The Baltic Exchange’s main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose for the fifth straight session on Tuesday, propelled by strong demand for capesize vessels.
The overall index, which factors in rates for capesize, panamax and supramax shipping vessels, rose 26 points, or 1.5 percent, to 1,721 points.
The capesize index was up 97 points, or 3 percent, at 3,335 points.
Average daily earnings for capesizes, which typically transport 170,000-180,000 tonne cargoes such as iron ore and coal, rose by $593 to $25,580, gaining $3,458 over the last five sessions.
The panamax index was up 1 point at 1,530 points.
Average daily earnings for panamaxes, which usually carry coal or grain cargoes of about 60,000 to 70,000 tonnes, increased $10 to $12,254, recording an increase for the ninth straight session.
The supramax index rose 5 points to 1003 points.
(Reporting by Kishan Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)
The big supermarket chains have been casting around for ways to hang on to market share in the face of a determined assault from the discounters.
Malory Davies, Editor.
The scale of the problem is highlighted in figures from Kantar Worldpanel. Between October 2014 and June 2018, Aldi’s market share has grown from 4.8 per cent to 7.4 per cent. Lidl’s share has grown from 3.7 per cent to 5.4 per cent.
In contrast, Tesco is down from 28.8 per cent to 27.7 per cent, Asda is down from 17.3 per cent to 15.1 per cent and Sainsbury’s is down from 16.1 per cent to 15.6 per cent.
It’s worth remembering that globally both Aldi and Lidl are huge. Lidl turns over some €70 billion, while Aldi, which does not reveal its figures publicly, has been estimated to turn over between €50 billion and €65 billion.
Consolidation is one approach. Tesco has taken the lead with its takeover of Booker and plans a strategic alliance with French group Carrefour coving the strategic relationship with global suppliers, the joint purchasing of own brand products and goods not for resale.
Sainsbury’s has broadened its operations with the Argos takeover, and is planning to take over Asda.
And now research from consultancy Scala has highlighted the increased focus on streamlining product ranges.
Currently the typical discount retailer has 7,500 SKUs, compared to 30,000 for a traditional supermarket. Tesco has already said it will remove up to 30 per cent of its product lines as part of its Project Reset.
Scala reckons that as a result of streamlined product lines, SKU count will reduce by ten per cent on average for grocery suppliers, due to in-store rationalisation and reduced demand for promotional SKUs, pointing out that this will have a significant impact on logistics.
“Average order sizes placed by the UK’s largest retailers have increased by an average of 5.6 per cent since 2015, while at the same time shoppers continue to move to ‘little and often’ purchasing of grocery and FMCG products.”
The impact of these developments will be profound. Already, the Forum for Private Business, which represents SMEs, has called on Sainsbury’s to provide assurances to its supply chain about squeezing margins further following its combination with Asda.
And this is not the end of the process. Whatever the result of the Brexit negotiations, the impact will continue to fuel change in grocery supply chains.
Volga-Dnepr Group and CargoLogicHolding have today signed letters of intent to acquire 29 Boeing 777 freighters, and ordered five B747-8Fs.
The deals were announced at the 2018 Farnborough International Airshow and based on current list prices are valued at $11.8bn.
The deal also includes the purchase of a crew pairing solution, and an agreement to work together on future freighter projects.
“This is a very significant day in our company’s history. With this package of agreements, we will grow our business with the unique and unmatched 747-8 Freighter and open new market opportunities with the 777 Freighter, the world’s longest range twin-engine cargo jet,” said Alexey Isaykin, president of Volga-Dnepr Group and Chairman of CargoLogicHolding.
“And we will work with Boeing to develop new freighter solutions that will help us continue to serve the unique and fast-changing requirements of our global customers.”
Volga-Dnepr Group is among the world’s largest B747F operators.
The Group, and its subsidiaries and strategic partners have leveraged the jet’s unique cargo-loading and cargo-carrying capabilities to build an unmatched global network for transporting unique, oversize and heavy cargo.
Volga-Dnepr said it wanted to add more B747-8 Freighters to its fleet and affirmed a commitment to purchasing five more of the jets valued at $2bn in current list prices.
“We are true believers in the 747-8 Freighter, it is a very special airplane. We fly it every day and we understand why operators around the world want more of them,” said Isaykin.
While the Group and its partners have largely built its business on very large four-engine freighters, it now plans to expand its future fleet options with a commitment for the twin-engine 777 Freighter.
CargoLogicHolding intends to order 29 Boeing 777 Freighters, valued at $9.8bn according to list prices.
The airplane’s range and significant cargo capacity promises to open up significant network and growth opportunities.
“CargoLogicAir, part of CargoLogicHolding, started its business by flying 747 scheduled and charter flights to and from the UK. We are excited to extend the network using a range of Boeing family aircraft including Boeing 747-8F, 777F, 767F and 737-800BCF,” added Isaykin.
The package of agreements also includes a commitment for both companies to explore other freighter solutions, such as new production 767 Freighters or converted cargo jets such as the 737-800 Boeing Converted Freighter.
With the resurgence in the airfreight market – demand grew nearly 10% last year – Boeing has seen a big spike in interest for cargo jets.
Boeing has now captured more than 100 orders and commitments for production and converted freighters this year.
Saj Ahmad, chief analyst at StrategicAero Research said the deal offered Volga-Dnepr the balance between capacity that can handle outsize cargo and the cost benefits of the B777F.
“The 747-8F deal with Volga Dnepr/CargoLogicHolding underscores not only the long term rigid belief by Boeing that the air freight market rebound is well underway, it also demonstrates that cargo operators are happy to invest in new technology airplanes like the 747-8F to meet the demand of their customers,” he said.
“With almost 98% of the cargo market served through Boeing freighters, anyone wanting heavy lift payload capability really only has a choice between 747-8F and 777F – and it’s no surprise that Volga Dnepr opted to select both models.
“Volga Dnepr has become synonymous with using the 747 freighter fleet across its expansive network and yet the 777F will enable them to fly even farther to new destinations while carrying slightly less in payload. In terms of costs, the 777F provides the lowest trip costs of any widebody freighter while the 747-8F allows for greater outsized shipment movements.
“Boeing will no doubt have offered favourable terms to Volga, in particular to shore up the shrinking 747 backlog – but at the same time, Volga couldn’t go elsewhere because no one offers anything remotely close to either 747-8F or 777F.
“Volga’s huge purchase underscores its international credentials and no doubt the size of the orders and commitments will make other cargo operators sit up and take note.
“While this may not portend cargo operator consolidation, it will increase competition, particularly since DHL too has signed up for a big fleet of 777 Freighters to expand its business too.”
As part of the agreements, Boeing Global Services will provide AirBridgeCargo – a Volga-Dnepr Group airline – with a Crew Pairing solution to support the planning and operation of the airline’s 300 crew members. The program creates optimized work duties, improving crew efficiency and improving airline productivity.
“This service puts the most advanced data analytics capabilities at Volga-Dnepr’s hands as they operate the most advanced freighters in the world. It’s a prime example of how Boeing integrates services solutions with the platform to help customers work better, work faster and save on operating costs,” said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales & Marketing for The Boeing Company.
Distribution and outsourcing group Bunzl has chosen DHL Global Forwarding to manage the consolidation and export of up to 1,000 TEUs of their shipments from the DHL Consolidation Center in Shanghai, China, to Bunzl’s 12 Distribution Centers across Australia and New Zealand.
DHL International Supply Chain (ISC) will use the DHL ISC CORE solution at its bonded Container Freight Station (CFS) in the Lingang Logistics Area, which is near Shanghai’s Yangshan port.
DHL said its ISC CORE solution allows for Purchase Order management, real time shipment visibility, consolidation and export customs handling in China. The International Supply Chain team also provides a “pick and pack” service, picking out products from Bunzl’s various vendors, and re-packing them with other items, depending on the requirements.
According to DHL: “This enables Bunzl to streamline the consolidation and export of cargo ranging from food packaging to linen and amenities, into key cities Down Under including — Adelaide, Auckland, Darwin, Perth and Sydney. DHL Global Forwarding also offers Bunzl 24/7 visibility of its inventory level at its Shanghai consolidation facility — a significant improvement on previous solutions that only provided visibility once goods had been received manually.”
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Africa Oil & Power, the continent’s premier platform for energy investment and policy, and the African Energy Chamber (AEC) signed a strategic partnership in Johannesburg yesterday. Both organisations will be sharing capacities to facilitate investments and deal-making in Africa across their networks.
Under the agreement, the AEC will also become an official partner of the Africa Oil & Power 2018 conference taking place September 5-7, 2018 in Cape Town. As part of the partnership, the Africa Energy Chamber is extending to all its members and partners across its network an exclusive discount of 15% to attend the summit in Cape Town from September 5-7, 2018.
“As the AEC, we always encourage all our members to seek new partners and investors and expand their horizons to support their growth across the continent. We believe Africa Oil & Power is a perfect platform for them to do that,” explained NJ Ayuk, the chamber’s chairman.
As a prestigious international forum to take place in Cape Town this fall, Africa Oil & Power is an ideal place to strike business deals and meet investors. For its third edition, Africa Oil & Power has put together a prestigious programme with 15 African petroleum and power ministers confirmed to date, 600 C-level delegates and 75+ speakers from across the continent, Europe, Asia, and the Americas spanning the entire value chain, from upstream to power generation.
As Africa’s energy sector enters a new phase of growth and oil prices stabilise around $70, AOP and the AEC have expressed their excitement over this new collaboration which capitalizes on renewed optimism across Africa’s investment community.
Guillaume Doane, the CEO of Africa Oil & Power, said: “The vision of Africa Oil & Power and the Africa Energy Chamber are the same – to combine a pro-African attitude with a pan-African influence. We are excited to have access to their extensive African energy network.”
About the Africa Energy Chamber
Headquartered in Johannesburg, the African Energy Chamber (AEC) is a progressive business network that promotes business and investment opportunities within the continent by connecting local corporations, foreign investors, and ministerial parties. The AEC unites African interests and aspirations under one voice that advocates for Africa’s companies and citizens and gives the continent a conscience on the global energy stage. From local content development to universal electricity access, the AEC’s engagement aims at placing Africa at the forefront of global energy investment and transformations.
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Apple Computer had just been established, the Concorde made its first commercial flight, and Star Wars began filming. And, while not as fun, something big was happening at travel agencies.
American Airlines had just rolled out an online booking terminal for travel agents.
It changed the industry. Travel agents’ share of bookings shot from 40% to over 80% in just years, and set the groundwork for air travel to join the digital age in 1995.
Air freight, an enormous industry, has embraced automation…but not completely. And nowhere is that more striking than capacity management and booking, with an offline loop that typically adds a full day to urgent air freight shipments. But that’s changing.
Bringing Air Capacity Online
Today, Lufthansa Cargo, together with Freightos WebCargo unveiled instant air cargo ebooking for 1,000+ forwarders, a huge leap forward into the digital era.
Through an API services and the Freightos WebCargo air freight pricing and management platform, over 1,000 forwarders can now look up contracted rates, assess capacity, and book cargo in real-time. This provides Lufthansa access to 1,000,000 monthly searches, ushering in newfound sales and operations efficiency.
Lufthansa Air Cargo’s game-changing move to digital connectivity started with a a pilot in the first week of June. Initial rollouts commenced quickly before scaling up now to a broader European rollout. So I went to Freightos WebCargo’s CEO, Manel Galindo, to hear his insights on how Freightos helped Lufthansa Cargo digitize.
Help us put this announcement in context; why is this so important for the air freight industry?
This is a huge milestone for the air freight industry.
Today the process for booking air freight is complex, with forwarders manually researching rates across multiple platforms. With this launch, forwarders can easily price and book capacity on one platform. Everything is completely automated, from initial pricing to final booking. Most importantly, Lufthansa can now offer thousands of forwarders dynamic pricing, giving them an incredible competitive advantage.
This is exactly why the B2B online automation is so incredible; with a flick of a switch, companies globally can work more efficiently and Lufthansa can easily sell more.
Can you briefly explain Freightos WebCargo’s role in this digital transformation?
Freightos WebCargo guided and facilitated this process.
Our subject matter experts have their finger on the pulse and understand the pain points that forwarders, carriers and shippers face. No less important, they have the technical expertise to address them.
This combination of technical skill and industry knowledge positioned the Freightos WebCargo team to provide Lufthansa Air Cargo what they needed to achieve a successful, swift rollout. The speed of the ebooking adoption is telling of how thirsty the industry is for this type of online platform.
When do you feel Lufthansa started to see value from the program?
I’d say immediately. The corporate headquarter level is onboard with digitization. In the field, the teams see the value from clients constantly submitting queries requesting better pricing. Lufthansa now has a direct line of communication with clients. The forwarders appreciate the ease and convenience of using one system. Time is of the essence; our joint system delivers.
What was the most challenging aspect of the pilot?
Onboarding the forwarders is by far the most labor-intensive aspect. We needed to introduce a new system to 19,000 users to ensure ebooking success. We’ve conducted on-site tutorials for 600 attendees and online courses for remote teams. It was hard but gratifying – forwarders are thrilled to move online.
What advice do you have to other carriers contemplating digitization?
Most carriers we talk to are nervous to connect because they don’t think they are ready – their prices aren’t dynamic, their booking system isn’t as strong as they’d like it to be and so on. This fear is debilitating.
My advice? Make the move and make it as fast as possible. Working with a partner like Freightos WebCargo is the fastest most efficient way to get online and start building a digital infrastructure. The only way meet market needs is deliver on client expectations.
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DHL Freight Czech Republic benefits from the favorable geographic position in Central Europe. Exports to Germany and supplying the automotive industry are the focus of their business activities.
The Czech Republic is still producing: The industrial share of the gross domestic product of the country at more than 37 percent is among the higher in the European Union. A significant part of this is made up by the automotive industry and its suppliers. Accordingly, the customer structure of DHL Freight Czech Republic is clearly focused on the supply chains of car manufacturers. More than 900 employees at six terminal locations and in four customer service centers ensure the highest quality of service. The broad range of services for main automotive customers covers everything, starting with warehousing during and after the production run, including in-house transport, or material collection at over one hundred suppliers and subsequent transport to European countries. Last but not least a short sea concept with unaccompanied trailers, for example to Sunderland in England, has been realized.
Great deal of experience
“We have been active in the Czech market since 1992 and are therefore well connected in the country and its markets. Our customers have access to a broad portfolio of transport solutions. Thanks to the close cooperation with other divisions of DHL, we can also offer tailor-made solutions for complex problems,” says Vít Návrat, Managing Director DHL Freight Central Eastern Europe. It does not matter whether customs services, warehouse logistics, or complete end-to-end processes are required.
In addition to the automotive industry as a focus industry, exporting to Germany is another strong pillar of the Czech economy. Almost a third of the foreign trade volume is generated with this neighboring country. DHL Freight also benefits from this: Sales increased to EUR 182.8 million in 2017, an increase of 5.1 percent over 2016. For Vít Návrat, however, this is also a success for the employees: “In the customer satisfaction survey, we have constantly occupied the top places in the past three years. Many customers across different industries completely rely on us in logistics. That is a sign of our competence.”
Problem area: Lack of specialists
DHL Freight Czech Republic sees challenges for the coming years above all in terms of capacities. “The shortage of drivers is worrying us. We are trying to counter this with very active advertising, long-term contracts for our subcontractors, and the purchase of additional cargo space,” explains Vít Návrat. In addition to the still unclear effects of the EU mobility packages, a general improvement of the road infrastructure in the country – especially more parking spaces along the main roads – is important for the future.
DHL Freight Czech Republic by the numbers (2017)
Warehouse area: > 50,000 m2
Subcontractor vehicles: > 7,500
LTL transports: 297,434
FTL transports: 186,630
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Der Containerumschlag der Duisburger Hafen AG (duisport) betrug im ersten Halbjahr 2018 2,01 Mio. TEU. Damit wurde das Rekordniveau vom Vorjahr gehalten. Der Containerumschlag ist mit einem Anteil von rund 54 Prozent mit steigender Tendenz das wichtigste Gütersegment der duisport-Gruppe.
Der Gesamtgüterumschlag ging dagegen im ersten Halbjahr dieses Jahres mit 32,6 Mio. Tonnen um 6 Prozent zurück. Dies ist ausschließlich auf den Rückgang des Kohleumschlags zurückzuführen. „Dieser Trend wird sich durch weitere Schließung von älteren Kraftwerken im Zuge der Energiewende fortsetzen“, so duisports-Vorstandsvorsitzender Erich Staake.
Dagegen erwartet duisport vor allem im Chinageschäft weiteres Wachstum. So verkehren bereits über 30 Züge wöchentlich zwischen duisport und verschiedenen Destinationen in China. Erst kürzlich hat duisport sich mit der 30-Millionen-Metropole Chongqing, der wichtigsten Logistikdrehscheibe China, darüber verständigt, bei gemeinsamen Projekten im Rahmen von „Belt & Road“ zu kooperieren. Dadurch sollen die Fahrzeiten der Güterzüge von bislang 12-13 Tagen weiter reduziert werden.
Staake: „Der E-Commerce und das Chinageschäft werden zukünftig die relevanten Umsatztreiber sein. Darauf zielt unsere Investitionspolitik in Duisburg, entlang des Seidenstraßenkorridors und in China selbst ab. “
Transport and logistics giant UPS Inc. has been testing a service that allows its delivery drivers to open “smart locks” on apartment buildings and leave packages for residents in the lobby area instead of waiting to be admitted by doormen or residents, the company said today.
The approach has improved delivery efficiency on urban routes in New York City by reducing the number of missed deliveries and by allowing drivers to complete more deliveries on the first attempt, Atlanta-based UPS said. UPS began preliminary tests in Manhattan earlier this year, has now expanded to Brooklyn, and may eventually offer the service in markets throughout the U.S., the company said.
Also known as smart access devices, the electronic lock system helps drivers complete deliveries in the difficult urban environment, Jerome Roberts, UPS vice president of global product innovation, said in a statement. “It can be difficult to securely deliver packages in high-density, multi-family urban residences, especially when people are not at home,” Roberts said. “Smart access devices give us a keyless way to deliver packages to buildings and leave packages safely in lobbies or building package rooms.”
The initiative differs from a smart-lock delivery service launched in 2017 by e-tailer Amazon.com Inc. that allows parcel carriers to enter consumers’ private homes, UPS spokesperson Kyle Peterson said in an email. In contrast to that “Amazon Key” system, UPS’ approach grants a carrier access only to the common areas of multi-unit residences, not into the individual residential units, he said.
Likewise, UPS also offers flexible locations for parcel delivery through its UPS My Choice service, which allows consumers to have packages delivered to UPS Access Point locations such as neighborhood grocery stores, dry cleaners, and The UPS Store sites.
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June volumes at the Port of Los Angeles (POLA) and the Port of Long Beach (POLB) were both solid in advance of the upcoming Peak Season.
POLB handled 752,188 (TEU) Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units in June, which stands as the busiest volume month in its history and marks a 14.2% annual improvement. The previous best month was July 2017, which June 2018 surpassed by 4.4%.
POLB June imports rose 14.5% to 384,095 TEU, with exports up 14.3% at 135,168 TEU. Empty TEU headed up 13.6% to 232,926.
On a year-to-date basis, POLB volumes are up 4.5% annually to 3,952,931 TEU. Imports and exports are up 13.3% and 14.2%, respectively, at 1,992,252 TEU and 813,215 TEU. Empties are up 16.9% to 1,147,463 TEU. Port officials noted that June finished up the best second quarter in its history at 2.1 million TEUs, which is a 10% annual gain, topping the prior high from the second quarter of 2006.
“We are on track to beat our historic pace from 2017,” said Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero in a statement. “The domestic and global economies are good, which is why we’re seeing all of this activity. Certainly the escalating trade tensions have everyone in the industry concerned, but we’re going to continue to provide excellent customer service and fulfill our mission of facilitating commerce.”
And Harbor Commission President Lou Anne Bynum added that she is pleased to see cargo moving efficiently, even as record volumes continue.
“With the Port getting ready to enter the peak season and retailers replenishing their stocks for the holidays, it’s great to see these volumes and the smooth flow of goods,” said Bynum.
POLA handled 723,141 TEU in June, which was down 1.1% annually. But even with the decline, POLA officials said that this marks the second fiscal year period in which the port has topped the 9.1 million TEU mark, with 24 months of “record-breaking cargo movement.”
June imports were up 2.9% annually to 382,964 TEU, and exports were up 1.4% to 147,563 TEU. Empty containers were down 9.7% to 192,613 TEU. Through the first six months of 2018, POLA volumes are down 3.87% annually to 4,309,135 TEU.
“We closed our fiscal year on June 30th with 9,169,779 million TEUs,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka in a statement. “The consistently high container throughput over the past 24 months speaks to our unmatched capabilities, and we are grateful to our terminals, labor force and supply chain partners for their efforts that made this milestone possible. Looking forward, a continued shuffling of alliance services in the San Pedro Bay, coupled with potential impacts from recently imposed tariffs, provide a level of uncertainty and potentially softened trade flows through our port during the second half of 2018.”
Looking ahead to the second half of 2018, including Peak Season, looks to be interesting, said POLA Media Relations Manager Phillip Sanfield.
“On one hand, the economy has been robust and imports have been strong, not only in San Pedro Bay but around the country,” he said. “On the other hand, we have got these tariffs that are in different stages…either looming or some already imposed or retaliatory ones being considered. That provides a level of uncertainty. The global supply chain thrives on certainty. We are cautious about the second half. It really depends on how these tariffs take hold. Gene Seroka has said that in looking at the numbers to date we are estimating at least 15% of port cargo volumes would be exposed to the tariffs that are either in place or are part of the $200 billion that are being discussed in the weeks ahead along with the retaliatory measures. When we say ‘exposed,’ that does not mean they would go away…it means those products going through our docks would be tariffed both for inbound and outbound containers. How that affects cargo, whether retailers or consumers back off and slow orders, or if tariffs are passed along, remains to be seen and is a concern.”
Sanfield said POLA has been stressing that half of U.S. imports go to U.S. manufacturers to be processed, so it does not represent all finished products. And he added that POLA would like to see negotiations at the highest levels to commence immediately with all nations impacted by tariff actions involved.
“We believe negotiation is the best pathway to resolving these issues, and we want a fair and level playing field for U.S. businesses competing in the global economy and want to see negotiations commence to resolve these issues,” he said. “The longer it goes on, the more uncertainty it creates in the marketplace.”
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