Container pooling provider Chep is working with the Delamode Group, which provides logistics and forwarding services in Central and Eastern Europe, for the transport and handling of standard multiple-use containers for automotive suppliers based in Romania.

An average of 60 to 70 truckloads per month are processed at Delamode’s service centre in Sibiu, Romania, for the automotive industry. The service uses small load carriers, which are provided from the Chep network.

"Delamode is now handling transportation within the Chep automotive container pooling network in Romania where the standardised containers are cleaned, serviced and maintained," said Ivana Sretenovic, Chep Automotive's market development director. "Considering the recent co operation established we are expecting a significant increase in the number of manufacturers and suppliers served, helping us achieve our growth targets in this market."

Chep said it will be providing its latest IcoQube automotive container on the service subject to demand from customers.

The IcoQube was launched last week and at the Automotive Logistics Global conference held in Detroit, Michigan on the day of its launch, Chep’s vice-president and general manager, Automotive Americas, Pierre-Luc Mathieu, outlined the advantages the container had.

The IcoQube comes in four sizes and can fill either a 40ft-high or standard 20ft or 40ft sea containers, which he said improves shipping capacity by between 8-10% when compared to conventional disposable packaging.

“First of all it is better use of space within the sea container itself because the IcoQube is designed to optimize the use of space in them,” said Mathieu. “It varies a little by size of container but it is roughly 90% across the product range. The containers can be mixed and matched in configurations that maximize the size but often customers will go with one particular size for a family of parts or one type of unit shipped.”

Mathieu said there were further savings to be made on the reduction of parts damaged because of the robust quality of the IcoQube, which is providing a competitive alternative to the traditional use of corrugate and wood, prevalent in the industry but susceptible to the extreme conditions often experienced on intercontinental shipping.

“It protects the parts much better and therefore you avoid damage to the parts along the supply chain back to the assembly line,” said Mathieu. “Manufacturers don’t want wood or corrugate on the assembly line because it can be dangerous and takes up too much space. So they will repack, which is very inefficient process. These containers go straight to the line.”

Chep handles pick up from the supplier plant and delivery to the assembly line as well as the return of the container, which folds down for additional space saving on return legs. It also provides the totes for internal packaging.

Mathieu pointed out that Chep was already present in all of the automotive manufacturing regions globally and managed 350m assets in 50 countries.