CEVA opens new less-than-container load lanes to Singapore and United Arab Emirates
February 13, 2012
Taking its next steps in launching a less-than-container load (LCL) offering, global third-party logistics (3PL) services provider CEVA Logistics announced today that it has opened two new LCL lanes.
Company officials said these new lanes are from Houston, Texas to Singapore and Jebal Ali, United Arab Emirates and are part of the company’s strategy to increase its share of its own consolidated boxes over the use of co-loaded lanes.
LCL services have been a focus for CEVA for years, and last November the company added a new LCL service from Hamburg, Germany to New York. At the time of this announcement, CEVA stated that LCL offerings provide faster cargo availability and a lower risk of U.S. custom holds and other related expenses. By having more control over cargo, CEVA has been able to dedicate LCL service internally and in turn support direct consolidations.
“There is no one single—or right—way to move LCL cargo,” said Greg Scott, Global LCL Director for CEVA, in an interview. “We decided that we wanted to start taking control of our cargo and have the steering capabilities for cargo by controlling and loading our own boxes. From the top down, to be viewed as an ocean carrier, LCL carrier or as a company that plays the game with a product, if you are giving your cargo away to a consolidator you are not necessarily viewed as a player in the market. Our goal was to own and close our own boxes.”
For the new LCL services from Houston to Sinagapore and Jebal Ali, Scott said CEVA has an ocean contract with the carriers moving the boxes (it has a network of six-to-eight core carriers it uses for LCL services), said Scott. And from a freight holding perspective it controls and steers the cargo and plans routing, as evidenced by hiring 25 staffers globally to oversee the company’s global LCL product.
For U.S. outbound-specific cargo, CEVA has a group in Chicago of eight people that handle LCL consolidation, planning, routing, booking of carriers, load coordination, and planning with partner steamship lines, among other steering-related duties, which Scott said are all done in house.
“This process is extremely flexible and we have multiple instances in which shipments need to be held by ocean to move by air or vice versa and it is the flexibility in working with CEVA and our service offering in being able to control the cargo and meet customer needs through our domestic system and airfreight service makes it possible for customers to change modes whenever they need to,” he said.
CEVA said the Houston to Singapore lane includes direct service loading in Houston with cargo also being consolidated from Dallas and New Orleans to ensure sufficient economies of scale. The service sails from Los Angeles and has a transit time of about 40 days, and it provides shippers with direct access to more than 100 trans-shipment destinations throughout Southeast Asia and the Indian sub-continent, managed by CEVA in Singapore. The first Houston to Singapore sailing is set for February 24, said CEVA.
And the first sailing from Houston to Jebel Ali took place on February 7, with cargo consolidated from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas and New Orleans, and a transit time of about 34 days, said CEVA. The company said this service reduces unnecessary additional handling in comparison with sending via New York while reducing the dwell time between cargo receipt and sailing.
Scott said setting up this service to Singapore and Jebal Ali made sense due to CEVA’s high amount of business in each region, as well as its presence in Houston in the energy market, specifically oil and gas.
He said for each LCL vessel movement there are about eight-to-12 customer house bill of ladings per container.
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