The intranet has been transformed into a more user-friendly space- a renovated area which will be presented to the upcoming members through a personalized welcome tour
With the aim of converting the members area in a more useful space for agents, The Coop team has redesigned its format. All changes have been included under the premise of improving the traceability and the use of the intranet. This renovation comes along with the digital strategy that has been developed by The Coop for the past two years.
The new design enables members to easily access the essential tools such as the Network Directory or FreightViewer. Moreover, there are two additions to this space. Firstly, a section dedicated to the newest Coop members, which will inform about their incorporation to the Network and will introduce new agents to the group. Secondly, we have created a section for The Coop member news. In this section the agents will find interviews with partners and interesting information related to the sector.
Along with these changes, the team will greet new members with an online welcome tour. This update is a significant change since it will enable the latest members to know all features and procedures within the Network. The Coop considers it essential to introduce new members into the group through a warm and personalized welcome.
This facilitates the interaction with all members and with the Head Office. Both these changes were included in the digital strategy adapted by The Coop for the last two years. This is because, reshaping the intranet enhances the traceability and the use of the members area. On the other hand, the welcome tour ensures that new members are integrated in the network from the beginning.
The welcome tour is for those agents who have recently joined the Network. Besides, it is also for those who wants to know more about the features offered inside the members area.
“We are local and home grown but our focus has been national and global. We’ve pursued the more esoteric, challenging and highly regulated commodities: We’ve moved satellites to their launch sites, high-explosive charges to mining/drilling sites, prototype automobiles to secret sites for photo-shoots, among others.”
Today we had a long conversation with Robert Schott, the President of Airschott INC, a Coop member in Washington DC, USA. In this two-part interview Mr. Robert Schott, the President of Airschott INC, not only introduces his company, its strong points, its achievements but also narrates a very interesting story about an extremely challenging and complicated DG shipment they handled.
Q. Can you tell us a little about the history of AIRSCHOTT? A. I founded the company in 1977 as a sole proprietorship, customs brokerage firm. In 1982, AIRSCHOTT, INC. and SEASCHOTT, INC. were incorporated, the former based in the Commonwealth of Virginia with offices and warehouse on Washington Dulles Int’l Airport (IAD) and the latter based in the State of Maryland, near Baltimore. The names identified the modal markets we served as both Customs Brokers and Air/Ocean Freight Forwarders.
Q. What distinguishes AIRSCHOTT from other freight forwarders in your city?
A. We are local and “home grown” but our focus has been national (and global) for many years. We’ve been forward thinking and innovative in all respects and we’ve pursued the more esoteric, challenging and highly regulated commodities where others shy away from difficult transactions. We set up two Foreign Trade Zones, ab initio, both on airports, one in Maryland the other in Virginia. We also developed and patented a mobile, temperature controlled fumigation chamber to process inbound air freighted fruits and vegetables. At IAD, we remain “on-airport”, adjacent to the flight line, in order to be able to efficiently handle airside transactions.
We set up two Foreign Trade Zones, ab initio, both on airports, one in Maryland the other in Virginia and we also developed and patented a mobile, temperature-controlled fumigation chamber to process inbound air freighted fruits and vegetables.
Q. What would be the most significant shipment your team has handled?
A. After 43 years, it’s difficult to identify a single shipment – there have been so many. We’ve moved satellites to their launch sites, high-explosive charges to mining/drilling sites, university laboratory samples for research, aircraft by ocean and air to/from testing sites, prototype automobiles to secret sites for photo-shoots, live animals, ship spares, AOG parts, frozen foods; disaster relief material…too many to list.
Q. Wow, that is very interesting, could you please let us know more about these memorable shipments?
A.The following derives solely from my memory as the paper and electronic records have long ago been shredded. As time passes, my memory sometimes seems shredded, as well, but this was a pretty memorable shipment.
The year was around 2008. The shipment of hundreds of shaped explosive charges originated in Australia and consisted of Class 1.1 products used in the mining industry to generate controlled underground blasts that provide a seismic profile of the earth below. It was headed to the mountains of Azerbaijan. It was a 20’ container that was, of course, being watched very carefully.
The task was to move the container to the US West Coast, then across the country by truck, park it in a safe harbour before lading aboard an ACL vessel in Halifax for transport to Liverpool where the container would be stripped and a charter aircraft would carry the contents to Baku. At GYD, the consignee would collect their cargo and move it to the mining region in the mountains.
MAERSK brought the box to Oakland. In preparation, well in advance, we contacted the U.S. Customs supervisory officer in charge and provided all appropriate information for collection by a qualified trucker and movement “in bond” across the USA into Canada.
On the day of the vessel’s arrival in port, our driver was waiting at the quay to collect the container. Of course, the U.S. Customs Supervisor with whom we had prepared all in advance was not on duty that day. The replacement officer had no advance information and questioned the adequacy of the trucker’s bond – which we had previously cleared as adequate. While in the process of trying to educate the substitute Customs officer, I received a phone call from the Captain of the Port of Oakland, saying that if I didn’t remove that container from the quay within 1 hour he was going to shut down the Port and my company would pay for all the expenses that would entail. I immediately called the Customs Port Director and explained all to him. Within about 15 minutes, the container was released to the bonded trucker and the driver left the port with the container.
Liverpool required a $20million bond in order to discharge the container there, which was arranged with our colleagues/agents in England. Over-flight permits across all the nations between England and Azerbaijan were challenging but the air charter operator managed that in due time. The cargo was delivered, we were paid. All good.
Keep an eye on our News section next Friday to read the second part of this very interesting interview!
They were in charge of several aspects of the cargo including port formalities, reloading and delivery to the consignee’s warehouse by truck
Alphatrans Ltd, a Coop member in Odessa, Ukraine, has recently carried out the movement of a spray dryer. The shipment which came from China was moved from the port in 1×40′ Open Top + 1×40′ Flat Rack and delivered to the warehouse in Ukraine by truck.
The cargo in FR weighed around 12 MT but moving it was challenging because of the odd shape of the shipment. In the words of Dmitriy Balaban, the Managing Director of Alphatrans, “Although the weight of the shipment was not too much, moving it posed a bit of challenge since we had no information about COG. After discussing with the shipper and the consignee, we arranged for the reloading from FR into low bed trailer and safely delivered the cargo to the final destination.”
Congratulations to Alphatrans Ltd for pulling off this project successfully and all the best for their future projects!
The logistics service provider supports the health system in Africa by transporting test kits for the public health departments in several cities across the continent
Imperial – a Cooperative member in Malmo, Shanghai and Zurich – has beaten the airfreight capacity crunch with 10 charters of COVID-19 test kits and PPE destined for South Africa.
The project totalling 2,868.19 cbm, and comprising protective gowns, goggles, masks and testing kits – was flown to Johannesburg on one flight from Beijing, one from Guangzhou and eight from Shanghai. Imperial used freighter aircraft of Etihad Cargo, Ethiopian Airlines Cargo and South African Airways Cargo.
The Imperial team sending out time critical, cold chain shipments from China to several countries
Joshua McLarin, Managing Director of Imperial in China, says: “Since the pandemic started, our team has successfully executed many projects involving the shipment of PPE and testing kits.”
“We have faced many challenges along the way including extreme urgency, frequent lead time deviations, delays due to physical inspections by customs authorities, constantly changing export regulations, severe shortages of airfreight capacity and containers, and flight delays. Warehouses and airport terminals have also been extremely congested, complicating urgent deliveries to handlers.”
“In spite of all this, by working around the clock and leveraging all our experience and contacts, we have ensured that the shipments reached their destinations – typically local hospitals and government departments – within the required deadlines”.
Congratulations to Imperial and all the best for their upcoming projects!
They have been offering a vast array of highly personalized services for their clients since the last 15 years
Stella Shipping, a Coop member in Durban, South Africa, makes the grade and ranks as one of the top shipping agents in their country by Africa Logistics, a news portal dedicated to the supply chain sector in Africa. This ranking indicates their excellent performance for a decade and a half and their ability to deliver their customers and partners with quality services in their areas of operation.
“We are absolutely delighted with this recognition as this is something we have been constantly working towards since day one, that is providing world-class services from Durban to the rest of the world.” says Byron Vather, the Sales Director of Stella Shipping.
They are widely recognized for their high ethical standards and their value-added logistical services in the field of breakbulk cargo, air freight, IMO class 1 cargoes, intermodal transport, customs clearance, cargo insurance etc. “Keeping in mind the stiff competition and the pandemic- induced economic crisis, this has indeed been a remarkable achievement on the part of our team. We are lucky to count on a highly professional and dedicated team of workers who work relentlessly to make a success of each and every project and for belonging to a professional network like the Coop where you can find the most competent partners,” adds Mr. Vather.
Congratulations to Stella Shipping and wishing them the very best for their future endeavours!
Added to this, they are also transporting testing kits for the public health departments in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia on a weekly basis
Imperial, a Cooperative member in Zurich, Malmo and Shanghai since 2019, has played yet another key role in the global fight against COVID-19 with the movement of more than 2,000,000 COVID-19 testing kits from Xi’an and Shanghai, China, to Italy in conjunction with its network partner in Milan.
The Imperial team sending out time critical, cold chain shipments from China to several countries
The urgent testing kits – with a total volume of 48 cbm – were transported by airfreight in blue ice boxes, to conserve temperature within the critical range of -15 degrees to -25 degrees. Imperial was also responsible for arranging temperature-controlled pre-flight storage and ground handling of the cargo, as well as chilled road transportation from the factory to the airport.
The routing of the shipment was also critically important, both to eradicate any risk of temperature excursions en route, and to ensure delivery within the strict limit of 144 hours from origin to destination.
As said by Joshua McLarin, Managing Director of Imperial China: “We are really proud of this successful project, which was challenging due to the time constraints and the need to obtain capacity at short notice. End-to-end supervision and scrutiny of all supply chain elements was also vital to eliminate any risk of damage to the shipment contents.”
“We are pleased to have played a part once again in the war against the pandemic, and we thank our partners in Milan for their professionalism and team spirit”.
Imperial is also now handing the weekly shipment of testing kits for the public health departments in Botswana, South Africa and Namibia.
Congratulations to Imperial and all the best for their upcoming projects!
They move a shipment of 2,100,000 protective gowns by rail from Zhengzhou to Helsinki
Imperial – a member of the Cooperative Logistics Network in Malmo, Zurich and Shanghai – has taken one third of the entire capacity of the inaugural freight train from Zhengzhou to Helsinki, with a mass consignment of 2,100,000 PPE protective gowns for health workers.
Imperial moves 1/3 of total freight for the first China-Europe freight train
The cargo – destined for Helsinki General Hospital – occupied 13 40’ dry containers, weighed 156,000 kg and was packed in 15,110 cartons. Imperial managed every aspect of the shipment, overcoming problems of space availability, loading at origin and customs complications.
A further 10x 40’ containers are following in a second major shipment.
According to Joshua McLarin, the Managing Director of Imperial in China, ”We are excited to be one of the first forwarders to utilize the newest China-Europe rail freight service, and to have been able to support it in such a major way. The service is a key element in the growing Belt and Road Initiative, boosting business between China and Europe”.
Congratulations to Imperial for this commendable endeavour!
Throughout the lockdown they retained all their staff and were able to maintain a high level of customer satisfaction
Greenvine Company Limited, a Coop member in Tema, Ghana, has recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. Their company started its journey back in 2011 when Mr. Joe DeGraft Yeboah got into this business after gaining considerable experience by working with DHL, FedEx, and Aramex. Since then, they never looked back and presently they count on three offices with a total employee strength of 16.
Greenvine managed to retain their entire workforce who received full remuneration as they were working from home throughout the lockdown period, and they even managed to maintain a high degree of client satisfaction.
In the words of Joe DeGraft Yeboah, “We couldn’t have an in-person celebration because of the present circumstances but our entire team met online. In the last 10 years, we have achieved a great many things including enhancements of various aspects of our services and improvement of our online services. It feels amazing to be part of the Coop family and we are very excited about our future plans and at the possibility of generating a global buzz!”
Congratulations to Greenvine and wishing them all the best for their future projects!
The ACI system which will allow the authorities to identify the high-risk shipment, will be launched in April and will be mandatory from July 2021
Egypt’s Ministry of finance will obligate the importers to apply the Advance Cargo Information Declaration (ACID) as a test on 1/04/2021 and will officially make it compulsory from 30/06/2021. This move is a part of the authority’s effort to improve the customs system so as to simplify the processes, reduce the prices of commodities, and lower the clearance time.
As explained by Mahmoud Alam El Deen, the Business Development Manager of Beluga Freight, a Coop member in Cairo, Egypt, “The Ministry of Finance will obligate the importers to apply Advance Cargo information Declaration (ACID) as a test on 1/04/2021 and this will be made compulsory from 30/06/2021. Therefore to apply article No.39 of Custom’s Law 207/2020, the Maritime Transport Sector must notify the carriers, vessel’s masters, agents and their representatives to insert the Advance Cargo information Declaration (ACID ) into the load documents of the import cargo of the country. In case this information is not present with the load documents then, these shipments will be re-loaded outside the country directly under the account of the carrier or its local shipping agencies.”
The ACI system is being adopted for easy identification of high-risk cargo before they reach the ports and it would also ensure that the cargo sits in the customs warehouse for only a short period of time.
We thank Beluga Freight our member in Cairo, Egypt for providing the members with this information!
These out of gauge shipments were moved by 40 ft flatrack containers and occasionally necessitated police escort
E2E Supply Chain Management, a Coop member in Singapore with 15 years of experience in the industry, is presently handling three important projects involving the shipment of tower cranes. The first shipment which was moved from Bangkok to Singapore consisted of 450 m3 of tower cranes by 6 x 40ft HQ Ex-work mode. The second cargo of 1,500 m3 of tower cranes is being transported from Hong Kong to Ashdod, Israel by 28 x 40ft HQ & 2 x 40ft FR. The 3rd shipment of 700 m3 of tower cranes from Busan, Korea to Brisbane, Australia, by 14 x 40ft HQ is still ongoing.
Standard lashing and choking services were employed for the safe delivery of the cargoes. They had to use several special equipment including 40ft flat racks due to the dimension of the cargo and a police escort was required for trucking PSA Port to the consignee’s premise during the night.
“We are very contented to start the new year with a batch of important shipments. We are already one of the major import and export handlers for different sizes of tower cranes in Singapore and this new year we aim to consolidate our position. Our clients purchase from Europe but mainly from the Chinese local market. After this project, we will also move the tower cranes to Asia pacific, regions in the middle east and Australia and Israel,” states Alan Lim, Chief Executive Officer of E2E Supply Chain Management.
Currently, E2E Supply Chain Management is moving one set (after dismantling) from Taiwan door to Melaka door by 40ft FR of 38 tons and 40ft HQ. “We are also one of the regular import and export handlers for different sizes of press machines. These press machines are regularly bought from China, Thailand, Philippines and Taiwan for Indonesia and Malaysia markets”.
Congratulations to E2E Supply Chain Management and wishing them the very best for their next project!