The rise of 3PL providers to bridge logistics gaps

Published: Saturday, March 18, 2017

As manufacturers and retailers continue to focus on controlling costs, at the same time, increasing their agility and responsiveness, third-party logistics (3PL) providers have become a vital resource.

Seventy-two percent of shippers are planning to increase the use of 3PLs in the future, according to 2014’s 18th Annual Third Party Logistics Study published by Penn State and Capgemini’s Dr. John Langley.

While market volatility and the rise of the omni channel marketplace have created significant challenges for manufacturers and retailers, these trends are also creating tremendous opportunities for 3PLs that can bring the right method to help solve customers’ most pressing issues.

Air Cargo Update sat down with C o – f o u n d e r and Managing Director o f R S A L o g i s t i c s Abhishek Ajay Shah to discuss how RSA Logistics identify and bridge 3PL gaps.

Identifying 3PL gaps RSA Logisticsis recognizedfor identifying gaps in the market and providing niche logistics services that bridge these gaps to cater to the pressing needs of customers.

“We have used our strength in building strategic partnerships and in asset design and management to deliver,
for example, specific chemical logistics services to this region, under the banner RSA-TALKE. Recently we
inaugurated an integrated chemical logistics hub that provides comprehensive storage, handling and maintenance services to ISO tanks.”

Implementing IFMS Last year, RSA Logistics signed an agreement with Ramco Systems, a leading Enterprise Software provider through Cloud, Mobile and Tablets to implement its Integrated Freight Management System (IFMS), an endto-
end solution suite that addresses the complete process flow of the Shipping and Transportation Industry.

Asked why it was necessary to implement it for the smooth flow of shipping and transportation in the industry, Abhishek responded, “For us, effective process improvements, operational control and cost management is a priority. Tracking shipments status proactively, with precision, plays an important role for our customers, as well as providing the history of shipments and their costs and profitability. We offer our clients’ customized reports which meet periodic and monthly reporting requirements as per their needs. Integrated process esthat are
enabled across departments increase operational efficiency and ensures no human errors.

also provide instant reliability report
generation for effective performance
m o n i t o r i n g a l o n g w i t h 1 0 0 %
accuracy in invoicing and age

Smart transportation

R S A L o g i s t i c s b e l i e v e s S m a r t
Transportation is the way forward in
providing customers with reliable
data on the movement of their
products, to improve the operational
efficiency of the vehicles and to
achieve the shortest delivery times.

“We have already adopted vehicle
tracking technologies including
mo b i l e a p p s t h a t p ro v i d e o u r
customers with real-time data on our
s h i p m e n t s a s w e l l a s fl e e t
management metrics.”

Integrated Chemical Hub

L a s t ye a r, R S A ce l e b r a t e d t h e
completion of the first phase of its
integrated chemical hub at Dubai

The chemical hub is a storage and
transhipment capacity for up to 1800
TEU (Twenty-foot Equivalent Unit) –
designed for empty or laden ISO tank
containers with class 3, 6, 8 and 9
hazardous chemicals.

“The hub is an integrated chemical
logistics facility which provides a
complete solution for liquid
chemical logistics. A laden ISO
tank container can be received in
the facility to be stored. Further,
the laden ISO tanks can be
c o n n e c t e d l a t e r o n t o t h e
drumming facility to refill the
liquid chemical from the tank into
drums or IBCs. These packed
liquids in drums and IBCs can then
be stored in the state of the art
chemical warehouse which is
d i r e c t l y c o n n e c t e d t o t h e
drumming station.

“The emptied ISO tank container can
be moved for cleaning afterwards
a n d i f r e q u i r e d r e p a i r a n d
m a i n t e n a n c e s e r v i c e s c a n b e
executed including testing. The
cleaned ISO tank can be stored in the
yard again until it will be dispatched
again to continue its journey in the
supply chain.

“ T h e i n t e g r a t e d c h emi c a l h u b
c o m p l e m e n t s o u r e x i s t i n g
warehouse facilities in regards to the
e x t e n s i o n o f o u r h a z a r d o u s
wa re h o u s i n g c a p a c i t i e s wh i c h
provides additional flexibility for our
customers. Further, all our facilities
are extending the service portfolio of
chemical logistics and raising the bar
regarding health and safety standards
within the UAE and beyond,” explains

Abhishek chose Dubai South as it’s
i d e a l l y l o c a t e d b e t w e e n A l
Maktoum International Airport, one
o f t h e w o r l d ‘ s l a r g e s t c a r g o
terminals and Jebel Ali Port, one of the world’s busiest shipping ports.
“Moreover, our customers greatly
benefit from being able to store in a
free zone, coupled with the logistics
corridor connecting Sea and Air
cargo flows”.

Breaking grounds with RCC

With global temperatures hitting
high in the UAE, coupled with the
demand for food products due to a
rise in population, there is a critical
need for reliable cold storage
solutions. The newest venture of
RSA’s Cold Chain (RCC) broke
grounds recently in the presence of a
delegation headed by the Acting
CEO of Dubai South Mr.Ahmed Al

RCC will commence its operations
t h i s Ma r c h , o f f e r i n g a n i n i t i a l
capacity of 21000 pallets, coupled
with sophisticated end-to-end 3PL
services for packaged food, fresh
f r u i t s a n d v e g e t a b l e s , d a i r y
products and frozen food.

“ R C C h a s e i g h t i n d e p e n d e n t
chambers that can potentially house
2 1 , 0 0 0 p a l l e t p o s i t i o n s . E a c h
chamber’s temperature can be
customised to temperatures of as
low as -25ºC. The facility will have
strict adherence to the highest
HSSEQ standards, and our staff is
occupational-health-certified,” said

“The loading bays accommodate
multiple plug-in points for reefer
trucks during loading & offloading to
maintain the temperature for the
products in transit. We also provide
value-added services like shrink
wrapping, re-bagging, labelling, repalletisation
& co-packing for the
ease of our customers,” he added.
T h e b r a n d n e w e n t i t y w a s
c o n c e i v e d t o m e e t d e m a n d s ,
particularly in the lead up for Expo
2020 when Dubai will be all set to
increase its residents and workforce

“Expo 2020 is going to create a surge
in demand for food products. More
specifically, the MENA region is
g o i n g t o s e e a n i n c r e a s e i n
processed food demand to the tune
of $175 billion. The RSA Cold Chain
(RCC) project was strategically
timed to meet this anticipated
volume. Moreover, we felt that the
market was in need for dedicated
cold chain services that put greater
f o c u s o n m a i n t a i n i n g t h e
t e m p e r a t u r e i n t e g r i t y o f t h e
products at every step of the way.
RCC is a dedicated solution which
includes a sophisticated warehousing
facility and smart transportation
to meet this requirement”.

‘Under-served’ industry

RSA’s mission to launch RCC is the
next step in integrity in the cold
chain supply chain with the use of
proprietary technology.

“We see tremendous breaks in the
cold chain from arrival in the reefer
to the distribution centre to the final
mile distribution, to the retailers’
shelves. Our mission is to solve that
by working with our customers and
integrating information not only of
s t o c k a n d m o v e m e n t b u t
t e m p e r a t u r e & q u a l i t y
management. This coupled with a
lack in capacity; we see this as an
exciting step in changing the Cold
Chain supply chain”.

GCC expansion and beyond

RSA is looking forward to expanding
geographically to better serve more
of the markets in the region as well as
in Asia and Africa. As they see “great
potential from Africa in particular”.
Europe is not a focus area for their

Recently, the 3PL logistics provider
expanded its operations in Dubai
Investments Park (DIP) with a new
warehousing facility strategically
located within the DIP complex to
s e r v e c u s t o m e r s w i t h f a s t e r
distribution in the local markets.
Adding to RSA’s existing contract
logistics capabilities, the warehouse
spreads across 2500sqm with a
total of 2500 pallets in capacity,
designed to store general cargo and
handle a diverse range of product
categories including fast moving
c o n s u m e r g o o d s ( F M C G ) a n d
b e a u t y p r o d u c t s , o f f e r i n g a n
extensive range of value added
services such as distribution, crossdocking
and ecommerce to meet
diverse customer requirements
with international standards.

“ O u r n e w f a c i l i t y i n D I P i s i n
proximity to the Expo 2020 site
making it a favoured location to
b e g i n o p e r a t i o n s g i v e n t h e
projected increase in economic
growth resulting from the mega
e v e n t . I t a l s o r e i n f o r c e s o u r
commitment to bridging gaps in the
market-based the market’s & our
c u s t ome r s ‘ n e e d s ,” c o n c l u d e s