Wilhelmsen Ships Service launches Regional Distribution Hub for Asia Pacific in Singapore
Dec. 2, 2009 - Wilhelmsen Ships Service has announced the official opening in Singapore of one of its largest regional distribution hubs.
The 12,000-sq m warehouse and logistics distribution centre, which serves 28 countries in the Asia Pacific, was built at an investment of S$5 million.
The establishment of the facility underlines the Republic's importance to Wilhelmsen Ships Service as its main regional headquarters for Asia Pacific.
The establishment of the regional distribution hub also forms part of Wilhelmsen Ships Service's global strategy to enhance its distribution capabilities to cater to the needs of ship owners at a time of depressed freight rates and economic downturn.
"The shipping industry is undergoing one of the most severe global economic recessions which has prompted ship owners to further assess the efficiencies of their supply chain. This new investment in developing our logistics and warehousing infrastructure at a particularly challenging time for the shipping industry, is a testament to our serious intent to serve the maritime industry. We are here to serve in both good and difficult times," says Niall Denholm, Area Director South East Asia, Wilhelmsen Ships Service.
The Singapore regional distribution centre is integral to boosting the capabilities of the world's largest maritime services company, which has 313 offices in 73 countries and handles 53,000 port calls and makes 200,000 product deliveries to some 21,000 vessels annually.
How customers benefit
Located near the West Coast Jetty, Wilhelmsen Ships Service's regional distribution centre uses the latest in supply chain management technologies, including an inventory tracking system and a Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) racking system, to safely transport and store some 2,500 product lines for use onboard vessels, ranging from chemicals, maintenance, repair, refrigeration and safety.
With the regional hub, ship owners, ship managers, shipyards and other customers can expect an efficient delivery of a far wider range of products. The quicker response times and faster turnaround for urgent orders in turn help owners to eliminate downtime and save costs.
With the modifications and facility upgrades Wilhelmsen Ships Service has been able to further enhance its safety and environmental standards. Certification has been awarded for both the effective and safe management of hazardous and non-hazardous liquid products and gases.
The regional distribution centre is located next to a dedicated Wilhelmsen Ships Service managed wharf where ordered products can be loaded onto supply vessels directly and delivered to ships out at sea in one seamless operation.
The facility also features workshops in which products can be modified, repaired or upgraded before they are shipped out.
Mr Denholm shares the case of a customer that has benefited from improved turnaround times. He says: "We had an urgent weekend order for 14,000 litres of fire fighting foam to be delivered to a U.K. based vessel. The order was received late Saturday evening and the vessel was due to arrive the next day and leave the same afternoon. We were able to pick the inventory at our warehouse on Saturday night, and at 9.30 am on Sunday morning, load our delivery launch at our jetty. We delivered the product to the vessel, which was anchored at the far end of eastern anchorage (near Changi Airport), at 1.45 pm and the vessel departed."
Wilhelmsen Ships Service is the leading maritime supplier of products and services to international merchant fleet. The Group also operates regional distribution centres in Rotterdam and Houston.