Supply Chain

Latest Supply Chain sector features from across Africa.

Latest Supply Chain Corporate Stories

Freightworx

Delivering your tomorrow, today Freightworx have risen from one man with a vision, to a multi-national logistics powerhouse Writer Matt Bone Project manager Stuart Shirra Freightworx was established in 1999 in South Africa, when a demand arose for airfreight cargo to the north of Tanzania. Having serviced the majority of other freight markets as well as numerous mines in the area, the company decided to increase its options and began to incorporate alternative means of transporting freight. Since then Freightworx has grown considerably to a stage where they now employ in excess of 100 people. Throughout the organisation, revenue has grown from US$1million to US$12 million. Freightworx specialises in the field of international freight, project freight and logistics on a global scale. Freightworx offers a door to door service into Africa and 450 cities in 130 countries worldwide. Raj Maharaj, the CEO of Freightworx, has seen his company grow from just one man with a vision, into one of the largest logistics companies in Sub Saharan Africa. "We are a leading logistics company that has set the standard as a supply chain and logistical solutions provider to various industries. From our humble beginnings as a one man operation, I have seen the company evolve into a one stop solution by providing export and import services, air, sea and road freight as well as offering handling, storage and packaging services as well." Global Logistics Global Trade is a complex and challenging business where success depends on specialised knowledge and personal contact. Freightworx have implemented key strategies and

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Imperial Logistics

Imperial Targets African Growth Imperial Logistics has been reinvented and is targeting African growth. Chief Integration Office Cobus Rossouw talks to Ian Armitage Writer Ian Armitage Project manager Stuart Shirra Supply chain and logistics group Imperial Logistics has reinvented itself and, says chief integration officer Cobus Rossouw, is now better able to offer clients "customised solutions that boost their competitiveness". "We decided we wanted to take a step forward and that is by focusing on what we can do for our clients," he explains. "Imperial Logistics offers more than just logistics and our capabilities extend into things procurement and brand activation." Rossouw sees Imperial as a growth enabler. "We are an extension of our own customers' business, building their brands alongside our own business. Our own differentiators lie in a combination of an extensive resource base and world class integrative processes and technology. We apply our supply chain management skills to manage operational processes across end-to-end value chains on behalf of our clients." To make sure it delivers on this promise Imperial has been streamlining and simplifying its business, honing in on its capabilities. One such consolidation merged group companies BROCO and Cargo Africa into Imperial Managed Logistics. "We also created Imperial Retail Logistics, previously known as TFD Network Africa, by incorporating contracts from other Imperial businesses," Rossouw adds. These businesses specialise in enhancing customers' logistics and supply chain network capabilities. "We can take your product from manufacturing to the point of purchase – that is what we can do," says Rossouw. "We are the only

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Paccon Logistics

Proudly South African Paccon Logistics is a multi-disciplinary freight management company operating from Durban in South Africa. Writer Rebecca Wigmore Project manager Stuart Shirra It's an exciting time to work at Paccon Logistics. In 2013 the founding directors of this South African freight company - Andrew Wallace and Steve Gillespie - successfully purchased the minority interest that was formerly held by Paccon Logistics Australia. This means that the company is now, in its founders' own words, "100 percent proudly South African". It is by no means the new kid on the block, however. Paccon Logistics, which prides itself on its local knowledge and on-the-ground experience, was established in the early 2000s and next year will celebrate ten years in business. This near-decade of experience means that Paccon has built a rock-solid reputation, with a noted specialty in heavy industrial and project logistics. To this end, the firm doesn't own its own fleet but instead manage and outsource to much-trusted third party sub contractors from cargo surveyors to abnormal transport operators and border agents. Paccon's core activities centre on heavy industry sectors in South Africa and its neighbouring countries Botswana, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Going it alone It seems appropriate that 2014 will herald a new era of independence for Paccon, as the company was built in the spirit of entrepreneurship and regional know-how. However it wasn't always so easy as Andrew Wallace explains: "After around 20 years of working for corporates I became disenchanted with office politics and decided to open my

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Imperial Logistics

Imperial Targets African Growth Imperial Logistics has been reinvented and is targeting African growth. Chief Integration Office Cobus Rossouw talks to Ian Armitage Writer Ian Armitage Project manager Stuart Shirra Supply chain and logistics group Imperial Logistics has reinvented itself and, says chief integration officer Cobus Rossouw, is now better able to offer clients "customised solutions that boost their competitiveness". "We decided we wanted to take a step forward and that is by focusing on what we can do for our clients," he explains. "Imperial Logistics offers more than just logistics and our capabilities extend into things procurement and brand activation." Rossouw sees Imperial as a growth enabler. "We are an extension of our own customers' business, building their brands alongside our own business. Our own differentiators lie in a combination of an extensive resource base and world class integrative processes and technology. We apply our supply chain management skills to manage operational processes across end-to-end value chains on behalf of our clients." To make sure it delivers on this promise Imperial has been streamlining and simplifying its business, honing in on its capabilities. One such consolidation merged group companies BROCO and Cargo Africa into Imperial Managed Logistics. "We also created Imperial Retail Logistics, previously known as TFD Network Africa, by incorporating contracts from other Imperial businesses," Rossouw adds. These businesses specialise in enhancing customers' logistics and supply chain network capabilities. "We can take your product from manufacturing to the point of purchase – that is what we can do," says Rossouw. "We are the only

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Berry & Donaldson

Half A Century Of Logistics Berry & Donaldson is one of South Africa's largest private forwarding and clearing agents. Writer Chris Farnell Project manager Stuart Shirra This is a year of 50th anniversaries. It's the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, of the assassination of JFK, the Beatles debut album and, according to the poet Philip Larkin, sex. One of the auspicious 50th anniversaries being celebrated in 2013 is that of global supply chain and logistics company Berry & Donaldson. Berry & Donaldson is one of the largest forwarding and clearing firms in the whole of South Africa and it's not surprising the company is using this as an excuse for both celebration and reflection. "We've had a bit of a media splash," explains Stuart Friedmann, Berry & Donaldson's Managing Director. "We had an internal party and a conference for some of our clients. The industry has changed dramatically over the last 50 years, becoming more technologically integrated. We've acquired a new software system called CargoWise and we have a huge forwarding network we've forged over the last 50 years. Our overseas agents are owner managed, picked for their size and ability to work within their own regions. We have our own fleet of vehicles and air freight warehouses, and with our office in Hong Kong our international presence is opening up." While Friedmann is firmly focused on the future of the company he's also extremely proud of how well established the company is already. "We're a family company that started off as a clearing house and

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Air Uganda

The wings of East Africa Meridiana Africa Airlines Limited, trading as Air Uganda, is a privately owned airline founded in 2007 in Uganda. Writer Hannah Eisman-Reynard Project manager James Mitchell Air Uganda was established in 2007 as a quality regional airline after more than 20 years without a national carrier in Uganda. In the six years since, the airline has grown from serving approximately 80,000 passengers a year to 170,000 passengers per year and runs on the basis of three pillars of high service and operating standards, reliability and punctuality. "How has the past year been for business for Air Uganda?" asks Cornwell Muleya, CEO of Air Uganda. "We have been growing steadily over the past year and have consolidated our routes across East Africa. The Ugandan air transportation market has been growing at approximately 15 percent every year now for six years in a row. Incidentally, we turned six years old today." Air Uganda, otherwise known as "the wings of East Africa", runs a two class product on board: Crane Class, which is its premium products, and an economy class. The airline also runs a frequent flyer programme called the Celestair Club. "We maintain a small, homogenous fleet," continues Mr Muleya. "This allows us to standardise our product on board and minimise operating costs. We were founded in 2007 in response to the need of Uganda to have an airline operating out of Entebbe airport. From here we connect passengers to all major cities in East Africa and in particular to Nairobi, Bujumbura, Mombasa, Juba,

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Elite Clearing & Forwarding

A clear winner Elite Clearing and Forwarding (Pty) Ltd is an expert international shipping company offering comprehensive logistics & freight solutions. Writer Chris Farnell Project manager Stuart Shirra Whatever industry you work in, the chances are that at some point you rely on logistics. Whether it's a question of importing essential supplies, or getting your own products to foreign markets, virtually every company has to, at some point, entrust the cargo that makes it possible for them to do business to someone else, often over a long distance with plenty of potential hazards along the way. Elite Clearing and Forwarding is a company dedicated towards making that part of your business as painless as possible. As Ben Van Rensburg, Elite Clearing and Forwarding's Managing Director explains, "We see ourselves as a logistical management company. We manage the process from A-Z, making sure everyone involved does whatever is needed to get cargo from the start to the end of its journey with the least possible risk and in the most cost effective way." The movement of cargo doesn't just involve one component; it may involve trucks, ships, warehouses, harbours or planes, each run by a separate company with its own procedures, rules and communications channels. This creates a potential minefield of problems as cargo is passed from one company to another. Elite Clearing and Forwarding's job is to make that transition as smooth as possible with no or minimal delays at the lowest cost. "We act somewhat like a musical conductor," Van Rensburg says. "By making sure

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Total Facilities Management Company

Winning partnerships Total Facilities Management Company (TFMC) is the largest facilities management company in South Africa, providing integrated facilities management that minimises costs "through forward looking performance-based risk and maintenance strategies". We talk to managing executive Cornelius Van Der Merwe. Writer Ian Armitage Project manager Stuart Shirra Facilities management is a critical, strategic business discipline with organisations the world over increasingly occupying complex buildings and using sophisticated technology for communications and control. Professional FM is needed to plan, maintain and manage such facilities. It is part of the drive to meet the higher demands of organisations and Individuals - we all have high expectations and good facilities management can deliver flexibility, adaptability and sustainability. Nobody understands this better than Total Facilities Management Company (TFMC). In South Africa you don't get bigger than them. "Facilities Management is so integrated in our lives that we don't realise how many times a day we actually engage in and experience facilities management," says managing executive Cornelius van der Merwe. "We are surrounded with our work environments for most of our days and almost everything we touch during a day is part of the facilities that support our core businesses. Think of the amount of times you touch doors, chairs, tables, flooring, ablution facilities and so many other not so obvious things like lighting and air conditioning not to mention the power we utilise at the various outlets where we require it." Many companies have the perception that facilities management is merely the maintenance of their buildings which can be done

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Tsebo Outsourcing Group

Food for thought Tsebo Outsourcing Group offers market-leading services in outsourced catering solutions, contract cleaning and hygiene solutions. We talk to Dr Chris Jardine, the man who heads up its Catering arm. Writer Ian Armitage Project manager Stuart Shirra Dr Chris Jardine heads up Tsebo Catering Solutions, a South African market leader, which is part of Tsebo Outsourcing Group, the country's largest hospitality services and facilities management company. He is the former group CEO of the J and J Group, a diversified investment and management company and has worked in the logistics, IT and telecommunications, and industrial and financial services sectors. Besides his strong operational track record, Dr Jardine has also served on the boards of companies as diverse as MTN, Transnet, Macquarie First South and Union Carriage and Wagons. He holds BS and MS degrees in Computer Science and a PhD in Information Technology, all from George Mason University in Virginia. It is an impressive CV and he has been using all of his experience to do some pretty interesting things at Tsebo Catering as it looks to keep pace in a changing world, faced with competition for talent. "We needed to differentiate ourselves by doing things that haven't been done before," he says. "What became evident was focusing on the basics first. We started with a refreshed operational excellence programme and we've looked at our service culture – from the way we greet our customers on a day-to-day basis to the way we present our food. We also looked at our reporting systems and

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Ethiopian Airlines

Living the dream Ethiopian Airlines makes record high profit of 2.7 billion birr Writer Ian Armitage Project manager James Mitchell Ethiopian Airlines recently announced it made a record profit. The company's chief executive officer, Tewolde Gebremariam, credited the profitability to the use of new, modern and fuel-efficient jetliners such as the Boeing B787 Dreamliner and B777, and his "exceptionally dedicated employees". The company's operating profit between July 2012 and June 2013 was 2.7 billion birr, 165 percent up from the profit made the previous year. Net profit increased by 178 percent from 734 million to 2.03 billion and the airline generated a revenue of 38.5 billion, up by 14 percent. It transported 5.5 million passengers and hauled 174,000 tons of cargo during the year. "The 2012-2013 fiscal year has been a challenging year for the global industry in which many airlines faced factors that have affected their performance," Ethiopian Airlines told Africa Outlook in a recent interview. "These factors include high and volatile fuel price and weak global economic situations which in turn reflect in low demand for travel. Although Ethiopian was no different and was faced with similar challenges, it managed to finish the year with record revenues and performance and continue its double digit growth registered over the last decade." During the year, Ethiopian took delivery of 14 new aircraft, deploying ultramodern fuel-efficient aircraft. The Boeing B787 uses 20 percent less fuel - its airframe is predominantly made from composites, which account for 50 percent of the aircraft by weight. This makes the aeroplane

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