Canadian transportation and logistics leader, Pinnacle Logistics Solutions (Pinnacle), recently chartered a vessel for its client that made possible the transportation of 8,000 metric tons of steel from Bilbao, Spain, into the North American Great Lakes – eventually traveling west on the St. Lawrence Seaway into Lake Ontario, and discharging at the port of Hamilton, ON.
According to Pinnacle leadership, the project – which traversed 3,429 nautical miles between ports across approximately 12 days – served as a case study of sorts examining the benefits that emerge when companies take control of their supply chain, versus suppliers maintaining control of it.
“This is a conversation we have regularly with our clients,” said Aaron Gerber, principal and vice president of sales at Pinnacle. “You want to be in the driver’s seat as it pertains to your supply. You don’t want that to be the burden of your vendors.”
Gerber indicated that companies should invest in supply chain control for two reasons. “For one, you’re paying a management cost for someone else to manage, and control, your freight – often to their benefit, not yours. And the second reason is flexibility. No one is as motivated to respond to your business drivers as you are. Whether we’re talking about timing, risk factors, commercial factors – what’s the best way to get this done affordably and efficiently? Those aren’t the kinds of things that suppliers are motivated to resolve in the best interests of the client.”
Gerber noted that in situations where Pinnacle has compelled its clients to make that switch, those clients now view that critical decision as a strategic advantage for them – and they wouldn’t go back. “In the case of this project,” he added, “a universe of possibilities has opened up for the client. Vendors that were previously not available are now available to this client. Trade lanes that were previously not being explored are now being explored.”