Transportation & Logistics International Volume 9, Issue 3

Page 1

TLIMAGAZINE.COM l Volume 9, Issue 3

Putting the passenger first Autonomous driving The effects that autonomous driving will have on the transportation and logistics industry pg.10

Determined not to let Covid-19 deter it from its plans, South Western Railway is continuing on a path of investment and innovation

Maritime technology The pandemic revealed some major operational gaps and has accelerated technology uptake in shipping pg.18

From the Editor Incorporating Land, Sea & Air and Railway Strategies

Chairman Andrew Schofield Managing Director Joe Woolsgrove Editor Libbie Hammond Assistant Editor ON THE COVER Will Daynes XX.\ XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX Staff Writer Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Alex McDonald xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Production xxxxxManager xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx Fleur Daniels Art Editor David Howard


Advertising Designer Rebecca Side


Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Sales Director Alasdair Gamble xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Operations Director XX.\ XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX Philip Monument Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Operations Manager xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Natalie Griffiths Research Managers XX.\ XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX Jo-Ann Jeffery • Ben Richell Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Rachel Harper • Kieran Shukri xxxx• xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Marissaxxxxx Roberts Basilxxxx Sharpe Editorial Researchers XX.\ XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX Adam Blanch • Mark Cowles Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx Tarjinder Kaur-D’Silva • xxxx Jeff Goldenberg Mark Kafourous • xxxx James Pagexxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx Wendy Russell • Richard Saunders

XX.\ XXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX Advertising Sales Johanna Baileyxxxx • Alex Hartley Xxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx • Dave King • Theresa McDonald xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx • Ibby Mundhir • Reid Lingle Web Sales Subscriptions Corporate Head Office Cringleford Business Centre, 10 Intwood Road, Cringleford, Norwich, NR4 6AU, U.K. Tel: (312) 854-0123 Tel: 044 (0)1603 274130

Hello and welcome to April’s issue of Transportation & Logistics International. From autonomous trucking to hydrogen trains, and from maritime technology to materials handling equipment, this issue covers a range of topics and sectors, with the hope that you find something useful and interesting in its pages. If there is a topic you would like to see covered, do be sure to get touch and let me know!

It was really rewarding to get the latest update

TLIMAGAZINE.COM l Volume 9, Issue 3

on the operations of South Western Railway from its Deputy Director of Customer Experience, Chris Neill this month. With passenger numbers dropping to a fraction of pre-pandemic levels it’s been a huge challenge for the rail sector, but Chris’ insights into how South Western has managed its way through these difficult times, including earning the ‘Customer First’ national standard in customer service, gives a positive story of confidence and highlights the company’s investment plans for the future – a new suburban fleet of Arterio trains is on the agenda for later this year. I am looking forward to seeing them on the tracks!

Putting the passenger first Autonomous driving The effects that autonomous driving will have on the transportation and logistics industry pg.10

Finelight Media 207 E. Ohio Street, Suite 351, Chicago, IL 60611

Determined not to let Covid-19 deter it from its plans, South Western Railway is continuing on a path of investment and innovation

Maritime technology The pandemic revealed some major operational gaps and has accelerated technology uptake in shipping pg.18

T: (312) 854-0123


© 2021 Schofield Publishing Ltd

Libbie Hammond EDITOR

Please note: The opinions expressed by contributors and advertisers within this publication do not necessarily coincide with those of the editor and publisher. Every reasonable effort is made to ensure that the information published is accurate, and correct at time of writing, but no legal responsibility for loss occasioned by the use of such information can be accepted by the publisher. All rights reserved. The contents of the magazine are strictly copyright, the property of Schofield Publishing, and may not be copied, stored in a retrieval system, or reproduced without the prior written permission of the publisher.



Features 4


Beverley Wise of Webfleet Solutions looks at how telematics can help drive efficiencies, manage costs, and help transport businesses


stay compliant in the post-Covid world



Mark Griffin of BOC reports on the potential of hydrogen trains, which could play a significant role in the decarbonization of the UK’s rail network

10 AUTONOMOUS DRIVING Stefan Spendrup of SOTI examines the

Fleet management

phenomena of autonomous trucking, which he believes is the next frontier for the transportation industry

12 MATERIALS HANDLING Glen Hampson of Kubota UK discusses its transition to electric vehicles and explores how


incoming legislation is changing the way the industry thinks about sustainability

14 CUSTOMS Pol Sweeney of Descartes analyses how can a smooth declaration process be achieved in order to reduce issues at the border and prevent further economic loss


Materials handling

Shaun Dixon of Warrens Group highlights how natural gas from renewable sources is making a strong case to help replace petroleum-based power

18 MARITIME TECHNOLOGY Alexander Buchmann of Hanseaticsoft considers


how demand for technology is being driven by the need to support remote working and the health and wellbeing of seafarers

20 NEWS The latest news, announcements and updates from transportation and logistics, across land, sea and air

Alternative fuel 2 TLIMAGAZINE.COM




Jack Cooper


South Western Railway


48 Cryoport


Biffa Waste Services Limited






Driven by


Beverley Wise looks at how telematics can help drive efficiencies, manage costs, and help transport businesses stay compliant in the post-Covid world


t is almost one year since the world

Data analysis from Webfleet Solutions and

was thrust into turmoil and businesses

Geotab showed that activity for the UK

available on the market, including telematics,

across the globe ground to a halt

transport sector remained relatively high

transport companies can ensure their

due to the outbreak of coronavirus.

throughout lockdown, even reaching

processes are more efficient and resources are

Whilst some industries saw operations cease

131 per cent of pre-Covid 19 levels in the run

protected. This will help set them on the path

unceremoniously, others saw activity ramp up,

up to Christmas.

to emerging from the current crisis stronger

not least key service operators in the freight and logistics sector.

The transport sector has not been unscathed, however, with many companies

By taking advantage of the technologies

and more resilient.

still feeling the impact of the economic

Focus on driving efficiencies

and necessary goods, such as food and

turbulence that has ensued. For these, it is

Creating a more efficient freight fleet will

medicine, across the UK, this subsector

not a case of now working harder, but more a

become top priority in the post-Covid world,

provided a critical lifeline during the pandemic.

case of working smarter.

Charged with delivering essential services


Fleet management as time and resources remain strained. Effective management is key to achieving this, and for this to happen, companies need complete fleet transparency. Data from telematics not only offers companies valuable and real-time feedback on their fleet activity, but it can help identify actionable insights. These range from more efficient routing and scheduling, to allow more journeys to be carried out, to highlytargeted vehicle maintenance schedules, to reduce downtime. Using such data to drive efficiencies will help fleets adopt a frictionless and intuitive approach to fleet management, which not only future proofs the company’s fleet, but also allows the business to gain a competitive edge at a critical time in the economic recovery of the country.

establishing fault in accidents and rebuffing

the downloading and analyzing of tachograph

By digitizing processes and adopting

bogus claims. When it comes to fuel, data can

data can be considerable, with almost a

paperless systems, companies can also

be used to help improve routing, cutting back

third of Europe’s transport companies

ensure that face-to-face contact between

on unnecessary mileage, as well reduce idling,

revealing they spend at least 30 minutes

office staff, drivers and customers is kept at

which can limit fuel wastage.

per vehicle each month retrieving the data.

a minimum – all-important in the new era of social distancing.

Keeping a lid on costs

Compliant to the letter

Tachograph integrations with telematics systems can help minimize this potentially

The importance of robust tachograph

laborious administration, while ensuring

reporting cannot be underestimated, with

companies remain legally compliant. These

With attention firmly fixed on the bottom-line

convictions for drivers’ hours violations and

integrations digitize the process and allow

during this challenging period, there may

tachograph offences leading to fines and, in

for the remote downloading of data, helping

be a propensity for businesses to concentrate

some cases, prison sentences.

to maintain productivity and minimize

on swingeing cuts. It is understandable

Concessions were made back at the height


why cost saving is high on the agenda for

of the pandemic, to temporarily relax the

many companies. However, cost optimization

drivers’ hours rules – a necessary means to

A look to the future

need not only be about cuts, but about

an end, as the sector struggled to meet high

The pandemic has thrust companies into the

improving business capabilities. By putting

demand with fewer drivers. But that easing

unknown and many have had to adapt their

digital processes and procedures in place,

has now passed, and the monitoring and

processes to keep up with the pace of change.

transport companies can be proactive in

management of driver hours with tachograph

Whilst the vaccination programme offers

their approach and take preventative, cost

data is once again a legal obligation.

hope, the volatile environment will remain for

reduction measures. Among the main areas of concern

Companies can ill-afford unnecessary

some time to come, and it is swiftly becoming

off-road time for their drivers at this juncture,

clear that data-driven insights are critical to

when it comes to fleet efficiency are

so concentrating efforts on streamlining

survive and thrive in the ‘new normal’.

fuel, maintenance and vehicle downtime.

processes and obtaining this critical

Telematics can facilitate many processes

information with minimum driver downtime is

disruptive technology is not – so a readiness

to tackle these, such as daily digital vehicle


to adapt and adopt is more imperative than

checks, to ensure vehicles are road worthy

The administrative burden that comes with

Though coronavirus is a new phenomenon,

ever. v

and that maintenance schedules are met and never missed. There is also opportunity to reduce costs through improved driver behavior. In-built scoring systems and live driver feedback can help train personnel on the road, resulting in reduced accident rates and claims, lower premiums, and minimized wear and tear.

Beverley Wise is sales director UK and Ireland for Webfleet Solutions. Webfleet Solutions - part of Bridgestone - is one of the world’s leading telematics solution providers, dedicated to fleet management, vehicle telematics and connected car services. Its Software-as-a-Service solution, WEBFLEET, is used by businesses to improve vehicle performance, save fuel, support drivers and increase overall fleet efficiency.

Connected video technology can support in



A chance to


Mark Griffin discusses the role of hydrogen in decarbonizing transport and reveals how hydrogen-fueled trains could provide a welcome boost to the wider green economy


he government is facing unprecedented challenges at the moment, but its commitment to reaching zero emissions by 2050

remains as urgent as ever – and it’s clear that the public thinks so too. Research conducted


Hydrogen trains “The UK missed the boat on wind technology and missed the boat on batteries. We can’t afford to miss the boat on hydrogen

Clean alternatives to diesel – choosing the right technology

Hydrogen-powered vehicles, which offer

80 per cent of the UK population favors a green economic recovery plan. There

Historically, diesel has been favored for

harmful emissions, are increasingly seen

has never been a better time to invest in

heavy transport because of its long range

as one of the best alternatives. As the UK

decarbonizing the UK’s infrastructure – and

and reliability – but it is now recognized

works towards its 2050 zero emissions

one of the biggest opportunities is transport.

as one of the most polluting fossil fuels.

target, it’s clear that hydrogen fuel,

by Climate Assembly UK indicates that nearly

a similar range to diesel and cause no



Below: Mark Griffin at the UNP BOC 40444 Hydrogen fuelling station Aberdeen

combined with renewable electricity, will

disruptive and costly process. For high-

they remove the need to install overhead

play an increasing role in decarbonizing

speed, intensively used lines, the long-term

powerlines, avoid issues with installing

transport. The UK government has set a

efficiency gains can justify the investment.

infrastructure in remote regions, and cause

target to remove diesel trains completely

For rural networks, however, accessibility

much less disruption to the regular operation

by 2040, and the rail industry is clear that

issues can make installing the infrastructure

of lines during deployment.

this will require a rolling programme of

even more challenging. There may also be

electrification throughout the network, as

concerns that overhead lines would spoil the

Proven technology

well as utilizing new technologies including

natural beauty of the countryside. In cases

Hydrogen trains have already been proven

hydrogen fuel cells and batteries. While

where visual impact is of particular concern

commercially viable. In September 2018, two

direct electrification is currently the most

or where electrification infrastructure is

trains, built by French TGV-maker Alstom,

efficient way to decarbonize urban train

particularly difficult and costly to install,

began running a 62-mile route between

lines, hydrogen-fueled trains are better

the advantages of hydrogen-fueled trains

the German towns and cities of Cuxhaven,

suited to rural networks. This is because

really come to the fore. Capable of running

Bremerhaven, Bremervoerde and Buxtehude

installing overhead power lines, which

at speeds of up to 100 mph and travelling for

– replacing the old diesel locomotives. The

is required for electrification, is a long,

up to 600 miles (1000km) without refueling,

new trains are equipped with fuel cells that


Hydrogen trains the government cut back on initial plans for

Breeze trains – an unmissable opportunity for the UK

the electrification of routes in Wales, the

Alstom has already developed a class of

Midlands, the North of England and the Great

hydrogen-fueled trains specifically for the

Western Rail network.

UK market in conjunction with Eversholt Rail

interest in the UK, too – especially since

Hydrogen: a catalyst for change

Ltd. The train, codenamed ‘Breeze’, will be a conversion of existing Class 321 trains, some

The biggest barrier to wider adoption of

of the UK’s most reliable rolling stock, creating

hydrogen transport is the need for refueling

a clean train for the modern age. As the Class

stations – but installing the infrastructure for

321 trains are already electric, the conversion

trains could change that. In fact, trains provide

from an Electric Multiple Unit to a Hydrogen

an ideal opportunity to invest in hydrogen

Multiple Unit can be done relatively easily.

infrastructure for a number of reasons.

The trains can therefore be built quickly and

They have a fixed route that requires regular

with minimal capital expenditure – major

refueling locations, they have reliable and

advantages in a developing market. Alstom

predictable demand that follows a set pattern

has previous experience in this type of

throughout the year, and they require a large

conversion, as demonstrated by its successful

amount of hydrogen – all of which combine

deployment of Coradia iLint in Germany. The

to create predictable demand and help bring

work to convert the trains will take place

down the cost of fuel. Once refueling stations

in Widnes, delivering benefits to the local

are in place, they could be used to refuel

economy through jobs and apprenticeships

lorry and bus fleets, service vehicles, public

and developing UK expertise in a burgeoning

sector vans and cars plus privately-owned

technology sector. While the UK may have

vehicles. By producing more than is needed

lagged behind other countries in developing

for trains, hydrogen refueling stations would

battery technology, it still has the opportunity

then benefit from economies of scale –

to be a world-leader in hydrogen fuel cell

further bringing down the cost for all parties.

technology. As Baroness Brown, vice-chair

This effect has already been demonstrated

of the Committee on Climate Change, notes:

using fleets of hydrogen-fueled buses as

“The UK missed the boat on wind technology

the catalyst. BOC worked with Aberdeen

and missed the boat on batteries. We can’t

City Council to develop and install a tailored,

afford to miss the boat on hydrogen.”

state-of-the-art hydrogen refueling station at Kittybrewster. The facility produces green

The time is right

hydrogen from electrolysis on site, which

It’s clear that hydrogen-fueled trains have

is then stored until it is needed and then

the potential to play a significant role in

pumped into vehicles – much like refueling

decarbonizing the rail network – especially

a petrol or diesel vehicle. The Kittybrewster

in rural areas. But investing in hydrogen

station opened in 2015 and was originally

trains will also open up possibilities for

designed to refuel single deck buses but

much wider decarbonization of transport,

has since been opened up for use by private

put the UK at the forefront of a developing

convert hydrogen to electricity, producing

cars and vans and modified to accommodate

technology and give a much-needed boost to

only water as an emission. In the two years

double deck buses.

the economy. v

since the new hydrogen-fueled trains have been operating, they have proved to be quieter, smoother, more reliable and lowermaintenance than their diesel predecessors. They produce no harmful emissions during operation and have the potential to be fully emissions free if the hydrogen is produced from renewable energy. Following this initial success, two fleets of 14 and 27 trains respectively are due to be in operation in Germany from 2021, replacing regional diesel trains. Further trials are pending in Austria and the Netherlands, and there is growing

Mark Griffin is Hydrogen Market Development Manager for Clean Fuels at BOC. BOC, a Linde company, is leading the UK and Ireland’s drive to enable commercial and private hydrogen transport supported by a UK-wide refueling network. Its clean fuels team designs, builds and operates proven, reliable and scalable refueling station solutions that offer fast and familiar refueling, using hydrogen. It supports local councils and transport operators who are aiming to take immediate action on air pollution and achieve net zero emissions by 2050. In the UK and Ireland BOC has been producing atmospheric gases, including oxygen, nitrogen and argon for over 120 years. Its portfolio today includes thousands of different gases and mixtures, as well as related equipment and services.




frontier Stefan Spendrup reports on the effects autonomous driving will have on the transportation and logistics industry


ig thinking articles on how to

Intelligence (AI.) Once companies have

and benefit from the mainstream acceptance

disrupt industries from retail to

integrated a comprehensive mobility

of autonomous technology. This can be seen

healthcare have been so prolific

strategy within their operations, we find

in areas such as:

in recent years that you would be

them increasingly turning to ‘what’s next’;

• Monitoring, information sharing and

remiss in assuming we have moved forward

solutions that will give them an even greater

exchange across remote devices

from the digital transformation era. Rather, it

advantage against competitors and help

• Management of mobile devices,

is important to think of these transformations

them stay ahead of the field. Machine

rermotely, which can eventually

as the natural extension of a technologically

learning is poised to meet that market

be applied to powering and controlling

driven world, in which companies are


autonomous devices

constantly adapting to meet ever-evolving

The transportation and logistics (T&L)

• Remote support

market demands and customer needs. As

industry is at the forefront of this trend.

the pace of development in technological

An industry that may seem at first to be

capabilities has increased, so too has

traditional and unchanged by technology

companies’ access to technology. With this

over the past half century, has been

1.44 billion tons of goods were shipped via

comes an expectation that companies remain

among the earliest adopters of disruptive

heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) in 2019, which

current with the latest advancements.


is an increase of two per cent when compared

Following the mobile-first era, the next

Autonomous trucking is the next frontier

• Performance data and analysis The numbers make the case. In the UK,

to the year before. Global e-commerce sales

stage in the evolution of digital disruption

for the transportation industry. As larger

are set to reach $5 trillion (£3.8 trillion) by

is the move toward robotics through the

enterprises move away from traditional

2021, driven largely by lowered consumer

Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial

practices, smaller organizations can follow

costs for online shopping and the ease of


Autonomous driving

ordering online for everything from fruit to

When turning our focus onto delivery

furniture. This trend is not likely to decline,

services, we are seeing incredible interest

to ensure that the management and

especially as many are looking to limit in-

in autonomous trucking, which has the

assessment of a connected fleet meets

store interactions in the wake of the Covid-19

potential to deliver faster, more predictable

jurisdictional and federal legislation in

pandemic. It will be difficult for transportation

and more reliable service. These benefits

addition to minimizing cybersecurity risks.

and logistics companies to ignore the

do not negate the valuable role humans

High levels of connectivity often translate

financial benefits of automation alone.

will need to play in overseeing quality

into greater security risks, and companies will

control, providing support and conducting

need to prioritize security to ensure systems

the supply chain and operational practices

data analytics functions to aid in further

are built with cyber resilience capabilities and

already exist. This can be explicitly seen in


can respond quickly in the event of a cyber

Evidential benefits of automation within

Amazon’s famous robot warehouses. These

Prior to implementing full-scale

autonomous trucking, shippers will need

breach. v

IoT-enabled robotic devices can sift through packages faster than humans can. They can work anywhere and under pretty much any condition, which is why they have been employed within the supply chain to speed up delivery and enhance the end-customer experience. The Amazon example indicates that as technology advances, adoption is likely to surge.

Stefan Spendrup is Vice President of Sales Northern and Western Europe at SOTI, the world’s most trusted provider of mobile and IoT management solutions, with more than 17,000 enterprise customers and millions of devices managed worldwide. SOTI’s innovative portfolio of solutions and services provide the tools organizations need to truly mobilize their operations and optimize their mobility investments. SOTI extends secure mobility management to provide an integrated solution to manage and secure all mobile devices and connected peripherals in an organization.



Greener ways

of working

Glen Hampson examines Kubota’s own transition to electric vehicles and explores how incoming legislation is changing the way the industry thinks about sustainability


head of the UN’s Climate

that the government is taking the climate

materials (50 per cent of landfill capacity in

Ambition Summit in December

crisis seriously, what do they mean for the UK

the UK is given over to construction).

2020, the Prime Minister, Boris

construction sector supply chain?

Johnson, announced a raft of

Improving sustainability sector-wide has

But what about the construction machinery that is used on site? As a vital tool in powering

impressive new sustainability targets which

long been a key priority for the construction

the industry, machinery manufacturers have

committed the UK to reducing emissions at

industry, but these new commitments have

an important role to play in helping the wide

the fastest rate of any major economy.

further amplified the need to find greener

sector bolster its sustainability credentials.

ways of working across the next few years.

This has been reflected in recent legislation,

is a 68 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas

Indeed, each stage of the construction cycle

such as London’s Non-Road Mobile Machinery

emissions by the end of the decade, compared

has provable impact on the environment,

(NRMM) act, the first of it’s kind in the UK.

to 1990 levels, alongside achieving net zero

from the manufacture of building products

The NRMM has created a ‘Low Emission

emissions by 2050. While these ambitious

(accounting for some some ten per cent of

Zone’ for mobile machines and transportable

targets are certainly a statement of intent

global energy supply), to disposal of waste

industrial equipment in the Capital, requiring

At the heart of these far-reaching pledges


Materials handling

the near-term, manufacturers are already

some way in dispelling some of the myths

innovating to make the excavator of tomorrow

surrounding greener construction machinery.

more environmentally sound.

Although growing in popularity, there are a

At Kubota, we are proud to sit at the

sustainable construction equipment and

into more sustainable engine technology,

practices which may act as obstacles to wider

recognising the urgency of the climate crisis

take-up. Chief among these is cost, with some

facing us – and the role the construction

operators fearing an alternatively-fuelled

industry has to play in mitigating it. To that

machine is too expensive a purchase to justify.

end, we have made extensive investment

In this instance, it’s important to consider the

into the engines that power our machines,

long-term return on investment that electric

resulting in the prototype of a mini-excavator

or hybrid machines could deliver – not least

which runs on LPG (Liquid Petrol Gas).

in the reduction (or elimination, if it’s just one

The KX019-4 LPG makes it possible for operators to work in emission restricted areas,

all engines with a power rating between 37

number of prevailing misconceptions about

forefront of research and development

vehicle) of the whole-life spend on diesel. Ultimately, for operators, deciding whether

including city centres that apply a diesel-ban,

or not invest in an electric or hybrid machine

while also generating less noise pollution.

will be determined by a number of factors.

Through the use of industrial standard gas

While sustainability will be a concern, it’s key

bottles, the machine can be quickly and easily

drivers like price and productivity that are

refuelled anywhere, with a reserve tank

most likely to factor into the decision making

(gas accumulator) fitted as standard, so the

process, when the time comes to purchase

operator is notified before the gas bottle is

new machinery. With the KX019-4 LPG, and


other machines currently in development,

Alternative fuelling aside, the KX019-4 LPG

we hope to prove that greener machinery is

kW and 560 kW to meet a standard on the

delivers the exact same power and durability

very much a viable solution – and one that can

engine emission ‘stage’. These targets are set

as its diesel equivalent, with variable

deliver real cost, time and efficiency benefits

to get increasingly binding across the next

undercarriage enabling operators to work in

for a business. And with sweeping legislation

two decades, with standards moving to stage

compact environments with less than a

on emissions reduction coming down the

IV in January 2025, stage V in January 2030

metre access.

track, there has never been a better time to

and, from January 2040, only zero emission

Indeed, we hope the KX019-4 LPG goes

think about going green. v

machinery will be allowed to operate in London. As with a number of other transport initiatives, where London goes, other major urban areas in the UK are sure to follow, so we could soon be seeing similar legislation announced in cities up and down the country. And while all-electric/alternatively-fuelled machinery on-site won’t be feasible in

Glen Hampson is Division Manager for Construction at Kubota UK. Kubota is a market leading manufacturer of high performance machinery solutions, producing a diverse product range for the Agricultural, Groundcare and Construction Equipment industries. Based in Thame (Oxfordshire), Kubota UK is a subsidiary of the Kubota Corporation, a global business that is present in more than 110 countries, with revenues of $17 billion.



The need to

streamline Brexit: Introducing certainty for customs clearances. By Pol Sweeney


ith the Brexit transition

required volumes of declarations have also

economy. The government was reportedly

period finally ending on

led to significant wastage of fresh produce,

encouraging UK companies to set up in

31st December 2020

damaging businesses and impacting whole

Europe to avoid trade disruption, which

and Covid protocols


would inflict companies with yet more costs

causing disruption to travel, the logistics

Indeed, some 3PL organizations

and take capital away from the country. And

industry has had a challenging start to 2021.

actually halted deliveries in January to

with fears of a double-dip recession due to

Despite fair warning for businesses, there

the EU or Northern Ireland due to the

repeated lockdowns, it is clear that the UK

have been numerous reports of severely

increase of documentation required,

economy is suffering.

delayed journeys caused by increased

showing the negative potential impact

customs documentation and ‘Brexit red

of Brexit on supply chains. This not

that haven’t and that may be in the midst of

tape’, exacerbated by the need for hauliers

only disrupts logistics operations, but

Brexit-induced disruption, how can a smooth

to provide negative Covid tests to travel. The

is fundamentally damaging to the UK

declaration process be achieved in order


Many have been prepared, but for those

Customs electronically. In other words, the customs

However, performing as many clearance

border is effectively moved to your own

checks as possible inland both speeds up

premises, so customs declarations can be

the process for those vehicles that can

pre-lodged ahead of the goods arriving,

go straight to the ETSF and also unlocks

enabling the site to operate as if it is the

efficiencies for those that will still have

Customs Frontier from a HMRC and Border

to complete clearances at the border,

Force perspective, so long as it is running

benefiting companies that transport

an approved ETSF solution. Additionally, an

different items across multiple categories.

inventory system designed to group goods

Businesses that also import from the

at truck-level could further strengthen the

EU and now have to worry about customs

ETSF set up, meaning once a truck physically

clearances will have to protect their

arrives at your site, the system will trigger

operations from economic loss. In particular,

the clearance of all its consignments so they

Safety and Security filings (S&S) for goods

can be appropriately managed.

moving to Great Britain have been a major

An ETSF system gives visibility and

companies, as customers are required to

so that if they do want to put a hold on

submit the shipping instructions up to

any consignment, the site operator knows

two hours before arrival. This has caused

instantly which goods are on hold awaiting

significant disruption and extra costs to

paperwork or physical inspection – this

the wider supply chain, affecting both

can also be conducted at the operator’s

businesses and consumers. Businesses

site. Thereby ensuring smooth declaration

therefore need to ensure certainty of their

processes and reducing the impact of delays

own clearances, thereby avoiding hold-ups

and hold-ups at the port.

and unlocking efficiencies where possible to

Unlocking efficiencies

reduce the risk of economic damage.

As we have seen with Covid test

The time to act is now

requirements, ports such as Dover have

Now the transition period has ended,

faced severe disruption following the end

businesses need to capitalize on smart

of the Brexit transition period, delaying

solutions to mitigate any more disruption

goods for more than half of UK companies

due to Brexit, and with Covid protocols

trading with the EU. For trucks needing to

impeding the movement of goods, the time

transport goods, any clearances that can

to act is now.

be moved inland will notably benefit supply

Pol Sweeney

cause of disruption for haulage and freight

audit records to HMRC and Border Force

With Brexit causing much uncertainty, a

chains, especially those looking to quickly

streamlined import or export process that

clear and distribute or sell products on.

effectively manages customs clearances can

This is especially relevant for organizations

help to support the already struggling UK

operating with JIT arrival of parts on trucks.

economy. A double-dip recession is a serious

Delays at the border will have a significant

concern and the economy is performing

impact on their ability to do this, leading to

poorly. Covid will continue to be a challenge

loss of produce and resulting in extra costs.

in 2021 but companies have the opportunity

Certain product categories still require

to prepare against further Brexit disruption

to reduce issues at the border and prevent

clearance checks at the border for safety

and introduce some certainty and security

further economic loss?

reasons, such as meat and dairy products.

into their cross-border operations. v

Bringing borders inland The entire customs process can be significantly accelerated by implementing an ETSF (External Temporary Storage Facility) located at your own business’ site, away from the port. Goods arriving into the UK can be moved to your site (e.g. a business’ premises or distribution center), where the customs formalities can be managed

Pol Sweeney is VP Sales and Country Manager UK at Descartes, the global leader in providing on-demand, software-as-a-service solutions focused on improving the productivity, performance and security of logistics-intensive businesses. Customers use its modular, software-as-a-service solutions to route, schedule, track and measure delivery resources; plan, allocate and execute shipments; rate, audit and pay transportation invoices; access global trade data; file customs and security documents for imports and exports; and complete numerous other logistics processes by participating in the world’s largest, collaborative multimodal logistics community.



Cleaner and



Driving towards a Net Zero future. By Shaun Dixon he threat posed by the climate

renewable sources is also making a strong

planet. Unlike fossil fuels where deposits

change emergency is now

case to help replace petroleum-based power

are distributed unevenly, in hard-to-reach

beyond dispute, but there are

and this is only going to accelerate as we

areas, making extraction dangerous and

emerging green technologies

move forward.

expensive, biomethane can be produced

that – if we act to make use of them now –

Biomethane, or renewable natural gas

anywhere in the world using organic matter

can empower us to make a significant change

(RNG), is a potential game-changer as

that is easily available. It also doesn’t harm

to the quality of air we all breathe. The

methane produced by an anaerobic digestion

the environment or pose any major risk of

Government’s green recovery plan, unveiled

(AD) plant fed with waste from the food

pollution or loss of biodiversity.

at the end of 2020, says sales of new fossil-

sector can be refined and injected into the

A policy paper published by the Gas for

fuel-only vehicles will stop by 2030.

gas grid or used to fuel a fleet of vehicles.

Climate consortium suggests that eight per

This will create opportunities for

It’s different from fossil fuels because

alternative fuels. Electric vehicles are

it’s produced from sources that will never

growing in popularity, but natural gas from

run out as long as there is life on the


cent of gas consumed in the EU by 2030 should be biomethane. As early adopters of the latest

Alternative fuel emissions, so decarbonizing the industry is

The acquisition of trucks powered by

essential to meet the UK’s goal of achieving

biomethane gas not only delivers on our

Net Zero by 2050. Some major retailers in the

sustainable vision for dramatically reduced

UK, such as Asda and John Lewis are already

CO2 emissions, but our drivers love them.

on board with biomethane vehicle fueling.

They have been proven to reduce driver

From inception, our efforts have required

fatigue by 50 per cent, due to providing a

research into the best available technology,

quieter and cleaner driver experience. We’ve

fuel comparisons, vehicle expenditure and

now ordered a third IVECO vehicle which will

evaluation of vehicle longevity as a result of

hopefully be ready in June 2021 to replace

low carbon emitting fuels, providing us with

one of our existing diesel vehicles.

a strong rationale to utilize biomethane gas

We’ve also ordered a new Scania G410 CNG

in HGVs - increasing vehicle longevity by

hook-loader, an eight-wheeler which collects

more than four years and reducing carbon

bulk skip collections from our larger blue-chip

emissions by 84 per cent in comparison to

manufacturing companies. With the number

diesel engines.

of miles this kind of vehicle does on a daily

Our biomethane filling station is capable of fueling 200 vehicles per day. It guarantees no losses in transmissions of gas from

basis, it’s going to be a huge environmental saving as well as a commercial one. What has delayed us until recently is the

conversion to filling. The trucks rely on

fact that there hasn’t been an articulated

biomethane gas and generate 84 per cent

vehicle that has been suitable from a payload

less carbon dioxide than diesel as a result.

point of view for our operations. However, we

We designed a robust fleet replacement

believe that Scania and IVECO are bringing

policy over an 18-month period, and

out models this year and we are going to look

committed to achieving a target of seven

into that.

CNG vehicle replacements to replace in four

Whilst our vehicles also cost approximately

years, enabling us to replace all of our diesel

25 per cent more in capital expenditure, our

vehicles by 2025.

operating expenses are approximately 32 per

In 2018, Warrens Group was the first in the UK to deliver a 16-tonne IVECO Eurocargo Natural Power truck, powered by the bio-gas

cent less, giving a payback between one to three years dependent on vehicle mileage. Since the initiative was put in place, we

produced from the truck’s own food waste

have demonstrated YoY growth in waste

collections. Back then this was taking the

processed and energy produced and have

food waste recycling industry in a new

successfully been able to expand our CNG

direction, demonstrating how this alternative

fleet with extension into our digestate

fuel could be used and applied across the

haulers, alongside existing food-waste

supply chain.

collection vehicles.

The two IVECO vehicles we have are small

A tangible, cost-saving benefit which our

in stature but powerful in performance; their

customers and wider society, in particular

trucks have one of the best turning circles

local authorities, can reap rewards from.

for its size and specification, making them

Since increasing the accessibility of our CNG

nimble in tight city streets. Perfect for our

truck innovation and on-site filling station,

existing client base as we collect food waste

we have also seen the rise in large blue-chip

technologies and methods, we recognize that

from pubs, restaurants and supermarkets

food manufacturing companies focusing their

natural gas is the future. In fact, it led us to

across the North East of England, most of

efforts on trial partnerships as part of their

embark on the exploration into innovative

which are positioned within inner cities.

ambitions for circularity and sustainability. v

possibilities available through the use of compressed natural gas (CNG). Clean transportation is one part of the solution when it comes to a more sustainable future, as the transport sector accounts for a third of global energy demand and 14 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. We believe that all company fleets could deliver impact from use of biogas. HGVs account for 4.2 per cent of UK carbon

Shaun Dixon is ABP Accounts Manager at Warrens Group. As a wholly-owned subsidiary of BioCapital LTD, Warrens Group is one of the North East’s pioneers of food waste recycling. The team has helped local authorities, schools and businesses from a wide range of sectors over the years develop a more sustainable approach to waste management. It was also one of the first food waste recycling companies in the UK to power its HGV waste collection vehicles with biogas converted directly from its own food waste customers.



To the


Why the pandemic has accelerated technology uptake in shipping. By Alexander Buchmann


he journey to digitalization for

their businesses into the cloud for the first

many shipping companies has

time, with key drivers being the need to

Maritime’s President said: “developments in

accelerated since the onset of

centralize data and make it accessible to staff

wider society mean there is no going back for

the pandemic. The lockdowns

working at any location, as well to improve

the maritime industries’ digital revolution.”

and restrictions introduced by governments

business processes and drive down costs.

In the report, Ronald Spithout, Inmarsat

to close their offices and move to home

Inmarsat, ‘Digitalisation Uncovered’1 looked

Supporting the health and wellbeing of seafarers


at insights from ship owners and ship

The demand for technology is not only

globally last year, forced many businesses

A recent report from Lloyd’s List and

Businesses with the right technology in

managers in this period of technology

being driven by the need to support

place and access to the cloud could retrieve

transition. They found that the primary

increased remote working – technology is

the data and information they needed to

drivers for digitalization were cost reduction

also supporting the health and wellbeing of

work seamlessly from any location. For

and operational efficiencies, followed by


others, the pandemic has highlighted major

regulatory compliance. The findings also

technology gaps.

pointed to a rapidly increasing need to get

crews, particularly the thousands who have

data off a vessel in real-time, as opposed to

been left stranded at sea for months since

using more manual methods.

Covid-19 hit, has become a major issue.

Since then, we have been approached by many shipping companies wanting to move


The health, wellbeing and safety of

Maritime technology

keep in touch with people can be a lifeline

actioned immediately, ensuring the company

and allowing personal internet access so

is responsive and dynamic and can react to

seafarers can send emails or do video calls is

any situation.

something that more shipping companies are

improving vessel and business performance


and is incredibly powerful for ship managers.

This can enable crews to stay connected

efficiently and analyzed in a structured way

to access mental health support or other

so that businesses can clearly interpret it

groups and organizations. Mental health

to make insight-driven decisions to achieve

support will be increasingly on the agenda

their goals and objectives. Power BI into our cloud-based fleet

will increase.

management system, to offer shipping companies and ship managers enhanced

Covid-19 has prompted a significant increase

insights into their operational data and drive

in the use of video-based connectivity by

a data culture across the organization that

crew, for social and welfare reasons, and it is

will improve business decision making.

highly likely that crew welfare issues will be a top three driver for digital adoption in the

To conclude


The past year has seen technology

The growing need for data analytics

adoption move at pace in the maritime industry. Cloud technology especially is helping to automate many operational tasks

Moving into the cloud is helping with the

such as payroll, scheduling, maintenance

ongoing challenge of getting data off ships

and training; and making it easier for ship

in real-time. It enables sharing of information

managers and crew to work no matter where

and data, with everyone able to access it

they are based.

in one central place no matter where they

With global economic conditions likely

are based. This is transforming business

to be difficult for the foreseeable future,

operations and helping shipping companies

shipping companies will increasingly need to

move away from manual processes.

streamline processes, increase efficiencies

Business critical information such as

The International Maritime Organization

We’ve recently integrated Microsoft’s

internet access is something that we expect The Lloyd’s List report acknowledged that

reported last September that some 400,000

However, it’s important this data is managed

to the outside world, plus make use of apps

for shipping companies and providing good


Having access to data analytics is also

recognizing is a way to tackle mental health

and make cost savings to survive. The cloud

important maritime instructions, crew

offers this opportunity, as well as providing

schedules, payroll data and other key

data and analytics to gain fresh insights

communications can now be shared by

into operations and new ways to improve

teams onshore with the crews and it can be

performance. v

crew members were trapped at sea and continuing to work, as it was impossible for companies to change crews as many governments banned crews from coming ashore amid Covid-19 fears. This is still ongoing for many. It was also reported3 in July last year that the mental health of seafarers was at ‘tipping point’. With no clear end in sight as to when

Hanseaticsoft was founded in 2009 by Alexander Buchmann and is now an established global provider of cloud-based software for the maritime industry. Alexander and his team draw on several years of experience in the software department of a medium-sized shipping company in Hamburg, the third largest container harbor in Europe. In Hanseaticsoft, the idea of a new software concept was finally realized: giving enterprises access to new and efficient technologies by means of intuitive software solutions

the pandemic may be over, the mental health fallout is something shipping companies and wider society will need to address this year. Technology is playing a key supporting role. Having access to the internet to

1- 2 - 3 -



News In Brief Safe transport The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) has implemented 15 transparent pods, called EpiShuttles, to transport infectious patients by air. The EpiShuttle is a single patient transport and isolation system, protecting both medical personnel and patients. It also allows for contagious patient treatment during transport, without the risk of infecting others. Five EpiShuttles will go to RCAF’s primary search and rescue squadrons. The remaining ten devices are stationed at 8 Wing Trenton, ready to launch an evacuation of infectious patients. “We have learnt a lot about emergency preparedness and the crucial role of safe patient transport from the pandemic,” says Ellen Cathrine Andersen, CEO of EpiGuard. “With the EpiShuttle there is no need for disinfecting vehicles. In addition, medical personnel do not need to wear full personal protective equipment while transporting highly contagious patients inside the EpiShuttle.”

Robot pilot XPO Logistics has announced a new technology pilot program in collaboration with Balyo, a specialist developer of robotics for goods handling equipment. XPO is the first logistics company in Europe to test Balyo’s latest robotic reach truck under real-life conditions. The pilot is underway at an XPO distribution center near Blois, France. Pascal Rialland, chief executive officer at Balyo, said: “We’re working closely with XPO to enhance our latest robotic reach technology for their state-of-the-art distribution centers. Our collaboration validates the performance of our autonomous robots in specific applications in order to deliver the greatest benefit to XPO’s operations.” The robotic trucks in the pilot program have an overhead reach of up to 11 meters and are capable of manoeuvring through aisles as narrow as 2.9 meters, while moving 10 to 20 pallets per hour, depending on the application. They operate safely in mixed facility settings, working alongside employees and traditional forklifts.

Accurate tracking exactEarth Ltd has launched exactAIS

Balyo develops its autonomous reach robots in collaboration with Linde Material Handling.

Platinum Plus, the newest member of its industry-leading exactAIS® family of global real-time AIS vessel identification and

Charging up

tracking data services.

Volkswagen and bp intend to work

The addition of Platinum Plus to the

together on extending and speeding

exactAIS family of data services augments

up the deployment of ultra-fast

the company’s real-time satellite AIS

electric vehicle (EV) charging facilities

capability through the addition of

at bp retail sites across the UK,

thousands of coastal and vessel-based

Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

terrestrial AIS receivers to raise exactAIS

Extensive ultra-fast charging

performance to an unprecedented level.

networks are seen by both companies

The additional AIS receivers will provide

as essential to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles. The companies have

significantly enhanced vessel detection in

signed a memorandum of understanding for their collaboration and intend to finalize

ports and regions of high vessel density

agreements in coming months. This would bring together two leading global players

to deliver the ultimate in real-time global

in mobility to develop a network of ultra-fast chargers at convenient and high-

AIS vessel identification and location data

quality locations – bp sites, and Aral sites in Germany. The partnership should give


EV drivers greater confidence in being able to access nearby, reliable, quality

At the core of the exactAIS family of services is exactView RT, the company’s

charging options. The agreement would also make bp the Volkswagen Group’s EV charging partner,

second-generation satellite constellation.

with the integration of bp’s charging network into VW Group vehicles to make

exactView RT consists of 58 payloads

finding and paying for charging fast and simple. The network would also be available

that are hosted onboard the Iridium NEXT

for other EV customers as part of the bp pulse network (Aral pulse in Germany),

constellation of satellites and is capable of

improving access to ultra-fast charging for EV drivers more widely.

delivering AIS data services from any vessel,

Ultra-fast charging units, with a power output greater than 150kW, can charge a

anywhere on the globe, relaying that data

vehicle with the appropriate battery technology for a range of around 160km in just

securely to customers in real-time.

over ten minutes – broadly as fast as refuelling at the pump.


News New collaboration

Super sustainability

The Intermodal

FedEx Corp. home of the world’s largest cargo airline, has revealed

Association of North

its ambitious goal to achieve carbon-neutral operations globally

America (IANA) and the

by 2040. To help reach this goal, FedEx is designating more than

Bureau International

$2bn of initial investment in three key areas: vehicle electrification,

des Containers (BIC)

sustainable energy, and carbon sequestration.

have collaborated

This includes a pledge of $100m to Yale University to help

to standardize the

establish the Yale Center for Natural Carbon Capture, accelerating

identification of

research into methods of carbon sequestration at scale, with

terminals, ramps,

an initial focus on helping to offset greenhouse gas emissions

container yards and depots in the United States.

equivalent to current airline emissions.

Each facility in IANA’s Intermodal Facilities Directory, maintained as

“We have a responsibility to take bold action in addressing climate

part of its administration of the Driver Vehicle Inspection Reporting

challenges,” said Frederick W. Smith, Chairman and CEO, FedEx Corp.

service, now has a structured address, GPS coordinates, a 9-character

“This goal builds on our longstanding commitment to sustainability

BIC Facility Code along with the pre-existing IANA location code

throughout our operations, while at the same time investing in long-

that serves the North American markets today. Adoption of these

term, transformational solutions for FedEx and our entire industry.”

codes is expected to result in smoother communication between

The FedEx commitment builds on a history of sustainable

parties, quicker identification of facilities by third parties such as

practices. Since 2009, the company’s efforts have contributed to

motor carriers and telematics providers, more efficient lessor-lessee

an approximately 40 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions intensity

communications related to on/off-hires and better visibility for BCOs.

across the enterprise while package volume increased 99 per cent

“We believe that the collaboration between BIC and IANA is a step

during that period. Recently, FedEx was ranked first in its industry

in the right direction to achieve the compatibility of location codes in

on JUST Capital’s 2021 list of ‘America’s Most Just Companies’ in the

the North American market,” noted Jon Palmbak, senior vice president,

environment category and first in the travel, transport and logistics

Digital Products & Technology at IANA.

sector of Newsweek’s ‘America’s Most Responsible Companies 2021.’






Patent of the month

Patent application number: WO2020210166

Russell Edson asks: Are hydrofoils set to take off in cargo shipping?


ydrofoils are well known for reducing drag in

assemblies (120). Hydrofoils (122) are connected to the hull by

waterborne vessels, operating like underwater wings,

respective hydrofoil supports (124), which may comprise elongated

which lift the hull out of the water. As the speed of

booms or struts that can move up and down to extend and retract

the vessel increases, so does the lift of the hydrofoil,

from the vessel. In the example, the hull is lifted above the water

potentially raising the hull completely out of the water.

line (115) by the hydrofoils nearest the bow and the stern, and the

This results in increased speed and reduced hull drag, as well as

centrally-positioned hydrofoils are raised out of the water. This is an

improved fuel efficiency, an especially important consideration in the

example configuration of the vessel being foilborne, with the central

world of cargo shipping. With sustainability being a key focal point

hydrofoils raised to reduce the plan area, balancing the lift with the

worldwide, and with emission reductions in the maritime industry

increasing speed of the vessel in the direction of travel (300).

coming under increasing pressure, boosting efficiency has become a priority for the sector. A recently published international patent application by Boundary Layer Technologies, Inc., a start-up company incorporated in California, identifies a number of current challenges regarding hydrofoils which it seeks to address as it adapts them to cargo ships. Firstly, there is the issue presented by travel at low speeds. If the vessel is not being lifted by the foil, i.e. is not in a ‘foilborne’ state, then the hydrofoil becomes an additional drag-inducing surface, alongside the hull.

The document also includes examples in which the hydrofoils may be extended, but only partially. In Figure 1G, they are all partially extended by the same amount. Any one of the hydrofoils may be extended or retracted by any length to fit the needs of lift or speed. By adjusting the extension of the hydrofoils, the supports can be altered to minimize the drag below the water line. Changing the extension of the hydrofoils can also be performed during operation of the vessel to adapt to the desired lift and cruising speed. For any company, and for start-up companies in particular, having commercially-relevant pending IP rights in place can give investors The second challenge surrounds control. Hydrofoil crafts have

greater confidence that the market share targeted by a start-up can be

three key speeds. A take-off speed, at which the foil begins to

protected. This can in turn give them increased certainty of a return on

generate lift; a foilborne speed, where the hull of the craft is entirely

their investment.

raised out of the water; and a cruising speed, at which the weight

Boundary Layer Technologies’ invention allows it to target increases

of the craft is equal to the lift of the hydrofoils. When the vessel is

in speed and efficiency of maritime cargo transport. If that can be

moving faster than the cruising speed, the foils may provide so much

coupled with commercially-relevant IP protection, it could place itself

lift that they themselves are lifted out of the water, causing the

as a leader in the maritime transport sector in the near future. v

lifting force to collapse. This can cause an uncontrolled descent of the craft back into the water. To address this, the aim of the invention is to have a low takeoff speed - to maximize the use of the hydrofoils across the speed range of the vessel - but a high cruise speed to avoid losing control of the vessel’s descent. The patent has sought to build on the basic concept of hydrofoils in a way that reaps the benefits whilst mitigating the challenges. As can be seen from Figure 1E, the patent application refers to a vessel (100) which comprises a hull (110) and a number of hydrofoil

Russell Edson is a partner and patent attorney at European intellectual property firm, Withers & Rogers. He specializes in advising innovators of technologies for use in a variety of transport industry settings – road, rail, air and marine.



Jack Cooper

Moving with the times

Led by trailblazing Executive Chairman Sarah Amico, Jack Cooper is evolving into an automotive transportation and logistics partner for a new decade

Jack Cooper Services: Specialty transportation and logistics provider



t was in 2009, against the backdrop of the Great Recession, that Michael Riggs and his family acquired Jack Cooper. At the time, with the US economy spluttering, the decision seemed curious to some, but Michael, drawing on multiple decades of experience in transportation,

was undeterred. Even as General Motors and Chrysler declared bankruptcy later that same year, Michael, a Harvard Business School graduate, worked tirelessly to save jobs and increase profitability, whilst continuing to pay for employee health insurance despite the financial challenges the company faced.

Michael’s efforts paid off. Jack Cooper, a trusted partner and gold standard brand in the automotive industry since 1928, has not only survived, but thrived. As of 2021, the company has more than 2500 employees and is one of the largest car haul firms in North America.

Founded in Missouri, Jack Cooper remains in the Show-Me State today, where it continues to manage, inspect, process and ship over two million vehicles a year for major assembly plants, manufacturers, and distribution centers in the US, Canada and Mexico. Proud to be certified as a women-

owned business enterprise by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, Jack Cooper is now led by Executive Chairman Sarah Amico, Michael Riggs’ daughter and fellow Harvard MBA graduate. “I am the second generation of the Riggs family to run the business, and the fifth TLIMAGAZINE.COM


Jack Cooper

Below: Executive Chairman Sarah Amico


generation overall, if you include Jack Cooper, his son, and his grandson,” Sarah explains. “The Coopers did an incredible job taking care of their people and in many ways, it wasn’t just blood relatives that felt like they were in the family business, it was everybody who worked there. “Jack Cooper set the tone for this organization and we’ve tried to build upon his legacy,” Sarah continues. “Ninety-three years later, we still have a relationship with General Motors, one of our largest customers, which I think is pretty extraordinary considering the transience of client relationships in this industry and everything we’ve gone through. Still, this doesn’t mean we can’t add our own take on things. For example, as a WBENC certified Women-owned Business Enterprise, we play an active role in helping our customers in their push to support supplier diversity.” One of only two Teamster carriers left in the industry, Jack Cooper is a proud union employer. However, like many union employers, the company was presented with a major challenge in 2019 as the multiemployer pension crisis came to a head in the United States. With the crisis threatening catastrophe for working families

across the US, and in particular, Teamsters and drivers, Jack Cooper was forced to undertake substantial restructuring efforts. “It was a painful process, but it was a very successful one,” Sarah reports. “In less than three months, we saved nearly 3000 jobs; no-one had their wages cut, nobody lost their fully paid health insurance and nobody lost their union seniority. What I am most proud of is that we were able to work through it all in partnership with the pension and investors, bringing everyone together with a laser focus on preserving jobs and ensuring Jack Cooper is healthy for the next 90 years. “Of course, as a family, we gave up our equity as part of the restructuring process,” Sarah adds, “but we were proud to put our money where our mouth is. When we say we care for our people like family, we mean it. Our HR team has recently put in a new company motto - ‘Our people are our strength’ - so we didn’t see it so much as giving something up, but more investing in what makes Jack Cooper great. “We are still a very proud Teamster business. They have the best drivers in any part of the trucking industry anywhere. These drivers load and unload vehicles in

Jack Cooper

all sorts of conditions, cities, towns and roadsides, and they do it with extraordinary skill. They are real rock stars.” One unexpected consequence of Jack Cooper’s restructuring was that the company became far better prepared to face the Covid-19 pandemic. Hardened by the multiemployer pension crisis and associated difficulties of 2019, the company’s workforce met the pandemic with grit, determination and uncommon resilience – and Jack Cooper has come out unscathed, if not stronger, on the other side. “We’ve proved that we can get through anything, so I think we can now look forward to some good times ahead,” Sarah predicts. “In the immediate term, from a customer perspective, we will be looking to clear any inventory backlog our customers need by executing the delivery of vehicles


and making sure that the inventory levels dealers need can be secured quickly, efficiently and safely. “On the union side of things, we want to keep strengthening our great partnership,” Sarah asserts. “If you think about how many families have suffered in the last year, especially in a country like the United States where there is no significant social safety net, I am very proud that our Teamster drivers still make a great wage, and that they have a pension and company-funded health insurance. In my opinion, our Teamster drivers have been frontline workers throughout the pandemic. They are the heroes of the Jack Cooper story.” In the months and years ahead, Jack Cooper will continue to invest in its people, as well as in the equipment, technologies and benefits that help employees perform

to the best of their abilities. It will do so as a family business once again; the Riggs family regained majority ownership in the firm last Spring as the company worked to survive Covid-19-related industry shutdowns. In an industry where turnover can sometimes be as high as 100 per cent annually, Jack Cooper recorded just two per cent turnover in the fourth quarter of 2020 – a statistic that can be directly attributed to the company’s commitment to financially supporting its workforce and its future. According to Sarah, one of her most pressing upcoming challenges will be to take Jack Cooper and, if possible, the entire car haul industry into the green energy economy. Alongside the possible introduction of electric vehicles and charging stations, Sarah believes it is important to discuss the positive impact that electrification can have

conscious data storage. All in all, it’s an exciting time to be at Jack Cooper. In the 13 years I’ve been around the industry, this is the most hopeful and forward-looking I’ve ever felt.” Looking forward is, incidentally, nothing new at Jack Cooper. Ever since Michael Riggs purchased the firm in 2009, it has been guided by the Riggs family’s belief in a longterm approach to business – a philosophy epitomized by ‘The Zoe Strategy’. “Zoe is my niece,” Sarah remarks. “She will turn 12 in the summer. When Zoe is in the workforce in ten to 15 years’ time, I want to make sure Jack Cooper is healthy, thriving, diversified, technologically advanced, environmentally responsible and with a leadership team that values its people and fantastic union workforce. That is the Zoe Strategy, and that is why we must keep promoting our values-driven social justice initiatives and making sure our diversity and inclusion program remains robust. If we do that right, Jack Cooper will be around for another century or more.” A partner and supplier to Ford and Toyota for over 40 years, and to General Motors

for more than double that time, Jack Cooper has proven that it will always provide great service to its customers whatever the world throws its way. Though technology, processes and equipment continue to change as the decades roll by, the common denominator behind the company’s success remains the same – great people. “We’ve had investors and partners that have been with us through thick and thin throughout the last 13 years. They believed that Jack Cooper jobs were not only worth saving, but that our people are worth investing in,” Sarah says. “For that, I am incredibly grateful. “At Jack Cooper, we are very proud of how we support our union, we are proud to pay for everyone’s health insurance, we were proud to put a paid leave policy in place, and we were proud to take Covid seriously. That’s the legacy I want to leave behind. We want to build a company that recruits the best and brightest talent and operates in a way that doesn’t damage the one thing we have to live on – our planet. It’s an ambitious vision, but we have an extraordinary group of people to help us make it a reality.”

on the wider environment and communities in which we live and work. Sarah can also envision a future where Jack Cooper is the first trucking company in America to fully eliminate its carbon footprint – and she’s already working to make that happen. “I want Jack Cooper to be as green a company as possible,” Sarah emphasizes. “I love Mary Barra’s vision for a zero emission, zero accidents future, and we want to be a part of that. We’ve ordered dozens of new trucks in the last year and we are working on a very ambitious, environmentally responsible re-fleeting project. We want to put our drivers in cabs with the best leading-edge technology in heavy trucking, and we are also looking at everything from solar panel installations to how we can use our company’s new paperless initiative to provide more secure, more environmentallyTLIMAGAZINE.COM


South Western Railway

Putting the passenger first

By continuing to invest in its network, its fleet, and its people, South Western Railway is working to usher in a new era of post-pandemic rail travel in 2021 and beyond

South Western Railway Services: Train operating company



tarted in August 2017, the South Western Railway (SWR) franchise is a joint venture between FirstGroup – which operates a number of franchises in the UK, such as neighbouring operator Great Western Railway – and MTR. The latter operates the Elizabeth Line on behalf of Transport for London, along with other lines across the world. “Our operation is quite a significant undertaking, operating out of the UK’s busiest station, London Waterloo,” explains South Western Railway’s Deputy Director of Customer Experience, Chris Neill. “Our network covers a large geographical region including South West London, parts of the South East of England, including Surrey and Hampshire, as well as the South West including Wiltshire, Dorset and parts of Devon and Somerset. We also operate

Island Line on the Isle of Wight, an eight-mile railway on the east of the Island. As part of our franchise agreement, we’re set to deliver a number of exciting projects this year, including a new fleet for the suburban part of our network, and modern trains for Island Line.” As with all rail franchises – and indeed all transport operators – SWR’s recent activities have been influenced no end by the Covid-19 pandemic. “As a public transport operator previously serving hundreds of thousands of commuters every day, it isn’t surprising that the pandemic has had a huge impact on our business,” Chris continues. “Lockdowns have resulted in our passenger numbers dropping to a fraction of pre-pandemic levels, and whilst restrictions have eased on occasion over the past year, numbers have remained relatively low. Despite this, our teams across the

business are continuing to work tirelessly to keep the railway going, ensuring we run a safe and reliable service for those who need it, such as key workers. “In terms of our service, we have been running a reduced timetable since March 2020, and with fewer people travelling and trains running, our timetable has given us more resilience when things do go wrong. In each period since April last year, our PPM (trains arriving at their final destination within five minutes of their booked time having stopped at all booked stations), has been consistently above 90 per cent. We are keen to ensure that this improvement in performance can be sustained in the long-term, and have been working hard to achieve this, including through transforming our Control Room operation by placing additional personnel in the control

center with access to new, improved systems, and working closely with our partners at Network Rail to reduce speed restrictions across the network.” This year – 2021 – certainly got off to a positive start for SWR, with the franchise being awarded a coveted ‘Putting the Customer First’ accreditation by Customer First UK. “In January 2021, SWR was indeed recognized for achieving the ‘Customer First’ national standard in customer service, underpinning the company’s determination to improve the passenger experience in readiness for more people travelling on the railway after lockdown,” Chris declares. “Every aspect of SWR’s customer facing departments underwent 18 months of rigorous examination before being awarded the ‘Putting the Customer First’ accreditation through Customer First UK. SWR is now part of

select group of train companies to undertake the assessment and receive this prestigious accreditation. “Over 250 colleagues were surveyed or interviewed by Customer First assessors, who visited the train company’s operations facilities in Basingstoke and conducted numerous secret shopper visits at some of our busiest stations. The award recognizes how SWR is dedicated to delivering for its customers at every stage of the journey – from booking tickets on the website and app to interactions with front line colleagues.” Central to the ongoing success of the organization are SWR’s people. “For service providers such as ourselves, it is the people within the business – at whatever level – who ultimately determine the perception of it amongst both users of said service, but also TLIMAGAZINE.COM


South Western Railway

non-users,” Chris correctly points out, before going on to note past, and forthcoming plans to facilitate ongoing employee development within the franchise. “At the beginning of the SWR franchise in 2017, we began our Momentum change program. In short, the program, which was intended to continue


throughout the seven-year franchise, was designed to transform the awareness of all employees. The program reinforced that the actions and behaviors of colleagues, irrespective of role, would impact customer experience. Working with training specialists, Train4Change, we worked through multiple

phases of this program, but unfortunately had to stop all development activity following the onset of Covid-19. We are currently in discussion with the Department for Transport regarding proposals for the development of our people during the new contract period, which is expected to commence in mid-2021.” In preparation for the return of higher passenger volumes, SWR has also continued to make important and significant investment in its services, fleet and infrastructure in recent times. “SWR is committed to providing a railway service that is accessible to all, and our Assisted Boarding Points initiative is central to this commitment,” Chris reveals. “This industryfirst scheme will enable customers who require assistance to contact us at any time of the day through phone, WhatsApp or a Help Point to let us know that they will be travelling on our network. The customer will then be directed to one of our assistance points and the guard working on the service in question will also be made aware, helping to ensure a smooth, efficient and stress-free boarding experience. Every platform on our network will eventually have an assistance point, which will not only enhance customer experience, but also help to reduce delays.” This year will also usher in the launch of 90 new Arterio trains onto the SWR network. “The Arterios are a flagship project for our business, representing a £1 billion investment in our suburban routes,” Chris says. “The 90 new trains – made up of 750 new carriages – will begin to be introduced onto our network later this year and will transform journeys from Day One. They will improve the onboard experience for our customers by providing enhanced passenger information, at-seat charging points, air conditioning and an accessible toilet on every train. Not only that, but they will improve performance on this busy part of our network with faster acceleration and braking, and more rapid door opening times. Additionally, using just one fleet of trains on these routes will make it easier for our teams to operate, helping to reduce delays for our customers. “On top of investing in our fleet,” Chris adds, “we are also continuing to invest in our infrastructure and technology to help us to deliver a modern railway. All 187 of our managed stations now have Wi-Fi available for our customers. Work is also continuing at our new depot at Feltham, which will be used to stable our new Arterio trains as well as providing facilities for our train crew and cleaning staff. “We’ve also worked closely with Network

Rail to deliver a number of projects including the upgrade of Feltham and Syon Lane stations. Working in partnership with the Department for Transport, Solent Local Enterprise Partnership and the Isle of Wight Council, we are also currently working on the transformation of Island Line, which will not just deliver modern trains, but also upgraded infrastructure and improved accessibility.” SWR is committed to playing an important role in combatting climate change by running a railway that is sustainable, as well as safe and efficient. To do this, it is investing in innovative technologies, and has been working with rolling stock company, Porterbrook, and emissions specialist, Eminox, to trial technology designed to reduce emissions from its diesel fleet. “This technology has been proven to reduce harmful emissions from mid-life diesel trains by over 90 per cent,” Chris states. “We have also set ourselves the target of reducing our total energy use in buildings by 41 per cent by 2024, and we’re making good progress on this. We have recently completed the installation of over 16,000 LED light fittings at 165 of our stations, which has contributed to a 21 per cent reduction in energy consumption. Overall, the reduction of energy this project has delivered is the equivalent of charging over 450 million smartphones!” In 2021, the customer focus of SWR is twofold. Firstly, and as a priority, it knows that it must reassure its customers that its trains and stations are consistently clean, and that the railway is a safe way to travel. Secondly, SWR is committed to a continual improvement in customer service. “We know that our reputation as a company depends on us delivering consistently excellent customer service,” Chris declares. “Good customer service 80 or 90 per cent of the time simply isn’t good enough, and as such we will not be resting on our laurels. During 2020, we developed our ‘Delivering Great Journeys’ service standards, created for each customer facing role in a level of detail that can provide no confusion with regard what good looks like. These service standards are being rolled out this year, and will be used to influence our recruitment, training and development of future and existing colleagues.” Looking beyond 2021, Chris knows that there are huge opportunities ahead for SWR. “A new suburban fleet of Arterio trains will provide the springboard to deliver a significant step change in service on the SWR network, while investment in digital technology will allow us to leverage improvements in customer information on the Arterio fleet, as well as

our existing fleets. Investment in our stations is equally as critical, and innovative and mutually beneficial ways to do this will produce considerable improvements for our customers. “We also know that, as an industry, we must simplify our ticket pricing and provide solutions to meet customers’ needs. The five-day

commute is now widely regarded as a thing of the past, so providing a flexible ticketing option for commuters must be a high priority for the industry to address. We are working closely with the industry and Department for Transport to bring these options to the market as soon as possible.”




The king of


Disciplined, entrepreneurial and dedicated, Cryoport is the premier provider of temperaturecontrolled supply chain solutions in a number of rapidly evolving life science markets

Cryoport Services: Temperature-controlled supply chain solutions



t Cryoport, every employee understands that a life can be on the line with every shipment the company manages. As a pioneering global provider of temperaturecontrolled logistics and life science solutions, the firm is regularly presented with high stakes challenges in the bio-pharma, animal health and human reproductive markets, but thanks to a culture of discipline, initiative, hard work and ownership, Cryoport boasts a 99.8 per cent success rate since 2019. A highly entrepreneurial venture from the start, Cryoport was founded by six doctors on a mission to bring their reusable cryogenic dewar to the temperature sensitive packaging and transport market in place of dry ice. As the company’s technology evolved, Cryoport soon developed a dry vapor shipper powered

by environmentally-friendly vapor of liquid nitrogen, and, in the process, took a step closer to its modern product offering. The last decade at Cryoport has been defined by the leadership of Jerrell W. Shelton, President and CEO of Cryoport Inc., and Dr. Mark Sawicki, President and CEO of Cryoport Systems and Chief Scientific Officer of Cryoport Inc. Together, the pair have rebooted the organization, adding, among other initiatives, a focus on cell and gene therapies – an industry where cryogenic logistics is a must have. Thomas Heinzen, Vice President of Corporate Development at Cryoport Inc, explains more: “The only way to suspend cells used in cell and gene therapies is with cryogenic technologies and temperatures below -150 Celsius. Our cryogenic shippers last over ten days at around -196 Celsius and generally

“We are at the beginning of profound changes in the delivery of healthcare globally and companies like Cryoport will be valuable partners as new regulatory requirements come in, emerging markets become centers of growth, and cost pressures mount. Innovative and industry compliant temperaturemanaged supply chains will be essential for the continued advancement of the life sciences

you can get anywhere around the world in that time. “Over the last few years, as we’ve grown into the scale of supporting cell and gene therapies globally, we’ve really started to perfect the logistics and outsource solution side of things,” Thomas continues. “Five years ago, when I joined the company, we supported about 40 trials and finished 2015 with around $4 million in revenue. Today, we are supporting 528 clinical trials, seven commercial therapies, and have grown to $48 million in revenue for just the fourth quarter of 2020. “We were the first provider of temperaturecontrolled supply chain solutions for both Gilead/Kite’s and Novartis’ commercial regenerative therapies, and those relationships continue today. Our client list is now a ‘who’s who’ of the sector.”

As Thomas suggests, Cryoport has experienced rapid growth over the last halfdecade and revenue has, in total, jumped from $3.5 million to $78 million and rising. Operating from 30 locations and serving more than 100 countries, the company is a recognized specialist in cold and cryo-frozen logistics with an ever-evolving variety of solutions to suit specific client requirements and needs. At the center of Cryoport’s supply chain offering are Cryoport Express Shippers, which include advanced packaging and come equipped with a SmartPak Condition Monitoring System that allows the company to communicate with each shipper in transit. As part of the company’s strong innovation pipeline, Cryoport will launch this year the Cryosphere - a revolutionary self-orienting Express Shipper that will be the most advanced

storage and shipping container on the market. Acting as a vital support system for Cryoport’s day-to-day operations is the company’s cloud-based informatics platform, the Cryoportal. Capable of communicating with Cryoport’s SmartPak Condition Monitoring Systems, the Cryoportal also handles order entry, tracks Cryoport’s global inventories and performs predictive analysis on every shipment. This analysis enables Cryoport to intervene and correct undesirable conditions that might be affecting a shipment or endangering its safe passage. “Our focus on risk management has helped us rise to the top,” Mark says. “The fact that we have a consolidated platform that integrates packaging, logistics and informatics - and that is all centered around optimizing and managing risk in an uncontrolled space - is a real TLIMAGAZINE.COM


Cryoport differentiator for us. We were instrumental in crafting the recently released ISO21973:2020 standard for biotechnology, so we are leading the way in traceability, processes and equipment associated with storing and moving cells from point A to point B. “Compatible with FedEx, UPS, DHL and carriers the world over, the real-time nature of our cloud-based platform means we are the only company out there with the ability to fully monitor, uniquely trace and, if necessary, save cell or gene therapy shipments,” Thomas adds. “When you are talking about $1 million gene therapy with someone’s life on the line, that is a really big deal!” To further build its competencies, Cryoport has made two large acquisitions in 2020. The first of these, CRYOPDP, brought the company the third largest healthcare-dedicated specialty courier in the world and immediately expanded Cryoport’s global network. The second purchase was MVE Biological Solutions, which is the world’s largest manufacturer of cryogenic equipment for the life sciences industry. The acquisition of MVE not only enabled Cryoport to vertically integrate, it also secured future inventory expansion and brings Cryoport into the bio-storage equipment market on a global basis. Thomas believes that, in order for Cryoport to continue thriving on the world stage, expansion was inevitable. “We do a lot of forecasting at Cryoport and we knew we couldn’t build out our global network fast enough organically,” he states. “We don’t need facilities on every street corner like Starbucks, but we do need to be near where our customers manufacture their therapies around the world. If you created a heat map of where cell and gene manufacturing takes place, and then overlay our network on top of it, it’s pretty close to being complete. We still have some more room for geographic expansion, but we have really fast forwarded as a business thanks to the CRYOPDP and MVE moves.” With the life sciences industry advancing at speed, the sector’s relationships with supply chain partners like Cryoport are growing increasingly important. As clients search for new ways to drive efficiency and growth, Cryoport’s expertise, global reach and technical capabilities are more sought after than ever. “There is no other industry that can play the crucial role life sciences can in improving peoples’ lives and restoring health across the globe,” Jerrell declares. “We are at the beginning of profound changes in the delivery of healthcare globally and companies like Cryoport will be valuable partners as new


regulatory requirements come in, emerging markets become centers of growth, and cost pressures mount. Innovative and industry compliant temperature-managed supply chains will be essential for the continued advancement of the life sciences. “The sciences behind breakthrough treatments, globalization, information technology, and innovation mean that the importance of the supply chain has never been stronger. Supply chains are being required to plough new ground as they are extended to new global markets, which means meeting a broader array of demanding regulations and providing more exacting temperature management.” In 2021, Cryoport will continue to consolidate and integrate its recent acquisitions, as well as introduce new technologies designed to better manage risk and deliver more reliable data. Allogeneic therapies will also be a key area of interest. “About 30 per cent of the clinical trials we support today are allogeneic, which involves taking blood from a healthy donor and using it to create a batch of therapies,” Mark notes.

“Once that batch is created, it is our intention to ship it into our network around the world. All our facilities will have storage capabilities in the future, meaning they can hold commercial grade customer products.” A believer in the power of relationships, both internal and external to the business, Cryoport looks forward to supporting evolving markets in the years ahead, as well as its employees, suppliers, customers and communities in which it works. In line with this dedication to the human side of business, the firm launched a new Environmental, Social and Governance Program (ESG) in February 2021, reinforcing its positive approach towards corporate responsibility. “We want to make sure we are open about ESG and the work we are doing to be efficient, ethically responsible and sustainable,” Thomas reports. “The biggest example for us is on the human reproductive side of things, where we ship eggs, embryos and sperm as part of the IVF cycle helping parents have children. Our 99.8 per cent success rate on shipments means that the intended parents have a better shot of a successful IVF procedure. Our ESG

program is just getting started and I think it’s important to recognize it as a living policy. We will continue to build it out and refine it over time, but getting it out there is a good first step.” On a mission to support life and health on earth through its advanced technologies, devoted personnel and comprehensive supply chain solutions, Cryoport will continue to forge rewarding partnerships and deliver groundbreaking results. As the company’s motto implies, in an unpredictable world, Cryoport is built upon science, logistics and certainty. “The advancement of the life sciences industry, and more specifically cell and gene therapy, is the key driver for our growth at Cryoport and the key to the health of all humanity,” Jerrell asserts. “Scientists around the globe are getting close to finding cures for diseases that have never had any suitable treatments before. It is rewarding and exciting to know that Cryoport is playing such a significant role by enabling the storage and logistics behind these therapies to hopeful patients and their families all over the world.”



Biffa Waste Services Limited

Badge of


After successfully negotiating the Covid-19 outbreak and launching a brand-new sustainability strategy, Biffa Waste Services finished 2020 on a high as it was awarded Earned Recognition status by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency

Biffa Waste Services Limited Services: Collection, landfill, recycling and special waste services



s the UK’s leading sustainable waste management company, Biffa has built its reputation on remaining at the forefront of development and innovation in the industry. In December 2020, the firm celebrated its latest standout achievement when it was awarded

earned recognition status by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). On receiving the accreditation, Biffa joined BT, John Lewis, Stagecoach and over 90 other UK businesses that have passed the stringent pre-validation checks and procedural audits that make up the earned recognition program’s

exacting assessment process. Due to the high standard of Biffa’s results, the organization saw all eight of its operator licenses enter the scheme, which continues to reward the most compliant, high-performing operators, drivers and vehicles on Britain’s roads. Phil Breen is the DVSA’s Earned Recognition

National Account Manager and, as such, is uniquely positioned to discuss the merits of the scheme for both the governing body and its operators. Speaking to Transportation & Logistics International, Phil is able to provide some context on the extent of Biffa’s achievement.

“For years the DVSA was asked, ‘What does good like? What is a good operator?’,” he begins. “We have always had the standard for the operator license conditions, but that is just the starting point. It is the minimum expectation for an operator. “Some operators in the industry want to do TLIMAGAZINE.COM


Biffa Waste Services Limited

Above, left to right: Bristol depot, Marc Fishwick – Transport Manager, Alan Lewis – Workshop Manager, Mark Forster – Group Fleet Compliance Manager, Dawn Wood – Depot Manager (Bristol), Andrew Stadden - Driver better. They want to be more than basic. They want to be the best at what they do. That is where earned recognition comes in. It means you have earned the right to be recognized by the DVSA and the Department for Transport as an exemplary operator within the industry. “The flipside of the program is that it frees up DVSA resources,” Phil adds, “meaning we can focus our targets at the roadside to the serially and seriously non-compliant - the rogues within our industry that we either want to see become more compliant or removed. We are trying to raise the standards in every part of the industry, from operators to auditors to IT suppliers, and we are the only government scheme of our kind. It is free to join too. We are not here to make profit but to improve and ensure safety and compliance.” For Biffa, the earned recognition process started in June 2019 when Phil introduced the company to the scheme. Mark Forster, Head of Fleet Compliance at Biffa, has been present on every step of the company’s journey – from pre-validation checks to safety and compliance audits to the announcement of the program’s

partnership with the DVSA on the process,” he explains. “You are walked through the scheme step-by-step and I never had any concerns about contacting Phil or his colleagues. “We now have a really open relationship with the DVSA and their earned recognition team. Once you look at the requirements for the standard you realize that it is just common sense. There are some really good suggestions that are easy to enact, but they are always happy to have an honest discussion and guide you if anything does go wrong. It feels as if we are all learning from each other.” The flexibility of the scheme has also impressed Mark. The DVSA allows organizations to develop their own procedures, providing they meet the governing body’s criteria. Where company’s fall short, the earned recognition team looks to work collaboratively with firms to help correct and enhance their processes.

successful completion in late 2020. According to Mark, the support the company has received from the DVSA has been invaluable. “As soon as you apply for earned recognition it becomes apparent that you are working in

It brings everybody into the fold - not just technicians and drivers, but transport managers, the compliance team, fleet admin and everybody at Biffa involved in managing this fleet of vehicles. I guess that is why it


“Ultimately, I think people need to understand that it is a great accreditation, but it is not an easy one to get,” Mark asserts. “Everybody had to play their part.

has become such a badge of honor for us.” Alongside the obvious pride that stems from such a momentous achievement, earned recognition comes with a wide variety of additional benefits. Though the scheme has been running for only two years, some of the earliest earned recognition accredited operators are already reporting efficiency savings of more than £10,000. One operator in particular, Phil reveals, has made a saving of £33,000 since commencing the program. “Earned recognition employs very modern approaches,” Phil continues. “As part of the scheme, alongside self-monitoring, state of the art IT systems are used to look at both vehicle and driver standards. The digital reports we draw from these systems are useful to both the operator and the earned recognition team, ensuring the operator is meeting certain KPI standards, which leads to efficiency savings felt through fewer stops, fewer costs, and more safe vehicles on the road.” All earned recognition operators are listed on the website and the DVSA regularly promotes these businesses on social media, as well as providing exclusive content workshops delivered by creators of key legislation. Earned recognition also allows operators to bid for one of the DVSA’s commercial modules, such

as HS2. Mark suggests that the scheme has further boosted Biffa’s profile when it comes to bidding for work. “It’s really helping us stand out amongst our colleagues,” he states. “This is the ultimate standard in our industry. Since we have become accredited, we will be using it to our advantage when tenders come our way by saying, ‘Look, the DVSA has designated us as an exemplary operator.’ By no means a stagnant or static scheme, earned recognition will continue to grow in the coming months and years as the DVSA looks to introduce more commercial modules and tailor the program towards contemporary topics, such as counter-terrorism and low emissions. According to Phil, earned recognition is merely at its ‘starting point’ and operators can expect to see it expand across other parts of the sector to ensure the whole transport industry is working together to make every journey safer. Adam Cooper, Group Fleet Director at Biffa, believes this is good news for all involved. “The key thing for any large business is that if you have earned recognition, you are going

Kudos Interiors Kudos Interiors have been providing its customers with innovative ideas for improving workspaces and turning bespoke design concepts for refurbishments or relocation of office spaces into reality since 1996. Kudos Interiors have numerous high-profile clients who consider this high performing company to be their preferred supplier, one of which is Biffa. Kudos Interiors handles all of Biffa’s office fit-outs and refurbishments. The most recent works carried out for Biffa included the refurbishment of the Executive Area of its High Wycombe headquarters, and the Covid-19 secure prepping of its sites; including those in Sheffield, Aylesbury and Alton with Perspex screens, one-way signage and safe layouts of employee seating in the offices. Kudos also plays a key role in meeting Biffa’s environmentally friendly policies, for example replacing existing lighting with LED systems. Biffa, and all of Kudos Interiors clients, benefit from the cost effective, hands-on, personal service that the company takes great pride in providing. Every detail of a project is handled professionally and personally by experienced project managers with the upmost care and attention with quality outcomes delivered on time and to the agreed budget.



Biffa Waste Services Limited

Handling Change Biffa work in challenging environments and to support this have had a managed manual handling programme provided by Handling Change since 2013. The results are impressive and something both parties are proud of - a sustained reduction of over 70% in handling related injuries, adding significant value to Biffa’s Health and Safety strategy. Handling Change offer bespoke and tailored manual handling support across all areas of the business; from risk assessments, to on-the-job training, supporting materials and even a monitoring tool. Whilst the results are important, so too is the consistently positive feedback around the unique style of delivery and engagement.


to win more work,” he declares. “It is a gold star from the governing body that says, ‘You can trust these people, they are safe and they are reliable.’ It is a great opportunity for the industry as a whole to learn together and build together.

“We are particularly excited about the future of earned recognition because there is so much opportunity. When it comes to topics like expansion into the alternative fuel space and the sharing of knowledge, earned recognition is ripe for that in terms of the challenge the country faces and how we can do it collectively, rather than in pockets. As a company, we are well aware of the clean air zones and what we need to do, but actually I think the whole sector needs to be sharing best practices. The DVSA and earned recognition could lead the way on that.” As Adam implies, Biffa is a passionate advocate for sustainability. Though earned recognition may have been the firm’s key achievement of the latter half of 2020, the first half of the year was headlined by the release of ‘Responsible, Resourceful’ – Biffa’s innovative new sustainability strategy. Based around three pillars – building a circular economy, tackling climate change, and supporting its people and communities – Responsible, Resourceful sets ambitious targets that Biffa hopes to achieve by 2030. Among them is an overarching objective for the business to reduce its carbon emissions by 50 per cent across the next decade. “We have already reduced our emissions by 65 per cent since 2002, so we are now working on the next step of a long journey,” claims the company’s External Affairs & Sustainability Manager, Simon Rutledge. “One of the key parts of this goal is the decarbonization of our fleet. We aim to stop buying fossil fuel roadside collection vehicles by 2030 and want to phase them all out by 2040. We are committed to doing the same thing for fossil fuel powered small vans by 2028.”

Working in partnership with Manchester City Council to electrify its fleet, Biffa recently trialed electric roadside collection vehicles in the area. The trial was a success and consequently, Biffa will be rolling out 27 of these pioneering electric vehicles in 2021. “The significant thing for me in this space is that we now have viable, proven technologies that can be used to help decarbonize large vehicle fleets,” Adam proclaims. “In terms of roadside collection vehicles, major manufacturers like Electra, Dennis Eagle, Scania and Volvo now have alternatively powered products available for purchase at scale. We are talking mainly about electric vehicles, but hydrogen and compressed natural gas are increasingly becoming an option as well, so we are looking to harness these new capabilities and expand beyond Manchester, across our business, on a use case basis. “At Biffa, we are signed up to the Westminster Commission for Road Air Quality, but the waste sector as a whole is highly collaborative on this front. Just recently, Daimler announced the phasing out of its diesel internal combustion engines, while JCB and Caterpillar continue to produce non-diesel variants of their equipment. It’s really exciting. Major manufacturers in our sector are being forced to accelerate their thinking.” Looking back, Biffa’s accomplishments in 2020 are all the more impressive considering the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic and the accompanying impact felt by businesses worldwide. Resilient and well-organized, the firm continued to provide its key services throughout the crisis, seamlessly meeting the challenges presented by an increase in municipal and medical waste.

While Biffa’s agility has helped it respond to the difficulties of the last 12 months, the company is also proud to have retained its core focus on the health, safety and wellbeing of its workforce and the communities in which it operates. Thanks

to a careful balancing of priorities and the hard work of its collection teams – who continue to win praise from councilors and local authorities – Biffa enters 2021 as an exemplary operator with a clear path towards future success.




A bright future ahead for Tuffnells

Tuffnells Services: Mixed freight distribution


“These are exciting times at Tuffnells, and we couldn’t ask for a more loyal, dedicated and hardworking team to help push the company forward”

The UK’s leading IDW carrier, Tuffnells is transforming its team, technology and processes in preparation for a new era of success





uffnells is embarking on the next phase of its transformative plan, readying the company for a new era of success. In May 2020, the company returned to private ownership after a loss-making period as part of Connect Group PLC. In the short time since, the company has already recorded a cumulative profit and now has a strong foundation on which to grow and increase profitability. Speaking to Transportation and Logistics International, the company’s Executive Chairman and CEO, Michael Holt, shared his thoughts. “Since May, the progress made has been outstanding. We now have the right focus and plan in place to drive the business forward. We have rebuilt our internal systems, teams and structures, and laid the foundation for the future by introducing long-term and clear objectives for growth and sustainability. In just six months, I’m


delighted to see the business already returning to profit.” In October, Tuffnells embarked on a new financial relationship with Leumi ABL, providing the company with stability for the future and the financial independence needed for its plan of investment. This includes the recent introduction of two new Customer Experience Contact Centres, which guarantee a UK-based customer service, and which has already landed positively with customers. With a long-term investment programme in place for IT and infrastructure technology, the company is also working through its plan of fleet upgrades, introducing more efficient Euro 7 compliant vehicles, better route optimisation and improved telematics. One important factor in Tuffnells’ recent success has been in bringing in the right experience back to the business. With new

Countrywide Freight Group

hires in key positions, Tuffnells has also seen the welcome return of its trusted leadership team, with Ian Bland back as Operations Director, Chris Tresadern as Commercial Director, and Ian Brewer as Finance Director. “I am thrilled to have Ian, Chris and Ian back on board,” says Michael. “This team has

a proven record of success at Tuffnells, and all three are instrumental in our plans to turn the business around. They have already played a vital role in helping get the business back to turning a profit.” Bringing the best out of Tuffnells’ workforce is a key part of the company’s

Countrywide Freight Group are proud to have been working closely with Tuffnells for over a decade as their strategically placed delivery partner for North & Mid Wales. Countrywide Freight Group were established in 1976 from humble beginnings as a delivery service within Northern Ireland, specifically for the textile trade, however we now operate from ten depots in the UK Mainland and Northern Ireland. Our growth has sustained throughout our history organically and with key acquisitions plus the introduction of new service offerings. Over the years, we have built our reputation as ‘the carriers’ carrier’ by becoming the delivery partner of choice for some of the most well-known UK & Global parcel companies, Tuffnells being one of them. We have achieved this through our high levels of service, honesty, trustworthiness, impartiality and never compromising our customers’ confidentiality. We also offer bespoke delivery solutions for various other industries including time critical automotive and retail deliveries. We, as Countrywide Freight Group, take great pride in providing a high standard of service and customer satisfaction




long-term plan, which includes investment in new training processes and apprenticeships. A culture and engagement program called ‘Green Shoots’ is in place, and the introduction of easy-to-access academic qualifications and internal certificated courses are set to take the initiative further. “Not only do we want to grow the business, but we also want to provide our team members with opportunities for growth and development,” Michael adds. “In addition to providing a great service for our customers, it’s also essential we make Tuffnells a great place to work for all of our team members.” Tuffnells’ niche is in the transport of items of irregular dimension and weight (IDW), handling parcels and freight that other


carriers can’t - such as tyres, automotive parts, bicycles, long lengths and even Christmas trees. Like many carriers, the impact of Covid-19 has required the company to adapt, most notably in its customer profile where it has moved from serving predominantly B2B clients to a more even mix of B2B and B2C customers. The pandemic has also highlighted the importance of the industry in the transport of essential supplies. In October, Tuffnells and members of their team were recognized for going above and beyond in the delivery of life-saving equipment to the London Nightingale Hospital, picking up three awards at the Institute of Couriers’ National Courier Awards. The awards also recognized Michael by awarding him with the IoC’s highly esteemed ‘Services to Industry’ accolade, highlighting his important contribution to the sector throughout a long career. Michael says “These awards are a fitting tribute to our fantastic team, who have done so much to help deliver vital supplies during a tricky year.” Now on the right track, Tuffnells is ready for the challenges of 2021. “We have made great progress this year,” says Michael. “There are still challenges ahead, but we have a great plan. These are exciting times at Tuffnells, and we couldn’t ask for a more loyal, dedicated and hardworking team to help push the company forward.” TLIMAGAZINE.COM


Challenge Group

Rising to the challenge 52 TLIMAGAZINE.COM

With operational hubs around the world supporting its tailormade, door-to-door service, Challenge Group is on a mission to be recognized as the best boutique air cargo handling operation on the planet

Challenge Group Services: Non-standard cargo solutions


eaders of this publication and its forerunner Land, Sea and Air, will probably have heard of the name CAL Cargo Airlines. An allcargo airline, whose team of pilots have a wealth of experience flying to every corner of the globe, CAL Cargo Airlines is a member of the Challenge Group. Other entities within the Group include, Challenge Airlines BE, Challenge Air-Cargo, Challenge Logistics, its leasing arm Challenge Aviation, and Challenge Handling. The latter – formally LACHS (Liege Air Cargo Handling Services) – was formed in 1996, whereas all of the other members have been built in the last four years. Today, the Challenge Group consists of four B747-400Fs, two of which are the high performance B747-400ERFs, operated

by two airlines – CAL Cargo Airlines and Challenge Airlines BE. The Group’s major hub is in Liege, Belgium, from which the Group operates flights to several major airports across North America and China. Meanwhile, Tel-Aviv serves as a secondary hub, connecting China and Europe. “Challenge Group holds a unique position in the market as it is focused on dealing with the most complicated of cargo,” states its Chairman and Owner, Offer Gilboa. “For example, as part of a complex cool chain, our Challenge Handling entity possesses CEIV certification, as well as its own large refrigeration facility, while other unique qualities that we can call upon include our ability to analyze market needs and adapt in time to provide a tailor-made service to the unique requirements of our customers. That particular capability was put to the test during 2020, with demand and the operational environment around us changing on a daily basis.” In building its network of businesses, Challenge Group has created a dynamic mix of synergies among its members, allowing it to offer its customers comprehensive, doorto-door solutions for complicated air cargo. “The years from 2018 to 2020 were those in which the vision of Challenge Group truly materialized,” Offer continues. “While we enjoyed the excellent market that 2018 gave us – which allowed us the opportunity to acquire two new aircraft – we kept investing in Group growth during 2019, which was the most difficult year in the last decade for the air cargo business. Across this 12-month period, a lot was invested in order to prepare Challenge Group, and its infrastructure and tools, for growth, with one of the biggest investments being in the refurbishment of a 747-400-ERF, acquired a year earlier. At the same time, Challenge Handling expanded its operations at Liege Airport into a second line warehouse. It now plans to open a second one on the north side of the airport, which will almost triple the business in terms of size, making it one of Europe’s largest handling facilities!” Challenge Group started 2020 prepared for growth, although the extent of the growth was – at the time – not yet perceived. As one can now imagine, the emergence of Covid-19 presented many operational challenges, together with very high demand for the Group’s services, especially in the verticals market, such as pharma products. “We were perfectly positioned, with a presence in China, to support at first the relief flights to China, and later the major TLIMAGAZINE.COM


Challenge Group

airlift of medical supplies from China to the rest of the world,” Offer explains. “Furthermore, the Group’s wise implementation of our home base at Liege Airport (which is located in the heart of Europe, open 24/7, and is dedicated to cargo in the main), with Challenge Handling further expanding its facilities there, has seen us become a key anchor for maintaining the logistic supply of Covid-19 materials into Europe, and serving as platform for European citizens during this difficult period,” Offer adds. “Additionally, we are now seeing an increased demand for our expertise in the handling and moving the vaccines, to and from end users across all regions of the globe.” As the Challenge Group prides itself on being recognized as the best boutique air cargo group – specializing in special cargo and offering bespoke services to its customers – having the right team, made up from the right people, is essential. “During the pandemic, our employees proved they can do the impossible, under extreme conditions,” Offer enthuses. “The Group has always maintained close links between its management and workforce, and taking care of its people has long been a key part of its culture. In the last year, the Group has continuously strived to maintain a safe environment for its people to work. Also,


Road Air Cargo Europe

with the help of today’s digital tools, it is able to keep its business moving forward, even without being able to meet other people or groups physically.” Keeping with this trend, the Challenge Group is now in the midst of moving to more digital platforms, offering its customers realtime access to booking and quoting services, as well as advanced tracking services.

“Over the past several years, the Group has also established strong partnerships with businesses such as Cainiao, and others,” Offer says. “Liege Airport’s geographical location, its growth and expansion potential, its great infrastructure, and its access to key destinations in Europe, has brought Challenge Airlines and Handling to the attention of many shippers and forwarders

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Challenge Group around the globe, and whether it be through e-commerce, mail or parcels services, they all have large volume redistribution requirements.” The Group also continues to make headway in increasing its levels of connectivity around the world. As recently as October 2020, it launched a new service connecting Liege Airport and Tel-Aviv with Hong Kong. This strategic move will help to further strengthen the Group’s Tel-Aviv hub in particular, not only eastbound but also westbound, and is just another example of its ability to follow market demand and meet the rapidly changing needs of both consumers and the commodities that they require. Looking to the future, the Challenge Group has designs on achieving further growth. The only bottleneck to this at present is aircraft, and the Group is currently evaluating several aircraft types for prospective use. “The Challenge Group’s expansion, in both network and ground facilities, is fueled by our customers pushing


us to grow and take advantage of our vision and potential, which in turn will facilitate their own future needs and growth,” Offer details. Indeed, CAL Cargo was once described as the best kept secret in the market, and as other members of the Challenge Group have been created and grown so too

have the opportunities for its customers to make use of the benefits of their shared synergies. “The word about the Challenge Group is now out there, and we look forward to all members and customers of it enjoying the benefits of working with the best boutique air cargo group in the world,” Offer concludes.

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