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Performance-inspired thinking, during space-disruptive times

A leading exhaust technology company was committed to supplying their customers, even when shipping by sea was difficult.

Customer:

A multinational manufacturer of climate control systems

Industry:

Automotive

Solution:

Providing a reliable mode of transport for exhaust technology, vehicle heaters, and air-conditioning systems during an exacerbated disrupted sea logistics market.


Results:

  • Keep cargo moving by sea during with worst space crisis this century and find extra space in the air market

  • Avoid flying complete sea freight containers

  • Successful collaboration, constant communication, and dedication between the Global Key Accounts and Excellence Management teams


When we think of cleaner vehicle energies, we usually think of electric cars. But until that transition is complete, exhaust technology is key. Our customer, a pioneer in the automotive industry, makes an active contribution to more environmentally protective products, more safety, and more comfort in road traffic. With their just-in-time delivery to the assembly line, Kuehne+Nagel provided support to ensure products reached the carmakers safely and on time.

At the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, the company experienced an increase in demand for their exhaust products, which was contrary to the expected decrease. People still wanted to travel in North America and, with the airline routes reduced, SUV sales increased. Joe Taurasi, Kuehne+Nagel Canada’s Head of Key Account Program, explains: 

“In general, 2020 was an uncertain time for the global logistics industry with delays and congestion at ports and airports. On top of that, the customer had recently moved their sister supplier plant to Poland, adding more challenges to production. When the customer reached out to us for a solution, I went straight to our air logistics team who manage situations like this all the time. I knew they could find a better option. In October 2020, we implemented a Poland to Canada route via Frankfurt that the customer has been using to optimize their supply chain speed, reliability and sustainability.”

Joe enlisted the Key Account Program and the Excellence Management teams to keep working on continuous improvement strategies with the customer. These collaborations not only create success, but also make us anticipate and overcome potential challenges.

That became a reality after the sea market disruption grew in 2021. The customer now faced challenges from Europe: container shortages, lack of space on vessels, and an unexpected canal blockage. Our automotive key account team needed a new course of action and looked immediately to our sea logistics colleagues—they could guarantee shipments through our LCL service.

After adjusting the customer’s lead-times, we kept their air requirements low, and their supply chain running at full steam.