COOP agent in Bremen, Hamburg and Frankfurt names FreightViewer as the game-changer tool for members

After testing our Transport Management Software, Mika, from Kopf & Luebben GMBH, states that FreighViewer is a great opportunity to take the next step towards digitization.
Mika Seebeck, in charge of the airfreight and EDI in Kopf & Luebben GMBH, is now working with FreightViewer and comments that software will be the next important step for K&L to optimize the daily business process

Mr. Mika states: “FreightViewer will become a really useful and important tool for K+L. Our customers no longer need to wait for our quotations, they just enter the shipment details and immediately obtain the cost for their shipment. Additionally, it will save a lot of time for us, since we do not need to calculate and offer rates manually to our agents and customers. And as you know, time is money

Our agent also comments that: “All Members can use it for free and save much time with this tool. The software can use the rates from other COOP members as well and if a customer of K+L needs the delivery charges in another country the system will check if a COOP member has uploaded valid import rates and uses these rates for the quotation […]It can help all COOP Members in their daily business process and it is a feature which nearly all our competitors are unable to provide”

FreightViewer Department will be happy to assist you if you may need any assistance with the use of the software or if you would like to know more about the system by scheduling a personalized demo. Please contact amartin@thecooperativelogisticsnetwork.com

COOP agent in Ahmedabad and Mumbai encourages all members to use FreightViewer in order reduce time to quote and easily share rates between agents

Our member, Mr. Ajay Shukla, from Translog Express PVT LTD, has given very interesting suggestions to improve FreightViewer and make it even more useful

After the launch of The COOP’s exclusive software, FreightViewer Department has been receiving plenty of applications from our members to test the software and suggest its improvements. Ajay Shukla, Executive Director of Translog Express PVT LTD, has been collaborating with FreightViewer Department and is now willing to start to work with FreightViewer.

Ajay Shukla states: “FreightViewer is a very good tool and I think it will save a lot of time in quoting rates between agents, as once shared with each other the rates are available online,It also helps forwarders who do not have elaborate and expensive software to easily keep track of their quotes and approvals from their customers […] it will be extremely useful as trusted agents can share the rates and quote to their customer instantaneously” 

Our member, Ajay, has also suggested to have several detailed quotes in one page and a more simple solution for air rates. All these comments have been quite useful for FreightViewer Department and have helped us to improve the tool. Following our member’s statements, we are sure FreightViewer will enable all members of The COOP to reduce time to quote and save costs as it isa free tool for members.

FreightViewer Department will be happy to assist you if you may need any assistance with the use of the software or would like to know more about the system by scheduling a personalized demo, by contacting amartin@thecooperativelogisticsnetwork.com. We will be happy to assist you.

The Cooperative takes a major step towards the digitization of the freight forwarding sector by creating FreightViewer

Madrid, Spain October 2019: After two years of hard work and substantial private investments, The Coop with agents in 286 cities and 124 countries is all set to start working with its member-exclusive Transport Management Software, FreightViewer. This software will provide the members of The Cooperative the technological capability to compare competitive online freight rates, share shipping documents, and quote instantly in real-time all in one neatly organized platform.

Freight forwarding sector is aware about the need of digitization in the industry. The best example to show this fact, is the great investment of technological companies such as Flexport, Freightos or other pioneer freight forwarding multinationals, e.g. Twill and KN Freightnet, have done during the last few years. But even, after all these investments and efforts, a considerable percentage of freight forwarders continue to miss out on the digitalization race in the freight industry.

Even though it is not an easy task to become digitalize within this industry, highly demanding and inpatient customers, multinationals and globalization, are some of the factors which are forcing an important transformation in logistics sector. Inside this environment, The Coop has developed FreightViewer, revolutionizing the old ways of working. As a member-exclusive and free Transport Management Software, FreightViewer allows members of the network to automatize the uploading of their contract rates (Air, FCL, LCL and Cargo Insurance) through the online platform and share them with agents or customers instantly. Moreover, FreightViewer on the dashboard allows customers and agents to manage bookings for any carrier online, collaborate and share the shipping documents, and offer real-time status updates for shipments.

As stated by Antonio Torres, the CEO and President of The Coop, “The new tool is going to help freight forwarders within our network cope with the problem of ever-changing freight rates due to complex tariffs, various time zones and unresponsive overseas agents, which eventually leads to a delay in quoting a door-to-door service.”

FreightViewer will ensure that all members will become truly digital freight forwarders. Mr. Torres further added that “Digitization of the freight forwarding sector is starting but very slowly. For example, only three of the top twenty global freight forwarders can provide an instant quote online. We feel very proud to be part of the digitization process in our industry. The Coop is the first international freight forwarding network to launch instant quoting ability for its members. We have come up with FreightViewer after the launch of the operating system by the industry leader Flexport, who has received one billion $ investment, has eleven offices in four countries and is currently receiving all the attention world-wide from media related to the industry as it is growing incredibly. We haven’t a received a billion-dollar investment, but we have developed a state-of-art software and we have a huge worldwide infrastructure formed by our members. This makes us one of the biggest players running in the digital race of the logistics sector. Our main aim is to contribute towards actualizing the process of digitization in this sector and thereby create value for the shippers.”

FreightViewer will definitely alter the way independent freight forwarders conduct their businesses. It will not just reduce the quotation processing time from a number of days to a couple of seconds, but also help to enhance the productivity, client engagement, and profitability of the member companies.

Interview with Devadas K.M., Fortune Logistics

“Our company was founded back in 2000 and our founding members came with over 40 years of experience in the industry. We are capable of handling any kind and size of shipments by sea or air with 100% infrastructure and tailor-made customer services. ”

This week we are publishing an interview with Devadas K.M. the Founder and Director of Fortune Logistics, a Coop member in Chennai, India. In this interview, he talks about his company, its achievements and how they are preparing themselves for the future.

Q. Can you tell us a little about Fortune Logistics’ history?
A. Our company was founded back in 2000 and our founding members come with over 40 years of experience in the industry. We are capable of handling any kind and size of shipments by sea or air with 100% infrastructure and tailor-made customer services.

Q. What distinguishes Fortune from other freight forwarders in your city?

A. What makes us different is our instant response and transparent and client-centric transactions.

Q. Which was your experience before running Fortune Logistics?

A. Before establishing FORTUNE LOGISTICS in the year 2000, I acquired experience in handling breakbulk cargo ships, bulk cargo ships, tankers, etc. acting as a chartering agent or as an owner agent for container lines like CONTSHIP, UASC, CMA, MISC, OEL, DONGNAMA etc., and represented as agents for Leading Multinational Freight Forwarders like AEI, KUHNE & NAGEL, JAS, CLASQUIN CDG, FRACHT AG. Afterwards, I founded Fortune Logistics and now I am also running an e-commerce business and I own a 15 hectares organic farm.


“Prompt communication, swift service, transparent dealing and a friendly and client-centric attitude are surely the keys to boosting the efficiency of any freight forwarding company”

Q. Apart from being the Director of Fortune Logistics, did you develop other roles in the logistics sector?

A. I am also a shareholder of the new International Airport called Kannur International Airports Limited (KIAL) which is the 4th best and largest international airports in India. I have also invested in land and infrastructure to develop this new airport. Moreover, I’ve been a HAM (Amateur Radio Operator) in the past 29 years with friends in more than 140 countries. I’ve traveled to over 63 countries for this shipping business and also for meeting my Amateur Radio friends. 

Q. What is your opinion about Corporate Social Responsibility?

A. I actively cooperate with organizations that deal with Disaster Communication (tsunami, cyclone, earthquake, etc) which has contributed to save many lives. I have even earned many certificates because of this. Additionally, I am a past president of the Rotary Club and I’ve made donations of over $ 10,000 for polio eradication drive.

Q. Which is the most difficult shipment your team has had to deliver?

A. It is true that size doesn’t matter since our most difficult shipment was a PCB of 500 grams from London to Mangalore. We had to carry out the task within 3 days since the shipment was very critical without which an IT company would have been totally frozen. Though small, transporting this shipment was an achievement. Nevertheless, the largest shipment handled by us was a 600 TEU shipment within 30 days.

Q. Which do you think are the keys to increase the freight forwarding services efficiency?

A. Prompt communication, swift service, transparent dealing, and a friendly and client-centric attitude are surely the keys to boost the efficiency of any freight forwarding company.

Q. How do you see the future of the freight forwarding industry?

A. The advances in technology will allow us to augment our work volume with less manpower and better profit margins.

Q. Tell us an anecdote about your company.

A. Nearly 35 years back I gave a lift to a Greek guy walking inside the harbor under the scorching sun. He was a captain of a ship and his ship’s agent refused to drop him since he had an urgent meeting. Although I had a vessel waiting for berth allotment, I offered a lift to the captain who thanked me and asked for my business card. After 6-7 months I received a Telex message from this captain stating that his company wants to appoint me as their agent and we handled 7 continuous shipments with break-bulk cargo from which my company earned nearly $300,000. A simple support to a foreigner resulted in a superb business opportunity!

Interview: Saqib Mehmood, The Vision Shipping

“Good customer service with prompt reply and the ability to quote rates quickly and accurately are some of the factors which can lead to a Freight Forwarder’s success”

This week we interviewed Saqib Mehmood, Director of The Vision Shipping LLC- a Coop member in Dubai UAE. Among other things, Saqib talks about the benefits of attending our Annual Meeting and sheds some light on how to be successful in the freight forwarding industry.

Q. Can you tell us a little about The Vision Shipping’s history? 

A. I founded TVSL group- a company providing various shipping and logistics services in 2009. With a proven background in the freight forwarding industry, we have served customers from all parts of the world. Over the years, we have become our client’s most reliable option and we carry the same image even today. TVSL is undoubtedly, one of the most renowned companies in the city and we’re making it big with each day passing.

Q. What distinguishes The Vision Shipping from other freight forwarders in your city?

A. Our services are more focused on the domestic and international transportation of both domestic and commercial goods. The service is mandatory for the companies, which are engaged in transporting a wide range of products to overseas market. We are committed to achieving high levels of customer satisfaction by ensuring quality, cost effective services and timely freight forwarding and logistical solutions. Apart from Air and Sea, we also use LTL, FTL, and Intermodal (rail) to move freight. What sets us apart is our ability to deliver the best service on time.

 Q. Which is the most difficult shipment your team has had to deliver?

A. Although we keep handling a lot of complex shipments on a regular basis, moving the Rig Moment from the Gulf of Mexico to India had indeed been a challenging task.

Q. How did you hear about The Cooperative Logistics Network? What attracted you most to The Coop?

A. We were curious about your network when we heard about it from an acquaintance in the industry. I immediately followed up and all the answers to my scrutinizing questions were answered satisfactorily. It was then that we joined as a founding member and here we are still. Full transparency, clear cut information, friendly members, professionally organized Annual Meeting and follow up, and an uncomplicated Payment Protection Programme are some of the factors which attracted us most to your network.

Q. What are the main technological challenges facing freight forwarders at the moment? How important is technology for the industry? 

A. With every passing year, the role of technology in the freight forwarding world is steadily increasing. Technology is now enabling things like predictive analytics, real-time visibility, and enhanced customer service. Freight forwarders of our times need to be updated with all the latest technologies in the industry otherwise they would run the risk of falling behind their competitors. Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in your country at the moment? A. The transparency and the ruthless competition of carriers and logistic providers, increasing traffic, and related congestion, strikes and hijacking are some of the most common issues faced by freight forwarders in UAE. Moreover, we need to keep pace with the rapidly changing laws and directives and inform our customers about them before our competitors do. I realize these issues are not exclusive to our country.

Q. From your own experience, what are the keys to success in the freight forwarding industry?

A. The first step has to be introspection. One needs to analyze where they currently stand in the market, their strengths and weakness. Once the problems are identified, the freight forwarding companies need to focus more on their strengths and work on their weakness and convert that into their strength. Moreover, one needs to identify their client’s exact needs, to make a tailor-made service. Freight forwarders should always keep in mind that low rates are not always the deciding factor to gain a business. If a freight forwarder can provide top-notch services while offering a decent rate, then there is no looking back for that company. Good customer service with prompt reply & the ability to quote rates quickly and accurately are some of the factors which can lead to a company’s success. Lastly, a freight forwarding company have to have a proper marketing team with a good marketing strategy in place to promote their organization at the global level.

Interview with Steinacher Logistics

“The main challenge facing the freight forwarders industry is the transparency” Eduard Van Put, the Managing Director of Steinacher Logistics, a COOP member in Antwerp. 


Steinacher Logistics is an AEO certified company which started its operations back in 1972. One of the most competent international forwarding agents of our time, Steinacher Logistics deals in all sorts of multimodal transport focussing on maritime transportation. Since 1992 they are acting as a financial representative in EU and September 2007 onwards they have been a member of the worldwide logistics network.

This month we catch up with Eduard Van Put, the Managing Director of Steinacher Logistics, a COOP member in Antwerp.

Q. When and how did you get into the freight forwarding industry?

A.I started as a young lad in the industry, 45 years ago in 1972. After a few years, I caught the logistics bug. The numerous worldwide contacts, destinations and origins I came to know taught me that the world is more than the street I lived on. Becoming immersed in the world of logistics, I came to understand the long and complex journey a product travels on, from mold to sold – from manufacture to being gift wrapped.


Q. Can you tell us a little of the history of STEINACHER LOGISTICS? 

A.The company was originally founded in 1884, however In 1979 it was taken over by an Antwerp family well known in the city’s port. In 2007 the company was relaunched as STEINACHER LOGISTICS to develop the logistics side of the company.

Q. What distinguishes STEINACHER LOGISTICS from other freight forwarders in your city?

A. We know all the cliché lines, but to quote our slogan, “a team that makes the difference”. Agents really do appreciate our special service. The team’s professionalism and efficiency is served with a friendly flavor, concern for customers needs and a positive attitude. It’s a team that I am very proud to be part of but, of course, I cannot reveal the secret formula of makes it all work!

Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in your country at the moment?

A. Transparency. An advantage on one hand, but also a disadvantage when misused. The ruthless competition of carriers and logistic providers, increasing traffic and related congestion, strikes and hijacking of not only the man on the street but also the economy, to obtain rights whilst forgetting duties. Rapidly changing laws and directives that urges us to keep pace with, and to inform, our customers before our competitors do. I realize these issues are not exclusive to our country.

Q. How is the freight forwarders industry dealing with these challenges?

A. Our professional association advises us in advance of any changes, new regulations, and challenges in near future.


Q. How is STEINACHER LOGISTICS dealing with these challenges daily?

A. Keeping our customers well-informed. Forging partnerships with carriers, and even competitors. Creating opportunities and offering intelligent solutions. Not merely acting as a supplier but as an accountable partner.

Q. How did you hear about The Cooperative Logistics Network?


A. At the end of 2014 I learnt from Thomas Manigk, CEO of Kopf & Lübben, that his company was joining The COOP. Knowing Thomas’ standards, I became curious. As the answers to my scrutinizing questions were answered satisfactorily, we then joined as a founding member, and here we are still, in 2017.

Q. What attracted you most about The Cooperative Logistics Network?


A. Clear cut information, no nonsense approach, user-friendly website, professionally organized Annual Meeting and follow up, crystal clear conditions, and an uncomplicated Payment Protection Programme


Q. What would be the most significant shipment your team has handled?

A.Over the last 38 years, we’ve handled O.O.G. and heavyweight machinery and projects, such as 60 M.T. of chocolate by air to Australia at short notice for Christmas, 124 T.E.U.’s to the United Arab Emirates just before New Year, as well as an airfreight shipment of an engine, a so-called A.O.G. However, one of the most challenging activities is the logistics we coordinate is for antiques and fine arts customers and exhibitions worldwide, which requires extra special care.

Q. What were the challenges with this shipment and how did your team overcome them?

A. The big challenge is usually meeting deadlines without delay. Complicated custom formalities, inspections, licenses on both sides of the ocean, delays of vessel or flights, and so on can be tricky. On one occasion, a big airfreight shipment booked ahead of time was held back by a carrier to give priority to a shipment of horses, as it generated a higher income. It goes without saying that our logistic partner needed to run faster than the horses to make it work! and in the end they did.

Q. Where do you see STEINACHER LOGISTICS N.V. in 10 years?

A. Branding and continuously upgrading our qualified service in a volatile and challenging world that is constantly evolving, and sharing a toast with all the stakeholders, of a cocktail made up of our core values.

We invite members with shipments from/to Antwerp to get in touch with the team.

Eduard Van Put
evp@stlog.be
www.stlog.be

Interview with Shine Logistics

“We anticipate all of the small and large challenges that we could come up against in our industry and have a plan for each eventuality”
COOP Seoul – SHINE LOGISTICS has successfully evolved from humble beginnings to a now having a renowned local and worldwide reputation. Their key for success is Speed, Simplicity and the personal touch. This week, President Chan-Bin Im, told us a bit more about their story and their present challenges.

Q. When and how did you get into the freight forwarding industry?
A. I actually started out at a trading company in Korea before making the career change into freight forwarding in 1999.

Q. Can you tell us a little of the history of Shine Logistics?
A. My co-worker and I decided to establish SHINE in 2004, wanting to create something that was different from other competitors, by listening to customers to shape our business plan. We believe honestly is the best policy, and have an excellent relationship with our clients to this day.

Q. What distinguishes Shine Logistics from other freight forwarders in your city? 
A. We personalise every aspect of the service for our client. We understand that freight forwarding isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ business. This is a big difference from most freight forwarding companies who standardize their services. Our approach has proven popular so far, with many return customers.

Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in Korea now?
A. Last year, Hanjin’s Shipping collapsed suddenly. Things like that are a shock, but they happen. Many of the big shipping lines are starting to merge with each as a result, which can either be a good thing or a bad thing for us. So for now, if this means forming closer ties with similar companies, then that is something we will be prepared to do.

Q. How is the freight forwarding industry tackling these challenges?
A. Preparation! You have to expected the unexpected. An important part of this is having a close relationship with shipping partners.

Q. How is Shine Logistics dealing with these challenges daily?
A. We have a strong team. Even staff who are not on the front line of the logistics side of things learn all the in’s and out’s of the business so they can deal with all challenges, and provide quality customer service.

Q. What are the challenges of shipping steel and how do your team overcome them?

A. Most shipping lines don’t like taking steel because it weighs so much. As I said, this where a strong relationship with shipping lines make the difference, and we have built a solid group of partners over time.

Q. What would be the most significant shipment your team has handled?

A.Our main commodity is steel goods like a STS coils, round bar, plate, tube and all other forms of steel. We ship a lot both domestically and abroad.
Q. Where do you see Shine Logistics in 10 years?
A. My dream is for Shine to become one of the biggest freight forwarding companies in Korea and the world. We believe this possible as long as we continue to pursue excellent and confidential customer service, which has held us in great stead until now.

Interview with EU Dragon Express

This month we catch up with Edward Lee, the Managing Director of EU DRAGON EXPRESS LTD a COOP member in Guangzhou.

Q. When and how did you get into the freight forwarding industry?

A.It was like fate, I graduated from university and worked in a US company in R&D department however I didn’t feel good doing that sort of work, I finally got an offer to work for a large freight forwarding company. After that, I created my own company and it’s still going 20 years later.

Q. Can you tell us a little of the history of EU DRAGON EXPRESS LTD? 

A. I set up EU DRAGON EXPRESS in 2005 in Shanghai and expanded to 7 offices across China including Guangzhou and HKG. In the beginning, we were much more air freight export oriented, but overtime, we have built up also strong sea freight. We foresaw that China would become a consuming market, so we invested heavily on selling eastbound business. Since that time, we have been one step ahead of 95% of our competitors in terms of building a significant eastbound business volume/customer base.

Q. What distinguishes EU DRAGON EXPRESS LTD from other freight forwarders in your city?

A. 

• Full service oriented mentality to provide our customer whatever service they require

• Specialize in certain niche markets building up our unique ability in certain routes/markets which making it hard for our competitors to reach us.

• A sales oriented mentality, even in operations and customer service; ‘everyone sells ‘. It is one of our key philosophies.

Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in the China at the moment? 

A. Wow! That’s a big question which can be answered many ways. In my opinion, the main challenges are;

• Negative global economic climate and the Chinese economy is no exception. There has been a huge impact on the export industry, which has caused the business volume to shrink.

• Everchanging market rates (weekly) cause unnecessary amounts of work. Carriers react to the changes by raising rates (almost daily) making the process much harder.

• Majority of agents in China provide similar service ranges for export creating a competition based purely on rates.

• A declining interest from the younger generation. They are not encouraged to join the forwarding industry any more, which combined with a loss of experience to other industries means that we are potentially facing a skills gap.

Q. How is EU DRAGON EXPRESS LTD dealing with these challenges daily?

A. We have taken more measures to deal with these current challenges, a few examples are as follows;

• Investing heavily in a professional team of people to further forge our ‘service oriented’ philosophy

• Focus on certain niche markets such as savings/capacity control /fixed scheduled regular services, which would make a great cost saving to our clients.

• Developing unique products like GOH & Automotive business

• Expanding any new demand of services for the future like the railway express service between China and Europe for both eastbound and westbound cargo.

• Implementing all kinds of new technology to improve our logistics systems, from a more efficient tracking system to the booming e-commerce daily operation

Q. What plans does EU DRAGON EXPRESS LTD have for the future?

A. We will be expanding our footprint in 5 more locations within next 3 years, strength our inland warehousing/distribution products, further develop our 4PL business soon, to provide all our clients/partners a full range of logistics service

Q. What attracted you to apply for membership of the COOP?

A. The COOP is a professional network including many professional freight forwarders worldwide which give us an opportunity to compete with those multinational players.

Q. If you have been a member of other networks in the past, how does being a member of the COOP differ?

A. Yes, we have been in other networks, and being member of COOP, we feel a friendly approach with all members. The COOP service team is very professional, when dealing with some problems/issues such as when a member was credit checking and we have been given the advice and assistance immediately.

Q. What benefits are you seeing as a member of The COOP?

A. The biggest benefit is we have a platform to know many likeminded partners world-wide to strive together developing mutual business opportunities.

We invite members with shipments in Guangzhou to get in touch with the team.

Edward.Lee@eudragon.com 

 

Interview with Con Truck

Manfred Haenisch of CON-TRUCK LOGISTIC GMBH, a member of The COOP in Hamburg, recently spoke with us about his journey into freight forwarding and what makes CON-TRUCK stand out from the Hamburg forwarding crowd.

Q. When and how did you get into the freight forwarding industry? 

A. In 1970, when I left school, I started my apprenticeship of three years with Kühne & Nagel – Hamburg. After my graduation as freight forwarder at the Chamber of Commerce Hamburg and serving 15 month with the German forces, I started again in 1975, as a forwarding agent at Kühne & Nagel – project shipments to the Persian / Arabian Gulf and the Red Sea area.

As I originally wanted to train as a ships agent/broker, I had the chance to work from Oct 1976 to the end of 1977 as a trainee at a shipping agency in London. I had been assigned as a trainee to the Baltic Exchange in there, where I learned a lot about the chartering business which has been very helpful over the years. After returning to Hamburg in 1978, I started working in several forwarding companies in Hamburg, particularly from 1979 to 2012 in the export market to Brazil and as well worldwide both in ocean and airfreight. Since 2013, I have been with Con-Truck Logistic in Hamburg.

Q. Can you tell us a little of the history of CON-TRUCK LOGISTIC GMBH? 

A. Con-Truck was founded as a container trucking company in 1988 and in 1995 a shipping department was opened by Dieter Grabeljesk and Michael Skaritsch who took over the company at the time as equal partners.

Container trucking as an official part of the company was given up in 2010 and only the shipping department remained.

The shipping department started off with Michael and Dieter and one lady for documentation. Together they handled the business of Con-Truck’s major market, exporting to West Africa. This continues to be a major market for us. Con-Truck was/is offering a full service to our clients, commercial and private persons, for shipment to African countries. This includes trucks, cars, vans (new and used) as well as FCL and LCL cargo. We offer a large number of rent-container for short term and long term rent on our premises which are used by a number of clients to store their belongings when it’s worthwhile, they order an export container and Con-Truck arranges the shipment including the export customs handling.

Since 1995, the company has grown to a total of eleven staff working in operations, documentation, customs service, sales, bookkeeping as well as three forwarding apprentices. Con-Truck, as well as offering loading of container, warehousing and haulage of export vehicles from our clients too, we also have three drivers and three container loading/stuffing staff.

Q. What distinguishes CON-TRUCK LOGISTIC GMBH from other freight forwarders in your city? 

A. Con-Truck is one of the few forwarding companies specialized in the field of exporting to Africa with its own 10000m2 yard and 900m2 warehouse, forklift equipment of 2 x 2mt, 1 x 6mt, 1x 16mt, 1 x 36mt which enables us to arrange the movement of almost any kind of cargo for loading container. Also, we run 2 trucks (12m trailer) for the pick-up of cars with 12 to capacity which can load up to 3 cars/ vehicles. Which we use for pick up of vehicles at our clients within an area of 300 – 400 km around Hamburg, for vehicles instead delivered, direct to the RORO terminal, to our facilities. We run another pickup truck able to load 2 vehicles.

As well we are very flexible in moving Container to and from our yard with our own Truck, which give the advantage to us and our clients to work more flexible in respect of closing times for container deliveries for outbound ocean vessels.

This all give Con-Truck an advantage against our competitors who are working in the same field of business on ocean exports to west Africa. As well to our partners and clients for whom we load container with vehicles and general cargo

Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in the Germany at the moment?

A. The main challenge, not only for German forwarders, right now is the compensation on business to the Fareast in particular China, as well as the Russian market. But there are many other problems to be taken care off as “the cake is getting smaller and everybody would like a slice”. The best example of this are the shipping lines who are offering lower rates in order to get better utilization of their vessel, forcing forwarders to do the same, which results in forwarders struggling to make money.

As well I personally think that the service of the forwarders needs to more respected by the customers and paid for instead of making changes because one is quoting 5 – 10 € less. Service has to be paid for, poor payments for service never means that a good service is provided.

Q. How is the freight forwarding industry tackling these challenges?

A. Every forwarding company is tackling them alone by analyzing the market(s) and reacting accordingly.

Q. How is CON-TRUCK LOGISTIC GMBH dealing with these challenges on a daily basis? 

A. Con-Truck is analyzing the changes on a daily basis for our particular business and trying to find solutions for us and our customer. Currently, there are the restrictions on money transfers and inflation in Nigeria, a big problem, and here we are trying to find solutions for our customers day to day, but unfortunately there is very little we can do.

Q. What attracted you to apply for membership of the COOP?

A. Con-Truck has never been a member of any network before and we are enjoying the Membership at the COOP, as it gives us the advantage of increasing our business and provide us with the chance to be able to give a better “full service” to our clients.

Q. What benefits are you seeing as a member of The COOP?

A. As mentioned before, we are seeing an increase in the number of worldwide partners as the network continues to grow. This consequently means that every member has a real chance of being a global player without needing to run their own offices all over the world.

We invite members with shipments in Hamburg are invited to get in touch with the team.

 

Manfred Haenisch 

Interview with Casco Logistica Solucoes LTDA

Kleber Fontes, Director of CASCO SOLUCOES LOGISTICAS LTDA, began his freight forwarding career 10 years ago. Since then he has taken the company from a small business entity to one of the leading freight forwarders in Brazil. Kleber recently spoke with us about the journey his company has been on over the past decade, its secret to success as well as how it deals on a daily basis with the challenges facing the freight forwarding industry.

Q. Can you tell us a little of the history of CASCO SOLUCOES LOGISTICAS LTDA? 

A. Founded in 2005 by Paulo Henrique Leite Ferreira, Grupo Casco began as a custom clearing company and started its activities proper the following year offering international agency service charges and customs clearance. In 2007, a new division was initiated with the formation of a specialized operating team. In a year of great challenges for the company, Grupo Casco achieved significant growth and a stronger customer base. In 2009, start up projects focused on Total Quality! The entire management of Grupo Casco has become strategically committed by utilizing the Quality and Standards program that best fits each of its customers’ needs.

By 2011, Grupo Casco had consolidated its place in the market, maintained growth rates and received recognition of all work done. We were granted the Aster Award for being an ‘Outstanding Company’ in the category ‘Entrepreneurship’ and ‘For the continued growth of Grupo Casco’, we were awarded by ESIC Marketing & Business School.

2012 began with the strengthening of the company’s equity elements: Customers and employees. Special programs of training and integration were developed for a direct and functional channel of communication that focuses on building relationships with our customers. In 2013, we started the project to develop the internal management system aimed at the complete management of the company anywhere in the world, and real-time information. This is the desire and the focus of the entire board and Grupo Casco team, transforming the credibility and strength of a large business.

Q. What distinguishes CASCO SOLUCOES LOGISTICAS LTDA from other freight forwarders in your city? 

A. Customer service is our main focus – our experienced team suggests solutions to customers that at times are not obvious giving us clear credibility and customers’ confidence.

Q. What are the main challenges facing freight forwarders in Brazil at the moment?

A. There is a lot of competition in Brazil amongst small and medium sizes companies – maintaining the status quo is not enough, solutions need to be creative. Growing your business by leveraging your strengths, exclusively, is challenging so we need to operate with a sound business strategy in order to succeed.

Q. How is the freight forwarding industry tackling these challenges?

A. Innovation. There are other ways, but the process of innovation is evident and must be continuous and well aligned with the company’s objectives. Everything depends on the business model and ambition of the company.

Q. How is CASCO SOLUCOES LOGISTICAS LTDA dealing with these challenges on a daily basis? 

A. It’s challenging, but motivational, both mistakes and successes happen often. The important thing is to recognize and leverage the successes and learn from our mistakes. Currently, Group Casco has dealt with these challenges by optimizing the operational process development team, investment in industry events, staying on top of the latest news in the market, investing in marketing and always being creative, both in in-house solutions and the vision of the business.

Q. What attracted you to apply for membership of the COOP?

A. The credibility and the possibility to expand Grupo Casco in this sector with large companies and also expand our business based on member’s need by offering great service which in turn will build strong relationships with members.

Q. What benefits are you seeing as a member of The COOP? 

A. Trust is a big benefit for us. As a member of The Coop, we carry a credibility and reliability which is evident to all our fellow members and vice versa, which can then be passed on to customers. In addition, our membership is allowing us to provide a truly worldwide service to our customers and prospective clients. Grupo Casco has always worked within Brazil, but after our joining The COOP, we started working with the whole world.

We invite members with shipments in Curitiba to get in touch with the team. 

KLEBER FONTES