Gefco sets up air bridge for PSA
In another example of how the recent in events in North Africa have had an impact on the automotive industry, Gefco’s Special Transport division has been working with Gefco Tunisia group to create an air bridge to maintain supply to PSA plants in Europe.
Following trouble throughout January, which eventually saw the ousting of president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, disruptions to port activity meant that electric wiring bundles that are made by a local supplier were unable to get to the French carmaker’s production sites, which are normally shipped by sea from the Tunisian port of Radès.
Gefco developed an air bridge on 18th January between Tunisia and the airport at Vatry, 150km east of Paris and by mid-February the company said that its Special Transport division had processed 672 tonnes of goods, amounting to 7,400 pallets sent via 140 return flights.
The establishment of the flights was also useful when, at the beginning of February, Tunisia’s interim government closed all of the country’s ports to car carriers, reportedly because of a corruption probe that targeted local import and export businesses.
At the height of the crisis, seven planes were in operation per day according to the company. Gefco Tunisia is responsible for coordinating collections from suppliers and freight transport, as well as delivery to Tunis airport and loading.
Gefco Special Transport takes over the operation at Vatry, transhipping the goods and transporting them by truck across Europe.
Priority Freight renews contract with JLR
Premium transport specialist Priority Freight has signed an extension to its existing contract with Jaguar Land Rover to provide global time critical supply chain services to Tata-owned company’s three UK-based production sites, together with its aftersales operation.
Priority Freight’s managing director, Neal Williams, said the extension of the contract reflected “the strong and effective working relationship” the company had built with the client over the past year. He went on: “Priority Freight’s dedicated personal handling of each and every shipment provides the required transparency of information essential in today’s time-critical freight environment. This, together with our purpose-built IT system, will serve Jaguar Land Rover well during its forthcoming new model launches.”
FAW supports VW venture with logistics centre
Chinese state-owned vehicle manufacturer FAW Group has announced it will build a new automotive logistics centre at Gongzhuling in the country's Jilin province and near the main rail route. The centre, which is expected to be complete between 2013-2014, will handle vehicles produced by the company’s joint venture with Volkswagen – FAW Volkswagen Automotive – in nearby Changchun. (FAW Volkswagen Automotive has a second factory located in Chengdu, Sichuan Province.)
Planned storage capacity at the new centre is targeted at 100,000 vehicles over 3km2 in the initial phase. A further 2km2 is expected in the second phase.
FAW Volkswagen Automotive makes the Bora IV, Caddy MPV, Golf IV, Magotan (European Passat), Sagitar (European Jetta), Audi A4, and A6L.
The centre will also provide logistics services for one of FAW’s production plants in Fengyue, also in Jilin province, which makes FAW and Toyota branded vehicles. The vehicles produced include the Toyota Land Cruiser and the company has just announced that it is boosting annual production at the plant to 200,000 with the development of a new site. Production there is expected to begin there by August this year.
DB Schenker to consolidate in Frankfurt
Deutsche Bahn’s transport and logistics division, DB Schenker, has confirmed the location of new headquarters that will amalgamate management of the DB Schenker Logistics and DB Schenker Rail Business Units, currently located in Berlin, Mainz and Essen.
From spring 2013 the division will be based centrally at the new Gateway Gardens business park near Frankfurt airport’s Terminal 2. The company announced its decision to move in July last year (read more here)
Frankfurt is a major business location and logistics hub and lies close to the home of Schenker Deutschland in Kelsterbach and DB Schenker Rail Deutschland in Mainz. DB Schenker also operates a cutting-edge air freight hub at Frankfurt Airport's CargoCity South.
"We have found a modern and attractive location for the DB Schenker headquarters.
The state-of-the-art building provides the capacity for around 450 workplaces. The close proximity to the airport is ideal for us as a global logistics player. One united team will then be able to provide powerful new impetus for our international business," explains Dr. Karl-Friedrich Rausch, Member of the DB Mobility Logistics AG Management Board for Transportation and Logistics.
DHL offers degree in logistics for automotive
DHL Supply Chain has developed a three-year foundation degree in logistics for its automotive employees with Birmingham City University in the UK.
The course is run by the university’s Faculty of Technology, Engineering and the Environment and involves eight hours of teaching a week.
Paul Dyer, UK managing director & global sector leader at DHL Automotive, said: “Helping our staff up-skill through a formal qualification programme will directly enhance our workplace skills.”
The company is hoping to extend the course to other DHL departments by next year and also to other logistics firms looking to improve workforce training.
“Ultimately, a highly skilled and motivated workforce will enhance the relationships we have with our customer base,” added Dyer.