Tuesday, February 14, 2012

New Road Haulage Cooperative Harlequin Logistics Start the Day Right

Kellogg's Freight Requirements Fulfilled by New Kid on the Block
Shipping News Feature

UK – As times get tougher in all sectors of freight and logistics, road haulage operators are traditionally the barometer of the state of the industry with the smaller outfits often suffering disproportionately simply by reason of economy of scale. There are two possible courses of action, batten down the hatches and minimise servicing and standing costs and hope to survive longer than the next man or, collaborate and cooperate to build a stronger and more flexible service in company with former competitors.

This latter is the chosen route for Harlequin Logistics which came about as a result of a move by long term transport professional Paul Smith who persuaded five of Britain’s best known privately owned haulage groups to link up under the Harlequin banner in an attempt to gain large scale contracts traditionally acquired by the larger 3PL providers, many of whom don’t own any equipment whatsoever.

Now, just six months after the company’s inception, Harlequin has announced details of a major contract win by signing up household name and leading international brand Kellogg’s. Harlequin will take responsibility for the distribution from Kellogg’s Manchester hub to retailer RDC’s, wholesalers and cash & carries nationwide. MD Paul Smith commented:

“The fact that Kellogg’s, one of the world’s best-known and most iconic brands, has opted for Harlequin as its transport supplier, speaks volumes. We will deliver around 15,000 Kellogg’s loads this year, from Scotland to the South Coast, and are confident that our unique structure will enhance the service provided.

“The global economic downturn has affected everyone in the last four years, meaning even the biggest companies now seek innovation from their suppliers. Harlequin offers this by combining all that is good about traditional, privately-owned haulage with experienced management, proven systems and a willingness to embrace a collaborative approach.

“Kellogg’s and Harlequin have identified that we share many common goals, and we will therefore work together towards the establishment of a sustainable transport model. We believe this type of approach, which delivers both commercial and environmental benefits, will become the norm as the logistics industry emerges from recession.

“This is a great start for Harlequin, and we are working flat out to reward Kellogg’s for their faith in us. But this deal is also just the start – we already have a steady flow of enquiries from businesses who want to move their logistics forwards, and as awareness of Harlequin grows, I am confident this flow will become a torrent.”