For more than 110 years Ahlers has been helping clients all over the world. With 650 employees in 3 regions (Europe, CIS, Asia), we provide state-of-the-art logistics and tailor-made solutions.

However far our customers aim to go, we are always right beside them. We envisage to see the world from their perspective and help them identify the best way of organizing their logistics activities. This results in tailor-made, unique solutions to f it our customer’s profile, often going beyond pure logistics. Reducing total go-to-market cost, creating long-term added value. In each activity, using the right resources. That is our objective. Because our creativity and flexibility have no boundaries.

We provide end-to-end sustainable supply chain solutions, offering multi-modal transport options. Globally we facilitate the entire physical and administrative process of intake, storage, handling, customs clearance, and distribution of your goods. We also have 4 warehouses in different regions in Russia with a bonded warehouse in Saint Petersburg.

On top of that Ahlers also focuses on innovation and data analytics. We optimize logistics cost, performance, and sustainability based on smart data. Using innovative technologies, we visualize our customers’ supply network proposing actionable insights and improvement opportunities in a user-friendly way. This helps our customers to make the right investment decision and evaluate improvement scenarios in their own network.

The role of Ahlers in LOGISTAR is three folded:

Work package 1

Ahlers has collected and investigated historical logistics datasets from companies in the chemical sector (P&G, Chemours, Lubrizol, Corbion, BP, Recticel,…) Together with PRESTON, this data was mapped and analysed with regard to actual logistics performance and future freight flow bundling potential with LOGISTAR. Unlike FMCG, these companies have a remarkably high proportion of LTL customer orders which need bundling into FTL’s

Ahlers did this in support of WP1 and more specifically in support of deliverable 1.4 Network data collection, current supply chain network efficiency and collaboration opportunities.

Ahlers had evaluated and determined the potential KPI improvements of the logistic networks of the chemical companies in scope by describing and analysing 6 scenarios:

  1. Individual company analyses
  2. Backhaul opportunities
  3. Co-loading of small deliveries
  4. Use of regional consolidation centres
  5. Logistics clusters
  6. Multi modal opportunities

Any of these scenarios investigates the potential of the industry to achieve KPI improvements and to deploy horizontal collaboration alternatives.

Virtual Living Lab: Backhauling and co-loading in chemical industry

Ahlers started a “Virtual Living Lab” (VLL) for network analytics and optimization which are impossible or too complex to test in LOGISTAR physical Living Labs. In this virtual laboratory the capability of LOGISTAR to identify LTL co-loading and bundling opportunities, the overall speed and performance of the LOGISTAR system and the capability of LOGISTAR to identify roundtrip and continuous loops opportunities will be tested.

The scope of the virtual living labs consists of Shipments from 9 locations in mainland Europe Aubange (BE), Virton (BE), Zeebrugge (BE), Kerkrade (NL), Neunkirchen (DE), Milano (IT), Battipaglia (IT), Terni (IT) and Brindisi (IT). These shipments are deliveries and inter-company movements of 2 shippers in the chemical industry who recently merged in 2019. Both companies are interested to bundle loads, as they serve the same market.

In the period until 30/08/2020 Ahlers has determined the scope and has set up the data streams for this virtual living lab. On a daily basis, order messages of the 2 companies are shared with the LOGISTAR system, so the bundling algorithms can be tested and evaluated.

Strategical assessment has indicated that there is a lot of potential in bundling loads between the companies involved. A strategic project has showed savings between 5-10%. The goal is now to facilitate and plan the horizontal collaboration opportunities using real time planning tools created in LOGISTAR.