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DUBAI: February 24, 2018. Dubai Trade, the facilitation subsidiary of DP World, has announced the six category winners of its 2019 E-Services Excellence Award (ESEA) - recognising companies that adopt smart services in trade, shipping and logistics.

DP World UAE Region managing director Mohammed Al Muallem commented: “It is encouraging to see the growing adoption of electronic transactions by the UAE’s trading community and these awards also help us understand emerging customer demands and trends.”

ESEA winnersThe winners (pictured) were nominated based on the number of mobile and online transactions conducted on the Dubai Trade Portal that integrates DP World, UAE Region Ports, Jafza and Dubai Customs.

The award for M-Token Service was won by Bin Abed General Land Transport; Danzas AEI Emirates LLC won the Free Zone Services award; Clearance Services - Customs Broker went to Freightworks (Dubai Express LLC); Clearance Services – Trader was awarded to Landmark Group; Payment Services went to Naffco Shipping and Forwarding; and the Electronic Services Award to Shipping Agent for General Cargo Services was won by The Kanoo Group.

“The world is evolving at a pace never seen before and it’s important businesses keep abreast of change to ensure their sustainability and maintain international competitiveness,” continued Al Muallem. “The expansion of e-services and the rapid adoption of smart transactions underlines Dubai’s success as a global leader in maritime trade and logistics driven by technology.”

Dubai Exports, the export promotion agency of the Department of Economic Development, also presented four awards to Dubai- based manufacturers and re-exporters: Jindal Saw Gulf LLC won New Exporter of the Year; Joseph Advertisers was Innovative Exporter of the Year; Praramb Agri Trading DMCC was awarded Emerging Re-Exporter of the Year; and ETG Agro Industries LLC was Champion Re-Exporter of the Year.

Dubai Trade acting chief operating officer Hussain Alblooshi, added: “Each of the winners represents the future of the logistics industry and the benefits of new technology adoption, boosting efficiency and helping improve national trade flows. Dubai Trade seeks to fulfil its role as an enabler that provides innovators the platforms they need to realise their potential.”

FRANKFURT/MIAMI: February 12, 2019. Lufthansa Cargo has carried 900 tonnes of long-stemmed roses from Quito and Bogota to Frankfurt, and from Nairobi to Frankfurt over a three-week period this year – equivalent to 10 million individual stems. The roses were imported over a period of three weeks.

Lufthansa Cargo flowers 2019To ensure the flowers arrived in ideal condition, the airline used its ‘Fresh/td’ perishables service to maintain an ambient temperature between two and four degrees Celsius along the logistics supply chain from grower to retailer.

The roses were harvested several times a day from flower farms in Africa and South America and immediately placed in water and cooled. After sorting, packing, airport delivery and aircraft loading, the multiple shipments spent a few hours in transit at Frankfurt before final delivery to cities throughout Germany as well as destinations in Austria and Switzerland.

Meanwhile, UPS has been busy optimizing its network between North and South America to deliver an estimated 89 million flowers in 48 hours via its Miami hub to retailers in the US and Canada. The airline said it added 50 extra flights during the peak period to handle over 517,000 bloom-filled boxes.

“The need for a reliable logistics partner is crucial for us to spread joy and love to our customers around the globe,” commented Galo Sanchez, executive vice president of The Elite Flower, Colombia’s largest privately-owned flower farm. “Because we know millions of sweethearts are counting on us, every year, we depend on UPS’s operational expertise to ensure that love blooms on Valentine’s Day.”

LONDON: November 15, 2018. A report from Inmarsat, the UK provider of mobile satellite communications, says supply chain stakeholders can reduce their environmental impact by adopting Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technology.

IIoTThe research says 46 percent of respondents are using IoT solutions to improve resource efficiency and monitor water, soil and air quality while 67 percent say they are achieving environmental sustainability improvements.

Inmarsat notes supply chain organisations have had success in implementing smart electrical grids, smart street lighting, environmental monitoring and fuel efficiency monitoring and telemetry.

However the company adds that satellite communications are key to achieving the benefits of IIoT as many stakeholders operate in remote regions or at sea, where terrestrial networks are not available.

Commenting on the findings, Inmarsat Enterprise president Paul Gudonis said: “The global supply supply chain is faced with a multitude of challenges, tasked with reducing its impact on the environment and adhering to stricter government regulations, while accommodating the needs of a growing population. Our research shows that organisations are adopting IIoT to help them achieve these goals, and that many are succeeding in this aim.”

Inmarsat operates mobile satellite connectivity for Industrial IoT deployment across the global supply chain, enabling end-to-end transparency across the production, extraction, manufacture and multi-modal transportation of goods.

Report: IIoT on Land and at Sea

BONN: November 12, 2018. Columbia Capital, a Washington, DC-based venture capital group, is to invest US$21 million in DHL’s cloud-based supply chain risk management solution Resilience 360.

According to DHL the platform alerts shippers about risks to their global supply chain in “almost” real time. As a result, businesses can visualize their supply chains end-to-end, use machine learning capabilities to detect early warnings of incidents that can disrupt their supply chain, and allow customers to preemptively respond and minimize business interruption.

DHL trucks“Resilience360 is a key part of DHL’s value proposition. By bringing in Columbia Capital, we have the opportunity to significantly enhance its capabilities, particularly in data analytics and accelerate the growth of the platform and provide an even better service offering to our customers,” said Katja Busch, DHL’s Chief Commercial Officer.

“Supply chain risk management is more important than ever to our customers and aiding global supply chains to be more resilient is a critical part of our business. The investment reflects our commitment to helping the industry manage risks beyond the DHL network,” she continued.

“Supply chain technology and analytics have huge potential to increase supply chain efficiency and create value,” added John Siegel, a partner at Columbia Capital. “We spent significant time meeting with many companies that are addressing this opportunity and believe that Resilience360 has very unique capabilities and potential.”

In a related risk context, DHL Freight has launched a driver recruitment initiative to counter a labour shortage in the logistics sector.

“Our industry is currently being driven by an ever- increasing demand for transport, not least because of the continued strong growth in e- commerce. While we have sufficient loading capacity, we are noticing an increasingly urgent shortage of drivers,” explained DHL Freight CEO Uwe Brinks. “We have now adopted a far-sighted approach to addressing this problem with our driver recruitment initiative, which is aimed at ensuring that we can continue to provide our customers with the certainty and service they have come to expect from us.”

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MIAMI: August 29, 2018. Ethiopian Airlines has begun Africa’s first freighter service to Miami with a twice-weekly roundtrip B777-200 freighter operation from Addis Ababa via Spain and Colombia.

MIA AIRPORT“We are very pleased to see Zaragoza, Miami, and Bogota joining our fast expanding freighter network in the Americas. With the new service, Ethiopian will carry Inditex high-end textile products from Zaragoza to the Americas,” commented airline CEO Tewolde GebreMariam.

Inditex, the world’s largest fashion group, refreshes its physical and online collections twice a week and can deliver to 7,200 stores in 93 markets worldwide within 48 hours “and often sooner” via 10 Spanish logistics centres.

“We applaud Ethiopian Airlines for bringing us MIA’s first cargo destination in Africa,” added Miami-Dade Aviation director Lester Sola. “Our unrivaled position as the international cargo capital of the US and the gateway of the Americas continues to attract new service from key markets in Europe, the Middle East, and now, one of the busiest air cargo hubs in Africa.”

Ethiopian Cargo adds to a growing network of all-cargo flights linking Miami to Latin America and the Caribbean. Last year TACA Peru began four flights a week from five South American cities; Mexico-based Aeronaves TSM commenced 10 flights from Cancun; and Qatar Airways launched two weekly cargo flights from Doha, with intermediate stops in Luxembourg, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires, Quito, and Liege. This year Southern Air began a weekly all-cargo service from Hong Kong via Anchorage; Turkish Cargo launched a second weekly frequency from Istanbul; and Polar Air Cargo launched a direct freighter service to Tokyo.

In a related announcement, Royal Air Maroc (RAM) is to begin a three times a week B787-8 service from Casablanca to Miami on April 03 next year. It will be MIA’s first passenger link with Africa since 2000 and Florida’s only nonstop service to the continent.

LOS ANGELES: October 30, 2018. WAYV, an automated on-demand supply chain logistics platform servicing California’s growing cannabis industry, has received US$5 million in seed funding led by Craft Ventures, the investment fund created by serial entrepreneur David Sacks.

WAVVWAYV enables licensed cannabis companies to access a network of hundreds of licensed brands and receive next day delivery to anywhere in California. The company says the investment will help it strengthen its supply chain platform and hire critical resources across key functions.

“Navigating the antiquated cannabis supply chain as a retailer, grower, manufacturer or distributor is costly and cumbersome. That’s why we created WAYV. Our platform catapults the cannabis industry forward with modern technology and a compliant marketplace - already in use by hundreds of brands and distributors,” said Keith McCarty, CEO and co-founder. “WAYV’s marketplace streamlines fulfillment, integrates compliance with payment terms, and provides real-time product tracking. Now, retailers can build long term, trusted relationships with brands.”

Launched earlier this year, WAYV technology has reportedly been used to facilitate “thousands of orders and delivery for myriad top brands to the majority of California retailers”, as the newly regulated California cannabis market sees the benefit of an intelligent fulfillment and logistics platform built for the industry.

"As California moves to a regulated and licensed system, there is a long tail of retailers and brands in the industry that need to be connected. The WAYV marketplace provides this critical bridge," said Sacks.

Founded in 2017 by technology executive Keith McCarty and headquartered in Los Angeles, the WAYV platform supports the BtB cannabis business process covering transport, sales, and payment through a one-stop website that integrates regulatory and compliance checks.

LONDON: July 04, 2018. According to management consulting company Oliver Wyman (OW), the red-tape costs from any new arrangement with the EU Customs Union will outweigh the benefits gained from negotiating free trade deals that cover imports from non-EU countries.

Oliver Wyman BREXITIn a new report, co-author and OW Partner Lisa Quest says the annual direct costs of new tariffs and non-tariff barriers will be around £27 billion for UK firms, equivalent to 1.5 percent Gross Value-Added (GVA), and around £31 billion for EU27 firms, equivalent to 0.4 percent GVA).

The report also estimates 70 percent of the extra costs arising from trade barriers will be incurred by just five UK business sectors: financial services; automotive; agriculture, food & drink; consumer goods; and chemicals & plastics.

Quest also answers the question what would happen if a new Customs agreement was broadly the same as the current EU Customs Union, saying it would likely reduce the UK red tape cost increase to £17 billion (1.0 percent of GVA) and the EU27 impact to £14 billion (0.2 percent of GVA).

Meanwhile with the new UK Customs Declaration Service (CDS) set to begin replacing the current system next month, HM Revenue and Customs, the British International Freight Association and software supplier Agency Sector Management (ASM), have been conducting seminars throughout Britain to inform supply chain stakeholders of the process changes they can expect after Britain leaves the European Union.

“CDS is an essential upgrade to cope with an expected increase in declarations post-Brexit, which will benefit the freight forwarding sector as it continues to modernise,” said ASM chairman Peter MacSwiney.

“Alignment with the Union Customs Code (UCC) will enable the trade facilitations required by UK business today - with Brexit taking place next year the changes are well timed for a UK logistics sector in a stage of significant transition,” he added.

ASM’s ‘Sequoia’ software supports Air & Ocean Import and Export; External Temporary Storage Facilities; Customs Freight Simplified Procedures; Customs Warehousing; New Computerised Transit System; Designated Export Place; Air WayBills; Forwarding Documentation; Job Costing and Invoicing; Worksheets and a Web Services Application Programme Interface.

NEW YORK, NY: October 09, 2018. Loadsmart, a digital freight broker, has raised an additional US$21.6 million in series A funding led by Maersk Growth, Connor Capital SB and Chromo Invest for a total of US$34.7 million to date.

Loadsmart co founders Ricardo Salgado and Felipe CapellaThe company leverages artificial intelligence (AI) to automate US truckload bookings, either manually or automated via an API, providing instant prices and guaranteed capacity to shippers as machine-learning algorithms match loads with available trucks.

“Our strategy has been to focus exclusively on product development and technology. Now we are ready to grow,” declared co-founder and CEO Ricardo Salgado. ”This round of investment will enable us to increase the business exponentially while maintaining high-service levels. It will also enable us to scale without losing the edge on innovation and technology.”

“We see huge potential with loadsmart,” commented Sune Stilling, head of Maersk Growth, the launchpad for new ventures at A.P. Moller – Maersk. “Forward integrations between ocean shipping and over-the-road services can create incredible synergies and eventually provide a full service to shippers,” he added.

Loadsmart co-founder and Chief Product Officer Felipe Capella explained it was first and foremost a data company. “With the highest ratio of engineers in the industry, we were the first to introduce truckload instant pricing and booking, and the market’s first server-to-server autonomous truckload booking via our API. This tech-first approach has allowed us to set in place a fully scalable and automated distribution model.”

(Pictured: loadsmart co-founders Ricardo Salgado and Felipe Capella.)

SINGAPORE: April 25, 2018. The Baltic Exchange has agreed to audit the Freightos Index of weekly spot rates covering 12 ocean trade lanes and republish as the Freightos Baltic Index.

The index reflects spot rates for 40-foot containers based on 12 to 18 million price points and complements a new ‘FBX Global Container Index’ (FBX) – a weighted average of the 12 underlying route indexes.

The Baltic ExchangeThe FBX represents ocean freight prices, including all ocean surcharges, and is published weekly every Sunday based on the previous week’s rolling price of Freight All Kind (FAK) spot tariffs between carriers, freight forwarders and high-volume shippers. Freightos says 50 to 70 million price points are collected every month.

The Baltic Exchange already provides daily assessments for the dry bulk, tanker and gas freight markets that are used to settle Forward Freight Agreements (FFAs), while the Freightos index is used by over 1,000 logistics providers and 3,000 shippers for market intelligence and bookings.

“Baltic Exchange benchmarks are already widely used as settlement mechanisms in the derivatives and physical markets for billions of dollars-worth of bulk freight transactions,” explained CEO Mark Jackson. “By offering our robust auditing methodology to the FBX, we hope to provide the framework for the container shipping industry to develop sophisticated risk management tools,” he continued.

The organisation has a 274-year history of providing services to the bulk shipping industry and financial services, and is backed by the Singapore Exchange, one of the world’s major derivative exchanges.

Freightos.com is the digital platform for international freight that allows shippers to instantly compare and book freight quotes for air, ocean and truck movements, while managing shipments online.

FRANKFURT: September 19, 2018. Lufthansa Cargo says it has become the first, and currently only, airline to handle a dangerous goods declaration electronically with a pharma shipment from Abbott Diagnostics on a flight from Frankfurt to Mexico City.

INFR 8The airline says it has made a "significant" contribution to the establishment of the global eDGD standard as part of IATA’s e-freight initiative via close collaboration with the launch of a six-month pilot of the 'INFR8' eDGD platform (pictured).

“We are pleased that the eDGD has celebrated its global launch with Lufthansa Cargo. This underscores our claim to be the industry pioneer in digitisation. There is still so much more for us to achieve here together with shippers, forwarders and airports,” commented Sören Stark, Board member Operations and COO of Lufthansa Cargo.

“Our shipping portal solves a major challenge in the air cargo supply chain, ensuring greater reliability and transparency for all. We are greatly simplifying processes across company boundaries,” explained Ulrich Wrage, CEO of software company Dakosy. His company operates the Cargo Community System at Frankfurt Airport and the Port Community System for the Port of Hamburg.

In addition to Lufthansa Cargo, Panalpina and Fraport AG have been key partners with the Dakosy eDGD launch: “Thanks to this worldwide innovation, the INFr8 platform integrates the shipper into the electronic information chain of the air cargo process for the first time. We expect this to result in shorter check-in times and much faster handling of dangerous goods,” added Fraport AG executive director of Operations Anke Giesen.

STAMFORD, CT: September 25, 2017. Gartner's latest European Supply Chain Top 15 ranks Unilever No.1 for the second year running with Inditex taking second place followed by H&M.

Echoing the results of Gartner's Global Supply Chain Top 25, the company has identified digital experimentation, speed to adaptability and a focus on sustainability as the leading trends in European supply chains.

pukka tea"The bedrock of these successful trends are core foundational themes — common to all leading supply chain organizations — that have created a culture of excellence and relentless drive to continuously improve," said Stan Aronow, vice president of Research at Gartner.

"The companies in the European Top 15 [have] demonstrated strong growth of 6.8 percent, which is more than double the average growth of the global top 25," he explained.

According to Gartner all these companies have common themes including global scale, local responsiveness, multiple models through segmentation, collaboration across whatever network is required to achieve a goal, investment in talent, and a culture of excellence and masters of change.

The Top 15 are: Unilever, Inditex, H&M, Nestlé, Nokia, BASF, Schneider Electric, L'Oréal, BMW, Diageo, Reckitt Benckiser, GlaxoSmithKline, Adidas, Roche and Siemens.

Three new entrants have been added to Gartner's list this year with Adidas at No. 13, No. 14 Roche, and No. 15 Siemens. They replace three companies that have fallen off the list since 2016: British American Tobacco at No.13, Ahold Delhaize at No.14 and No. 15 Bayer.

For the current Top 15, Garner says transformation is not a one-time project but "a way of life". In addition to strong lean Six Sigma continuous improvement, and quality and standardization initiatives that maintain a focus on operational excellence, "they have dedicated resources to dream, pilot and drive disruptive change across the organization," said Aronow.

(Pictured: As part of its sustainable planet business model, this month Unilever acquired the organic herbal tea business, Pukka Herbs - founded in 2001 with 100 percent certified, organic and ethically sourced ingredients with a goal to benefit people, plants and planet.)

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