Operators

Port-Centric Logistics Model

port-centric logistics model

London Gateway, UK’s most automated port, has adopted a port-centric logistics model. This essentially means customers locate at or close to the port, so reducing road kilometres, and saving time and money. 

“This uniquely gives us the opportunity for customers and supply chain partners to have a port-based solution, allowing more efficiency when servicing the UK market,” explains John Trenchard, Commercial and Supply Chain Director UK.

Ernst Schulze, DP World’s UK CEO says this model has proved particularly popular in recent years, with the Covid pandemic and geopolitical issues making the supply chain more complex than ever before. 

port-centric logistics model

“A lot of cargo owners don’t want to be involved in the supply chain, and that’s where we come in,” he says. “The port-centric concept that we put in place 10 years ago has been very successful, and now we are trying to copy it in other areas of the world, as well as in Southampton.”

While the port-centric model has definitely helped DP World achieve double-digit growth over the last 10 years, Schulze acknowledges that there has also been an element of ‘right time, right place’, which is a result of a recent surge in international trade.

“When I grew up in the Netherlands, in the winter we either had an apple or a pear, as they were locally produced,” he tells us. “These days you go to a supermarket and you have so much choice. You can have blueberries, you can have them organic, sweet, big, or whatever way you want. There is a lot of demand from customers and we are very spoiled with that demand. The world has become more complex, and DP World has jumped right in.”

On average London Gateway has 30 services (ships) per week.

“The market we mainly serve here is called north-south,” explains Schulze. “It’s mainly South America, Africa, the Mediterranean, India, Pakistan and Turkey. We do have some services from the Far East, but not as many as Southampton.” 

Vessels from the Far East tend to be larger, which is one of the reasons why London Gateway is currently embarking on a major expansion. It is currently building a fourth berth, which will increase the port’s capacity by 30 per cent. The $658m project, which is employing 1,000 people in its construction, will be completed by the middle of 2024.

In 2022 the port reported a 14 per cent annual increase in volumes, reaching 2.05 TEU (Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit), and breaking the 2 million TEU barrier for the first time.

 Pics: tomlee.gallery

 

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