Groupe CAT wins Ssangyong contract in UK
Transport and logistics provider Groupe CAT is providing Ssangyong with technical services for vehicle imports to the UK through the port of Bristol at Portbury following a contract signed in February.
Onward distribution to the dealerships in the UK will be handled by CAT's partner Carlson Vehicle Transfer following the collapse of rival Quantum Automotive Services earlier this year, which was to have handled the new imports.
Ssangyong had been absent from the UK market for a couple of years, but following a recent 70% acquisition by Indian engineering conglomerate Mahindra and Mahindra, the brand has returned to the UK with new cars such as the 4 x 4 Korando and Rexton and Rodius MPVs.
CAT UK will take responsibility for the receipt, inspection and technical services preparation of all SsangYong cars arriving at the port, including vehicle preparation, accessory fitment and other special programmes carried out on cars destined for dealers, fleet programmes and direct sales. CAT UK will also be responsible for the customs administration using bonded warehouse facilities and the overall compound management within the port for SsangYong.
Business unit director, Stuart Warren, said: "I am extremely pleased to welcome SsangYong as a new customer. It is once again a testament to our commitment on customer satisfaction in our supply chain operations that we remain one of the leading service providers of choice".
Logistics providers honoured at GM supplier awards
GM has announced the winners of its supplier awards for services provided in 2011. The carmaker recognised 82 of its best global automotive suppliers last week during the 20th annual awards presentation held at the Detroit Institute of the Arts.
"The Supplier of the Year awards winners' partnership, dedication and commitment to consistently perform above expectations played an important role in GM's success in 2011," said Bob Socia, vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain. "In 2012, we will continue to improve supplier relations to achieve a world class supply chain focused on quality, capacity management and total cost."
Logistics providers were among the winners including FedEx, Grimaldi, Hoëgh, Jack Cooper Transport, Jet Express, Korea Express, Mueller-Die lila Logistik, Ryder System and Union Pacific Railroad.
Union Pacific Railroad received the 2011 Supplier of the Year award for Rail Services.
"Earning this award from General Motors highlights the commitment Union Pacific makes to providing value, building and maintaining strong customer relationships and delivering quality products and services," said Linda Brandl, Union Pacific vice president and general manager-Automotive. "We are proud of our track record of earning this award over recent years and look forward to continuing to deliver value to General Motors."
Each year, a team of GM purchasing, engineering, quality, manufacturing and logistics executives determines the winners. Decisions are based on supplier performance in the areas of quality, service, technology and price.
The Corporation of the Year award went to Lear, a supplier of seats and electrical components. Lear has been honoured as a Supplier of the Year 13 times previously.
Audi takes Logistics Sustainability Prize
In other award's news, Audi has been awarded the 2012 Logistics Sustainability Prize in recognition of its "consistent pursuit of sustainability throughout the company's value chain".
The award, presented this year by both the Austrian Logistics Association (BVL-A) and the German Logistics Association (BVL-D) at an event in Vienna, Austria, recognised in particular Audi's supply chain transport concept, which the jury said conserved resources and reduced CO2.
"As the first to use green electricity in the transport of freight, Audi AG is playing a trailblazing role in eco-friendly automotive logistics," the jury panel stated.
In August 2010 the German carmaker became the first to use the "Eco Plus" CO2-free transport solution from DB Schenker. The energy required for railway transport between the production site in Ingolstadt and the loading port in Emden is replaced completely with renewable electricity from Germany.
Dr Michael Hauf, head of Audi Brand Logistics, received the award from Roman Stifter (BVL-A) and Prof. Dr-Ing. Raimund Klinkner (BVL-D).
"Audi avoids about 5,250 tonnes of CO2 annually just on its most important transport route from Upper Bavaria to the North Sea alone," said Dr Hauf at the award ceremony. A full 70% of Audi products from Ingolstadt now reach their destinations by rail, with 36% of these travelling via trains powered by renewable energy, according to the company.
Port of Tyne records vehicle increase
The UK's port of Tyne has announced a record year of growth in 2011 with vehicle imports and exports up a record 667,000. The 20% increase on the previous year was thanks in part to its greater capacity following the first full year of activity at its third car terminal. Volumes handled for both Nissan and VW have reached a record high and led to Tyne being once again the UK's number one car-exporting port.
The new terminal was part of the £100m investment that has been put into the port's infrastructure over the last ten years. This included dredging the river to its deepest ever level of 10 metres and consequently the port can now accommodate 83% of the world's cargo ships.
Demand for components at Nissan, along with rising consumer demand for retail goods, helped drive a 25% increase in the number of containers handled, to a record 71,000 teu.
The port recently welcomed the news that Nissan is investing £125m ($196m) to add a new model to its UK plant Sunderland next year. CEO, Andrew Moffat, said: "This is more welcome news from Nissan and the port of Tyne is delighted to play a part in Nissan's continuing success by ensuring the company can get its cars to market very quickly and efficiently, helping to make it highly competitive across the world."
MOL launches hybrid car carrier
Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) has launched its hybrid car carrier Emerald Ace at the Mitsubishi Heavy Industries' Kobe shipyard in Japan to begin tests on its hybrid power system ahead of delivery, which is expected in June this year.
The vessel, with a capacity for 6,400 passenger vehicles, is designed to generate zero emissions while at berth and will be equipped with a hybrid electric power supply system with lithium-ion batteries that can store some 2.2MWh of electricity.
Conventional power generation systems use diesel-powered generators to supply electricity on board while berthed. However, on the Emerald Ace, electricity will be generated by the solar power generation system while the vessel is under way and stored in the lithium-ion batteries. The diesel-powered generator will be completely shut down when the ship is in berth and the batteries will provide all the electricity it needs, resulting in zero emissions at the pier.
The system was jointly developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Panasonic's Energy Group division and MOL. The vessel was in part funded by a subsidy from Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) in 2009.
The latest technology builds on MOL's ISHIN-I concept for the next-generation of car carriers first announced in September 2009.

Ceva to handle Hankook tyres in Italy

Ceva Logistics has signed a three-year agreement with Hankook Tire Italy providing storage, distribution and reverse logistics for the customer's tyres at its hub in Somaglia, near Lodi, Italy.
Dedicating 6,000-square metres to the new business at Somaglia, Ceva will distribute automobile, light truck and truck tyres across northern Italy and manage a shuttle service to Hankook Tire's main warehouse in Rome, which serves the central and southern areas of Italy.
The company will handle 500,000 pieces across 400 product lines each year, using two incoming and several outgoing vehicles each day to reach dealers and retailers in the north of the country as well as Hankook's site in Rome. It will also manage reverse logistics for Hankook tyres.
Ceva will use its Matrix suite of technologies for end-to-end supply chain management that it said will guarantee close control and visibility of the goods, from point of arrival at the warehouse through to final distribution.