Ocean cargo carriers can take nothing for granted

The container shipping industry stands on the brink of an “era-defining moment” as it faces fundamental challenges, said Maersk Line CEO, Eivind Kolding
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
June 07, 2011 - LM Editorial

The tired old cliché, “thinking outside the box,” takes on new meaning when invoked by the world’s leading container shipping company.

The container shipping industry stands on the brink of an “era-defining moment” as it faces fundamental challenges, said Maersk Line CEO, Eivind Kolding. In a keynote address at a major EU logistics event, he declared that if container the shipping industry is to secure its right to operate in the future, the industry needs to change now.??

While Kolding, no doubt, holds his own political and religious convictions, he only shares his views on the business of shipping with his constituents. For this, he is to be applauded.

He noted that containerization – often referred to as the engine of globalization – revolutionized world trade. The potential it unlocked by connecting producers and consumers across the world enabled both shipping lines and their customers to develop their businesses in ways that previously had seemed impossible.

“However, container shipping, is also the story of an established business model that often disappoints customers: one in every two containers is late, shipping lines are complex to do business with, and the industry, even while being the most environmentally-friendly transportation mode, still lacks transparency and common goals,” he said.?

With examples from the automotive, aviation, portable music players and mobile phone industries, Eivind Kolding told the conference that just because an industry is established it may only be a “few years from being completely overtaken” by new technology. And, that market and customer behavior is forcing companies to “never lose sight of what customers really want” - including the needs that they are not even aware of.

“Why not see these as fantastic opportunities?” he asked. “What if we could guarantee that cargo would be on time, every time? What if placing a shipping order was as easy as buying an airline ticket? What if the shipping industry was known for beating environmental expectations – not struggling to meet them?”

For related articles click here.



About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor

Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

Mexico's growing importance in the continental supply chain is now being recognized by North American transportation groups

Satish Jindel, president of Pittsburgh-based SJ Consulting, says that one way for LTL carriers to improve both their bottom lines and overall productivity is to get a better grasp on the cost of handling a shipment and the pricing they have for it.

Falling 5.5 cents to $2.668 per gallon, this follows last week’s 5.9 cent decline for the lowest weekly average price going back to the week of October 14, 2009, when it was at $2.60 per gallon.

With the latest round of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations in Maui, Hawaii ending without a deal, U.S. supply managers may be adjusting to other global sourcing strategies.

The PMI, the ISM’s index to measure growth fell 0.8 percent to 52.7 (a PMI of 50 or greater represents growth). PMI growth has been at 50 or higher for 31 straight months (with the overall economy growing for 74 months), and the current PMI is 1.7 percent below the 12-month average of 54.4.

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.


© Copyright 2015 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA