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Transplace and Celtic International roll out more Mexico-based intermodal offerings

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
May 22, 2014

Non asset-based third-party logistics (3PL) services provider Transplace and its company-owned intermodal marketing company (IMC) Celtic International recently announced they have expanded its cross-border and intra-Mexico intermodal services, which they said will provide shippers with a more thorough U.S.-Mexico service for intermodal freight moving in and out of Mexico.

Transplace said that these new intermodal offerings better position Transplace and Celtic to leverage the still-increasing usage of domestic intermodal, which continues to see impressive annual (total 2013 volumes were up 4.6 percent over 2012, according to the Intermodal Association of North America) and quarterly basis. And the company observed that even though the gains are impressive, there is more room for growth, citing a report from investment firm Raymond James and Associates that dubbed Mexico the “final frontier” for the North American intermodal market, with intermodal over the U.S.-Mexico border still in its infancy as market share is in the low single digit rates.

“We have been working on this project for a few months now,” said Ben Enriquez, Country Director, Mexico, Transplace, in an interview. “The need was driven by the market itself. Customers that have historically managed truckload want to diversify their portfolio, as capacity in several U.S. and Mexican markets is getting tighter. Driver shortages in the U.S. market have also created capacity constrains between the US and Mexico.  Customers are looking into rail as an alternative for capacity constraints and we can provide the service.”

The Transplace executive explained that with this new service offering Celtic and Transplace can provide door-to-door rail service between the U.S. and Mexico, noting that their service offering includes a pool of more than 100,000 containers from the main railroads.

“With this expansion we can service the main Mexican markets exporting or importing from the U.S.,” he said.

As for the main shipper benefits of these cross-border intermodal offerings, Enriquez said as a 3PL Transplace can provide a full variety of solutions that include rail service and customs brokerage in the main Mexican rail ramps. And in combination with its Celtic System it can provide seamless door-to-door visibility from origin to destination for its customers doing business between Mexican and the U.S.

In October 2011, Transplace joined forces with Chicago-based intermodal Celtic to “form a leading North American logistics provider.” When this was first announced, they said each company will maintain its separate presences in the marketplace, they said that the combined company will have revenue north of $1 billion, coupled with a strong presence in transportation management, logistics technology, intermodal services, and truck brokerage.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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