key players in the ecosystem. The platform is scalable and modular, which makes it highly flexible and allows it to be customised to meet customers’ needs.

The company has a large and growing number of customers in the utility, oil and gas, and automotive industries and among charging network operators, which are all leading the way in the rapid adoption of electric transport. A joint pilot project between Volvo Trucks, the Volvo Group and Driivz is ongoing with the aim of developing and testing new and innovative charging services to meet the specific needs of electric truck customers and drivers.

SPAIN – Supply chain specialist CHEP has orchestrated a transport collaboration project between chemical and consumer goods company Henkel, and Spanish Dairy outfit CAPSA FOOD. Part of CHEP’s six year-long Collaborative Transport Solution programme, already involving more than 220 of CHEP’s customers in Europe, this will see transport shared via a duo trailer.

The vehicle, combination of a single truck towing two standard trailers, has at 31.75 metres the potential to save 25-30% of CO2 emissions as it shares three roundtrips per week for shipments and deliveries made on the route between Madrid and Catalonia. One participant loading the truck on the outward, the other the return leg. With a capacity for 66 European-sized pallet spaces and 48 tonnes, the duo trailer can cut 250,000 empty kilometres per year, approximately 115 tonnes less CO2 emitted into the atmosphere.

SPAIN – Hutchison Ports Barcelona box terminal BEST has launched a mobile app, Hutchison Ports ubi, taking a step further towards digitisation of the logistics chain. The app has several functions, such as tracking (arrival and departure schedules) of ships, trains, containers and trucks operating at BEST. The app is called ubi, referring to the Latin term ‘ubique, which means ubiquitous, i.e. everywhere at all times.

With this app the truck door process is digitised, allowing paperless tracking of operations, avoiding physical contact in times of pandemic. More specifically, the driver can view the PINCODE, before entering the terminal, to know when he can pick up or deliver his container and receive the gate tickets on his mobile phone.

Additionally, Hutchison Ports ubi alerts users any changes in the status of ships, trains and containers that have been selected to follow. This application is aimed at all terminal users, including shipping lines, rail operators, freight forwarders, transport companies, importers/exporters and even the truck driver himself. The Hutchison Ports ubi app is free and available now on the App Store and Google Play.

SWITZERLAND – US – The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced the postponement of the 77th IATA Annual General Meeting and World Air Transport Summit. The event will be hosted by JetBlue Airways in Boston, USA on 3-5 October 2021. The event was originally scheduled for 27-29 June 2021, also in Boston.

MIDDLE EAST – Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the UAE’s national railway network, has announced its partnership with the Saudi Railway Company (SAR), by signing a strategic agreement establishing a framework for the exchange of services, training, and knowledge transfer. The agreement will also support identifying future initiatives, such as those in the field of technology and procurement, ensuring training curricula are up-to-date, optimal maintenance times, and other programs that enhance information exchange within the logistics and mobility sector.

In addition, the agreement facilitates the leasing of locomotives, the exchange of spare parts, as well as the training of engineers and students in operational processes and the further development of competencies in various technical fields. Etihad Rail started construction of Stage Two of the UAE’s national railway network in early 2020. The historic project extends from Al Ghuwaifat on the borders of Saudi Arabia to the emirate of Fujairah, on the eastern coast. Upon completion, Stage Two will link the nation’s ports, manufacturing hubs, and urban centres and integrate with the GCC’s railway network.

GERMANY – NETHERLANDS – WEST AFRICA – German box line Hapag-Lloyd has agreed to purchase Rotterdam based NileDutch, which has four decades of experience trading with West Africa. The container shipping company is present in 85 locations across the world and has 16 own offices in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Singapore, China, Angola, Congo and Cameroon. With 10 liner services, around 35,000 TEU of transport capacity and a container fleet of around 80,000 TEU, the 350 strong staff connect Europe, Asia and Latin America with West and South Africa.

ITALY – Ukraine International Airlines has awarded Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) an 18-month cargo handling contract in Milan. Starting on 1 April 2021, WFS will handle cargo for the airline’s three Boeing 737 flights per week, with further increase in volume to daily in June 2021, connecting Milan’s Malpensa Airport with Kiev.

WFS says it operates the most modern cargo terminal at Milan-Malpensa, having invested in a new 8,800 m2 facility, which opened in late 2018. The building has the capacity to handle 47,000 tonnes annually and is fully equipped with the latest cargo handling systems as well as a cool zone for temperature-controlled shipments such as pharmaceuticals which can now accept ULDs.

GREECE – MONACO – US – UK – Scorpio Bulkers Inc., renamed Eneti last month after quitting the dry bulk sector, has sold seven vessels in a ‘ships for shares’ deal to Greek outfit Star Bulk Carriers which has assumed the outstanding lease obligations of the ships, currently at valued at $102.3million.

The deal saw NASDAQ listed Star Bulk advised once again by London law firm Watson Farley & Williams and resulted in Star Bulk issuing the vendors three million new shares in the second such deal the two have arranged.

Photo: All hands to the pumps as Rangers celebrate their first league title for nine years.