As of July 2017, Imperial Logistics’ Managed Solutions – representing an amalgamation of a number of Imperial businesses with similar or complementary service offerings – will officially embark on its tireless quest to change the face of logistics across the African continent and beyond. “With global trade dynamics becoming increasingly complicated, there is a growing need for innovation that optimise supply chains and reduce risk and complexity,” explains Managed Solutions’ chief executive officer, Johan Truter. “At Imperial, we recognise this need – and the opportunities that it presents – and we have carefully crafted our managed solutions strategy to ensure the delivery of customised, integrated, supply chain solutions that will change the way our clients think about logistics.”
The business has deep expertise across multiple industries – including FMCG, retail, automotive, industrial, mining, agriculture and healthcare. “Each industry comes with different logistics demands – from the bulk hauling of mining to the multiple temperature requirements of FMCG and the highly specialised regulatory dynamics of the healthcare supply chain,” expands Truter “but our unrivalled approach means that we can source even the most specialised resources for our clients as and when they are required.”
Grounded in an asset-light business model, Managed Solutions will combine the agility of outsourced assets and resources with solid expertise – built over four decades – in delivering new ways to drive efficiency, reduce cost and add value to supply chains.“In meeting the ever changing demands of a testing economic environment,” says Truter “our focus remains on constantly adding value to our clients’ supply chains, driving their competitiveness and positively influencing their relevance in the markets in which they chose to partner with us.”
“Currently working alongside clients in 14 African countries,” Truter expands, “we will continue to offer customised logistics solutions with increased transport fleet capacity and scalability. Critical operational capabilities include dedicated and synergised transport management, a variety of warehousing services, last-mile distribution, supply chain design, facility deployment, synchronised supply, analytics-as-a-service, freight forwarding and clearing- all while providing full visibility via a central logistics and supply chain control towers.”
The logistics control tower represents Managed Solutions’ fundamental approach to managing complex logistics and providesclients a vital birds’eye view of multiple operations across different transport modes, regions and activities. “It would be impossible to optimally manage the vast array of services required without a centralised function to tie them all together. This critical link is the control tower,” enthuses Truter.
Status information from strategic asset owners, suppliers and clients is collected and channelled to the control tower and it will deliver visibility, analytics and reports, monitor key performance indicators and enable timeous, informed decisions and flawless execution.“Our control tower is an operation-wide, data-driven platform which will allow us to solve immediate requirements as they arise and also to craft longer-term strategies to continuously improve as dynamics evolve. This translates into more efficient, innovative and cost effective supply chain solutions for our clients.”
Supply chain control towers continue to advance, enhancing understanding of the drivers of logistics demandand the associated costs. This facilitatesinformed trade-offs between organisational functions – and thus integrated supply chain optimisation. These control towers offer the opportunity to incorporate end-user consumption data (including dispensing of serialised medicines to a specific client or retailers’ grocery point-of-sale data) to ensure maximum agility in the supply chains of the future. With visibility of inventory and capacity at the suppliers’ suppliers, real-time value networks offer a platform for big-data type innovation that will improve availability and remove waste far beyond our current mindsets.
“There is no one-size-fits-all approach to logistics and the Imperial Managed Solutions model enables us to access an infinite array of services, resources, assets and capacity, so that our ability to design and develop solutions customised to our clients’ needs is virtually unlimited.” “Whether a client requires just one logistics service – or a comprehensive, integrated supply chain solution – our approach will be to understand their requirements and then configure the ideal, tailored solution,” Truter concludes.