Thursday, November 16, 2017

Weekly Round Up Reveals Success Stories in the Freight and Logistics Sector

Record Results from Materials Handling to Air Cargo Groups
Shipping News Feature
UK – Starting this week's look at some of the smaller stories in freight and logistics comes the news that Narrow Aisle Ltd, manufacturer of the Flexi range of articulated forklift trucks and other intralogistics solutions, has announced that it is on target to achieve a year-on-year global sales uplift across its range of over 20% in 2017. The materials handling company attributes the significant increase to growing sales in the Asian and American markets and the success of the Flexi StorMAX AC high density storage system, which Narrow Aisle introduced at the back end of 2015. Narrow Aisle's commercial director, John Maguire, said:

“The StorMAX system is particularly appealing to companies with growing online sales that need to adapt their existing pallet stores in order to create space for activities such as pick and pack, returns management and other fulfilment-based processes. We have a number of fresh and exciting developments in the pipeline that we will unveil in 2018 that will provide impressive user benefits, so, all in all, we are very positive about the future.”

SWEDEN – DENMARK – Stena Bulk is reorganising its business activities into three business areas: Crude & Fuel, Products & Chemicals and LNG and has appointed two new managing directors. At the same time, its business activities previously conducted under the name of Stena Weco are being coordinated and incorporated into Stena Bulk. Additionally, a new office in Copenhagen will be opened in the next few days. As a result, the company will leave its office in Rungsted, which until now has been used by Stena Weco.

“This is a natural transition from the old structure to the new one where we now have total control over our business involving product and chemicals transportation in the MR segment. This and other adjustments will result in a clearer structure as regards our business and organisation,” said Erik Hanell, President and CEO, Stena Bulk.

TURKEY – Following on from our recent story on the development of autonomous technology in world ports, DP World is exploring the possibilities of better productivity through remote container crane operation. The DP World Yarimca container terminal, one of the largest container terminals in Turkey with 1.3 million TEU capacity, will upgrade two of its Konecranes RTGs to test the viability of remote operation. The upgraded RTGs will be remotely operated from two Remote Operating Stations (ROSs). Antoine Bosquet, Sales Director, region EMEA, Port Solutions, Konecranes, said:

“I am pleased to receive this opportunity to field-test remote operation with two of the Konecranes RTGs in the DP World fleet. Together, we will test the remote operation concept, studying the performance of the remotely operated RTGs versus the manned RTGs in the container yard as they carry out work cycles in everyday operating conditions.”

The upgraded RTGs are scheduled to be operational at the beginning of next year.

ARMENIA – Gebrüder Weiss officially opened its new representation in Yerevan, Armenia, on November 3, 2017. During a ceremony at the Grand Hotel Yerevan, Alexander Kharlamov (Managing Director of Gebrüder Weiss Georgia and Armenia) emphasized the significance of the new location for the network of Gebruder Weiss, saying:

“From Yerevan, not only do we serve destinations in Iran and Russia for our customers, but Armenia is also a key stop along the Silk Road – an important hub between Europe and Asia.”

The representation office already began its work at the beginning of April and, since this time, has set up a weekly groupage freight transport from Italy. The company also offers twice-weekly groupage freight transports from Austria (Vienna) and Germany (Hanau) via Georgia (Tbilisi) to Armenia. Thomas Moser, Director and Regional Manager South-East/CIS at Gebruder Weiss, commented:

“By opening up the new location, we are further expanding our local presence in Central Asia and taking another important step when it comes to entering the former Silk Road overland. As a result, our customers also benefit from our high European quality standards in Armenia.”

KENYA – Network Airline Services (NAS) has signed a two-year extension to its contract for Africa Flight Services Kenya (AFS Kenya) to provide cargo handling for its four flights a week into Nairobi.

AFS Kenya will handle some 11,500 tonnes of cargo a year for NAS’ MD-11 and Boeing 747 freighter operations, which arrive in Nairobi from Liege, Belgium, carrying general cargo and then continue onto Doncaster Sheffield Airport in the United Kingdom with shipments of fresh flowers, fruits and vegetables for the UK and European consumer markets. Gonzalo Jacob, CEO of Africa Flight Services Kenya, observed:

“NAS operates a very successful service to and from Kenya and provides an essential link to and from Europe for companies in and around Nairobi. The recent addition of its fourth weekly freighter service ex Nairobi reflects this demand and AFS is proud to be playing an important role in its success. It is thanks to the quality of service and reliability we provide that we have earned this new contract with NAS and we hope to be part of its continued long-term expansion in the region.”

HONG KONG – Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited (Hactl) broke no less than three records in the first week of November. In its SuperTerminal 1 facility, Hactl handled 31,280 tonnes of exports, beating its previous weekly record of 30,593 tonnes in November 2016.

In the same week, its overall total of 42,471 tonnes of cargo handled through the terminal beat its previous weekly best of 41,926 tonnes, also set in November last year. Meanwhile, on the ramp, Hactl handled a staggering 102 freighters in a single day on 5 November – edging past its previous best of 101 freighters handled in a day, recorded on 23 November last year. Hactl Chief Executive Mark Whitehead, said:

“2016 was a year of records for Hactl, largely fuelled by the boom in Q4 resulting from the collapse of Hanjin. We have had no such extraordinary event to boost volumes in 2017, yet our 100 client carriers are all performing strongly and helping us to set new records. Our work on developing e-commerce export traffic via Hong Kong is clearly playing a part in the overall picture, and we are delighted to be able to contribute to our airline customers’ continuing success.”