This will now allow over 350 network members to directly check the availability of containers on the leading online marketplace for shipping containers
In a move to enhance the container management capabilities of its members, The Cooperative Logistics Network has incorporated Container xChange, an online marketplace, into its Members Area. Container xChange, a top-tier platform for container logistics, acts as a comprehensive hub that brings together crucial industry stakeholders to streamline container management processes, simplify booking procedures, and optimize invoicing and payments. The latest API implementation, will allow more than 350 freight forwarders to check availability of containers on this platform directly from the Members’ Area of the The Coop website.
Container xChange aims to cope with the challenges faced by industry professionals by streamlining container operations and decision-making through real-time data access and process automation. Moreover, this platform empowers forwarders to navigate global markets efficiently, offering a selection of over 100,000 offers across 1,500+ locations, enabling them to secure the best prices and rates. With a few clicks, freight forwarders can seamlessly engage in selling and leasing containers. Additionally, it allow them to gain insights into accurate container prices, one-way leasing rates, and forecasts spanning up to 2 years.
“By integrating this cutting-edge platform for container logistics into The Coop’s intranet, members can expect a streamlined experience in managing and booking shipping containers, executing related processes. The integration of their API in our Member Area will enable our members to access directly through a browser to search for container availability,” says Antonio Torres, the President and Founder of The Cooperative Logistics Network.
Dr. Johannes Schlingmeier, the co-founder and CEO of Container xChange, has highlighted a notable challenge in the container logistics sector—the slow adoption of technology impeding real-time analysis of price and leasing rates. This is why, he underscores the importance of leveraging big data to facilitate more informed decision-making. According to Dr. Schlingmeier, “Container xChange simplifies the access to data so industry participants can complement the experience and offline knowledge with the latest facts when making decisions.”
The collaboration is a noteworthy advancement that will help to elevate the overall efficiency of the The Coop members. Most importantly, this recent integration aligns with The Coop’s digital strategy, which is dedicated to providing its members with cutting-edge technological tools within the logistics market. Complemented by features such as FreightViewer, The Coop’s exclusive quoting platform for members, this initiative equips members to efficiently navigate the evolving demands of the current industry.
The Cooperative Logistics Network’s 6th Annual Meeting that was held in Phuket in March 2023 witnessed a record attendance of over 225 freight forwarders
The Cooperative Logistics Network’s 6th Annual Meeting that took place at Le Meridien Phuket Beach Resort, Thailand, has broken all previous attendance records. Over 225 freight forwarders from more than 80 countries traveled to Phuket to participate in three days of back-to-back business networking for increased collaboration with their network partners and for increasing the scope and horizons of their businesses. Seven websites dedicated to the freight forwarding sector have covered the news about the record turnout and successful conclusion of The Coop’s Annual Conference at Phuket.
The news published in these websites mainly talk about the record attendance, the success of the in-person meetings, how it fostered networking and helped to further the interests of the members companies.
Listed below are the websites where are news of The Coop’s 6th Annual Meeting have been published.
Ecargolog is a company that is currently doing programs exclusively on logistics related subjects to facilitate the management of the logistics companies and help them to make use of their personnel to an optimum level. Their website presents cutting-edge information relating to this sector by way of personal interviews and live programs on the latest happenings, topical subject matters and current issues confronted by the industry.
Forwarder Magazine is an all-inclusive resource for logistics, shipping and forwarding news, information and insight. Additionally, from expert opinions to trade-specific knowledge in the air/sea/road freight sector, this website covers everything of relevance in the transportation and logistics market.
Veintepies is a Spanish language logistics news portal. It publishes relevant news and articles for people working in the logistics industry. Furthermore, with a large audience in Spain and Latin America, it covers news, articles, and opinions from the freight and logistics sector.
Grupo Todologisticas is a company that has been helping entrepreneurs in the logistics industry in Latin America to generate new business opportunities by helping them to enhance their marketing and promotion strategies.
Globenewswire is one of the world’s largest news distribution networks publishing real-time news releases from international brands. Additionally, they drive brand awareness and generate media coverage with targeted news distribution to media and consumers worldwide.
Actualidad Marítima y Portuaria is an initiative of the students and professors of the International Master in Maritime and Port Administration (MIAMP) at International Maritime Business School. Moreover, their online magazine has been publishing news and resources from the logistics industry since 2009.
Yahoo Finance is a media property and a part of the Yahoo network. It features financial news, commentaries, stock market updates, press releases etc. Moreover, with its headquarters in New York City, it is one of the largest news and media websites.
The event which will take place from 11th – 13th March 2023 will include 6,000 one-to-one meetings among network members and also a corporate group tour with the attending delegates
The Cooperative Logistics Network’s 6th Annual Meeting is all set to happen from 11th to 13th March 2023. Following a long wait of more than two years due to the pandemic, The Coop members will finally attend the in-person Annual Meeting at Le Meridien Beach Resort on the beautiful island of Phuket from 11th-13th March 2023. The upcoming Annual Meeting will help to reinforce the partnerships among network members and drive a substantial amount of business for the participating agents.
Some of the highlights of the meeting will include the Welcome Cocktail Reception, a Gala Dinner, Party, and 32 one-to-one meetings among the participating delegates. The one-to-one meetings would come with a personal touch which is extremely crucial for increasing the project volume of the member companies. They will allow members to sit face-to-face with their existing and would-be partners, showcase their company and hash out the details of their upcoming projects.
Additionally, this year The Coop has arranged for an optional sightseeing tour with the members to some of the most breathtaking locations at Phi Phi Island. The corporate day trip will help to break the ice among network members on the first day of the conference. Additionally, this relaxing trip will promote networking and help to build trust and friendship among the agents.
Registration for the Annual Meeting is now open. Visit our Annual Meeting page for further details about the conference.
Members will be able to download the document by accessing their Members Area
In a bid to digitize their services, improve the network and offer the best and most innovative advantages to its members, The Cooperative Logistics Network is now offering an Online Certification. In order to do so, the IT Department has put together a new section in the intranet. This will enable The Coop members to download their network certificate with the date on which the network accepted them.
This document accrediting membership will be available for download and print from the Members Area. Moreover, freight forwarders who belong to the network will only need to access its intranet and click on the “Certificate” tab to find it in the Dashboard.
In the words of Antonio Torres, President and Founder of The Cooperative Logistics Network “We are working hard to digitize all our services to make our members work easier. With just a click, they will be able to download the Online Membership Certificate. This will be an official Certificate of Membership that proves that the company is a member of The Cooperative Logistics Network and has passed through a rigorous selection process”.
A competitive market, increased client expectation, and the need for seamless, visible, and more efficient work processes are some of the factors prompting traditional freight forwarders to take the digital stride. New technologies like blockchain, IoT, TMS, Digital Twins, and Big Data are reshaping the future of the freight forwarding industry. The digital transformation is happening at this very moment in the transportation and logistics industry. Independent freight forwarders are racing to adapt to the big changes and come up as digital freight forwarders. In this background, the companies that don’t adapt to the changes necessitated by Logistics 4.0 are running the risk of losing out their businesses to their competition.
Our topic for this week is a special report on the beginnings of the Coop’s member-exclusive TMS FreightViewer where Mr. Manual Cardona, the IT Manager of The Cooperative Logistics Network and the Developer of FreightViewer has provided us with valuable insights.
The factors that motivated The Coop to create a Transport Management System
The need for a digital transformation
Back in 2018, The Coop’s President and Founder, Antonio Torres, understood the importance of the digital transformation for small and independent freight forwarders. After exhaustive research on the up-and-coming technologies setting new standards in the freight forwarding industry, he concluded that investing in a digital tool would allow hundreds of Coop members to increase operational efficiency, cut down costs and explore new avenues of business.
In that very moment, Manuel Cardona, the IT Manager of The Cooperative Logistics Network, starts developing a software that applies the more than 20 years of Antonio’s experience as a freight forwarder. “The freight forwarding industry introduced technological innovation at a much slower pace than the other industries. It has been stuck for decades in outmoded customer interfaces, and age-old manual processes. Nevertheless, the situation was rapidly transforming. We understood that forwarders were risking getting weighed down with ineffectual resource utilization, and slow response time. These are two crucial factors that can erode the customer base of freight forwarders. This encouraged Antonio Torres to figure out a way to allow The Coop members to initiate the digital change. This was when he got in touch with me”, explains Manuel Cardona.
The digital strategy
However, digitization is not just about investing in expensive software and creating an IT team for automated workflow. It is more about creating a foolproof digital strategy that is sustainable over the long term. The process requires exhaustive research, preparation and continuous customer engagement to invest in the right tools and obtain the desired outcome.
After years of diligent effort and considerable private investment, The Cooperative Logistic Network came up with FreightViewer in 2018. “It was a very exciting moment for me! We knew that we were taking a very important step that would transform the mode of operation of independent freight forwarders. Above all, we were allowing more than 320 members to create an online showcase of their door-to-door freight rates, instantly send a quotation and share shipping documents effortlessly in real-time… and all on one professional platform!”, continues Mr. Cardona.
FreightViewer: from an idea to a ground-breaking TMS
The Coop’s 5th Annual Meeting was the first time where FreightViewer was first presented to members. It was held in Abu Dhabi in March 2019 and it broke an attendance record. “In the first few months since the launch, we had to put in a lot of effort. FreightViewer was going to be presented in the Annual Meeting to more than 180 members and everything had to be ready. I remembered the nervousness I felt in the months leading to the Event. Andrea Martin, The Cooperative’s FreightViewer Coordinator, was the person responsible for the FreightViewer demonstrations and for instructing members about the utilities and features of this platform. However, everything went well. She came back with some positive feedback from members which encouraged us to keep improving”.
After the Meeting was over, FreightViewer was already a reality and more and more members started doing tests in the platform to see how it could create quotations instantly. “We devoted considerable time explaining to members how to use it, its advantages and features. They began realizing how it could improve their day-to-day tasks. However, there was still some reluctance. It was then that we started to realize that there was a lot of space to improve the tool. I must say that Andrea was the key in the development and update of the software. She was -and still is- in constant touch with members who helped us to make FreightViewer more convenient and practical, and easily adaptable to the work reality of forwarders.”
The next step for the Cooperative’s team was to look for industry-leading companies to partner with. The first one happened in 2019 when FreightViewer established an agreement with SHIPCO, one of the world’s leading neutral NVOCC’s. “This was a huge move since it enabled the agents to access the LCL rates in over thirty countries right from FreightViewer. Thus, this meant that they could automate a considerable chunk of their day-to-day paperwork”.
After this, the Coop’s team decided it was time to expand FreightViewer’s accessibility and offer as many opportunities as possible to all users. That was when in January 2019, the Coop’s IT department added a new feature to FreightViewer that enabled members to send and receive quote requests to any of their partners both within as well as outside the Network. This update allowed them to store all quotes provided by any freight forwarder on a unique platform. Afterward, came other partnerships in project, such as the one with Onus Cargo Services, an insurance broker or BlueX an API developer.
A TMS can be defined as a tool that manages and optimizes the daily operations of logistics companies. That is exactly what FreightViewer does. Its primary aim is to process all the freight forwarding operations within a unique channel. This enhances visibility for all the stakeholders of the shipping process. In a sector when an instant response is absolutely crucial, FreightViewer could add operational efficiency.
FreightViewer is reducing The Cooperative’s members’ expenses, saving their time, eliminating manual error, augmenting visibility and security, and minimizing the steps involved in shipping operations.
“FreightViewer not only helps members with instant quote generation. It can also help them to simplify the tasks of an extremely complicated business. Furthermore, it can improve their customer service by enhancing the response time they give to their clients”.
The future of FreightViewer
The updates and projects
Presently, The Cooperative is negotiating new strategic partnerships with other industry-leading companies. “We have initiated conversations with Webcargonet to enable us to upload and update more than 14 million buying airfreight rates to FreightViewer. We are also working on the process of reaching competitive insurance rates for members. Furthermore, we are planning to find a way to help members upload their rates without any effort”
Every year, The Coop’s IT department works hard to improve the tool. This will greatly enhance its potential as a mighty online tool to accelerate the operations of freight forwarders.
Why digital transformation is the need of the hour?
At the moment, it has become imperative for logistics companies to enhance the level of customer engagement. By minimizing the response time, FreightViewer will give freight forwarders the required capacity to meet their customers’ expectations. It allows them to effectively manage rates and profit margins, create personalized quotations, and send them instantly through email or PDF. Additionally, they can set up a customizable quoting webiste to offer to their clients.
The rise in the number of digital freight forwarding service providers
More than 14 years back, Maersk launched Maersk Spot Booking, their online booking platform. In the present competitive scenario, eight out of the top ten carriers have created their personal quote generation platform. Digital freight companies like Freighthub, Flexport and Freightos came into the picture in the last few years.
According to a Freightos report, only 25% of the world’s top 20 logistics companies are providing LCL online quotes. Customers wait at least two days before receiving a freight quotation. This shows the lack of visibility and transparency in the operations of most forwarders even today.
The freight forwarding industry is evolving very fast. There will be more and more digital freight forwarding service providers. One of the prerequisites of the implementation of technology is hefty investments in software and an IT team. However, independent freight forwarders often lack the enormous assets needed to implement a digital change. This is why The Cooperative decided to offer members a highly useful online tool that allows them to start the digital transformation without any investment.
“Our TMS is a dynamic tool with upgraded capabilities which is adapted to the freight forwarders realities. Moreover, it has an unbeatable advantage over any other software. Unlike the rest, The Coop is a network with more than 320 members across 135 countries. This allows our members to have rates from almost every corner of the world. We really believe that in FreightViewer rests the future of freight forwarders and our own future,” explains Mr. Cardona.
Since their inception in 1996, they have made substantial investments to enhance their services, and deliver seamless transportation solutions to their clients
Delpa Group, a Coop member in Santiago, Chile, has recently celebrated their 25th anniversary. They started as a freight forwarder in 1996. Soon they began the expansion of their services in Latin America, and became the first company to establish weekly land transport services from Brazil and Argentina to Chile.
To quote Daniel Urra, the President of Delpa Group, “We celebrated our anniversary by changing our corporate image. We want all our clients and the world to know that we are celebrating and that we continue to move forward as a company. In the last 25 years, we have come up as one of the best land cargo transportation companies in Latin America. Moreover, another great milestone has been the incorporation of new technologies to automate our work processes.”
For 25 years, they have worked with a strategic plan which they have been able to achieve progressively and successfully. Delpa Group presently has offices in 11 countries in addition to their branch offices in Chile. After working with several large national and multinational brands, they understood the importance of digitizing their operations. They have created their own CRM and constantly invest in state-of-the-art technologies that improve the productivity of their logistics processes.
“The scenario of the world economy has changed and we have had to adapt to the paradigm shift of how users buy. Additionally, we need to be updated with the new technologies that have been developed, with the time that we must spend in the dispatch of merchandise, and lastly with the logistics communication process to fulfill the expectations of all our customers,” adds Mr. Urra.
Congratulations to Delpa Group on their 25th Anniversary and all the best for the future!
“Reaching 300 members in Coop was a very exciting moment and more, bearing in mind it was in the middle of the pandemic”
This week we are publishing an interview with Isabel Magdaleno, the Agent Coordinator of Cooperative Logistics Network. Isabel is contacted by our members regularly for all their questions and for resolving any issues they might face within the network. She also supervises The Coop’s Agent Coordination Team ensuring high performance and productive output.
Before joining the Coop, Isabel has almost twenty years of experience in education, translation, and in international departments of various companies from different fields, dealing with customers from all over the world. She has gathered a broad experience in multicultural environments where she was fully committed to achieving maximum customer satisfaction.
Q. Tell us a bit about your experience with the Coop team so far. A. I have learned a lot from my co-workers at The Coop and my overall experience here has been a great one. My work consists of helping the Coop members from across the world with any questions or problems they face daily. I try my best to help sort out all the problems of our members and working in a multicultural team has taught me how to do my job sensibly and meticulously.
Q. How do you feel about The Coop reaching more than 300 members?
A. This has been one of the greatest achievements of our network in the last 6 years! Coop’s team also celebrated this moment. I strongly feel that several factors such as reputable and solvent international partners, a reasonable membership fee, the availability of a range of free online tools, a highly productive yearly conference, and the obligation to cooperate with other members and share a part of the shipments are some of the factors that are encouraging more and more quality forwarders to join our network. Currently, we have our presence in 132 countries around the world and I am sure that this number will continue to grow.
Q. Which is the most challenging aspect of working with The Coop? How do you deal with it?
A. The most difficult element of my job consists of responding to issues and enquiries from hundreds of agents from so many different countries. I strongly feel that timely response, empathy towards the complaining agent, and being familiar with the agent’s history are three ways of effective handling of the member’s issues. Moreover, I have plenty of understanding about dealing with people from all over the world and my previous job experiences in overseas departments have certainly helped me in this regard.
Q. How does the Coop help to promote the brands of the member companies?
A. Every Friday, The Coop publishes one news on their website about the recent achievements of a member which is also shared on our social media handles. This definitely helps in increasing the visibility of the member’s brand. Moreover, we have several other free PR and marketing materials for the members like a customizable brochure for the members for presenting to their clients, a personalized Powerpoint presentation for use in sales meeting, a tailor-made video about their company that can be used for promotional purposes and even a personalized website for augmenting their online presence!
“I would like to remind the members about the importance of cooperation within the network. The more you cooperate with other agents the greater are you chances of increasing your business. In the present super-competitive environment, mutual cooperation is the only way for independent forwarders to survive and succeed.
Q. Which aspects would you encourage Coop members to boost?
A. We always encourage our members to boost their online presence and take special care to be active on social networking sites. Right now having a strong online presence is important like never before. Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are ideal platforms for promoting the companies while actively interacting with the consumers. Moreover, liking, commenting, and sharing the posts of your clients/partners/network will help to boost your company’s visibility and also prompt others to do the same with your posts.
Q. What is the potential of The Coop’s TMS FreightViewer?
A. Our innovative online tool which can be used by the members at no extra cost will help to reduce the workload of the members by eliminating the process of manual quote generation for good. When used in the right way it will provide them with one single easy to use platform for obtaining freight rates and sending accurate quotations instantly. Moreover, our IT team has been working relentlessly to improve the features of this platform and in December we have finally entered into a partnership with SHIPCO which will allow our agents to access LCL rates in more than 30 countries from the FreightViewer. Our recent additions to the platform have made this tool even more dynamic and useful than before and we are hoping that with time more and more members will utilize this software to substitute many of their manual work processes.
Q. Before concluding, is there any important advice you will like to give to The Coop members?
A. I would like to remind Coop members about the importance of cooperation within the network and participation in Meetings. The more they cooperate with other agents the greater are their chances of increasing your business. In the present super-competitive environment, mutual cooperation is the only way for independent forwarders to survive and succeed. And one way to meet all the members at once is by participating in our Annual Meetings. Our members always say that after the meetings, they have closed many deals and agreements.
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!
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!
The Cooperative Logistics Network has established a partnership with Group Futurista for the Future of Digital SCM 3.0 Show
Supply Chain is going through tremendous changes all in a year, the pandemic has laid bare the underlying vulnerabilities and problems in the organization’s business models. This has led to reveal the incompetence of most companies in managing their supply chain networks in a digitally integrated frame.
Usage of Data Analytics, Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), etc. Has opened opportunities for growth, innovation, and gaining competitive advantage by leading the change to build an interconnected supply chain network for the organizations.
To lead the initiative of Digital overhaul in the Supply Chain, Group Futurista, the leading Global Events, and PR Company are ready to bring the third edition of the ‘Future of Digital Supply Chain in a Post-COVID World’ webinar #FODS3.0 on 21st January 2021 at 10:00 EST / 15:00 GMT.
#FODS3.0, a unique platform with 150+ Key Decision-makers that brings together collective knowledge sharing and networking amongst the leading Supply Chain & Logistic Players, Retail Giants, Warehousing Solution providers, Startups, Tech Providers, Government, and Investors to enable all across Europe and North America.
Access to the online summit is free and interested supply chain professionals can register here. We’d like to mention our Platinum Sponsors Kinaxis, Concentric, Project44, Elementum INC as well as our Gold Sponsor Instafreight supporting our webinar.
Pierre Perdoux – Senior Vice President, Procurement Operations, Airbus
Topic: How Digital Solutions can support performance improvement within the Supply Chain?