According to the company, the Transportation Solutions Group (TSG) will focus on three areas. The first is the provision of “specialised and niche” transport services such as intermodal, full truckload (FTL) and less-than-truckload (LTL) brokerage. The company will also provide handling services including cargo consolidation/deconsolidation, cross-docking and transloading, value-added handling, forward inventory positioning and customs brokerage. TSG will also provide a range of transport management services.
Kyosuke Noguchi has been named as vice-president and general manager of the new group. Noguchi has worked in the transport division at Yusen Logistics (Americas) since 2011 and was most recently vice-president of contract logistics.
Noguchi told Automotive Logistics that previously, such services were handled by different parts of Yusen Logistics but combining them under the TSG umbrella would provide customers with “a seamless process” for transporting goods across the modes it offered.
“In terms of our automotive business, the TSG will enhance our cross-border services by leveraging existing operations in Laredo, one of the busiest inland ports in the US, and our team of experts located in Mexico,” Noguchi explained. “The team will improve our ease of doing business and, more importantly for our customer, ease of crossing the border.”
Asked whether the establishment of TSG indicated confidence in continued automotive parts shipments between Mexico and the US in the wake of the US Trump administration’s threats of a punitive border tax on parts imports, Noguchi was positive.
“The automotive industry is an important vertical for Yusen Logistics and we will continue to expand our services and network to accommodate anticipated growth in the market,” he said.
Pointing to the Bajio logistics centre that opened earlier this year as another example of Yusen’s commitment to the automotive industry, Noguchi said it was centered on the growing automotive sector in Mexico.
“Establishing the TSG serves to complement our capabilities by connecting our customers throughout the US and Mexico,” he added.
Yusen Logistics’ Americas division said it would collaborate with the wider group’s global network to connect services and focus on key markets, including automotive parts shipments.
“Based on a mission of collaboration and partnership, the TSG will enable Yusen Logistics to deliver comprehensive services and drive innovation,” said Kunihiko (Ken) Miyoshi, president and CEO of Yusen Logistics (Americas).
While the company could not comment at this point on the throughput TSG would handle, Noguchi said it was a market segment that was growing and “extremely attractive” to its broader business strategy.
“We will leverage our existing customer relationships as well as our deep knowledge and history in the automotive segment to grow and expand this area into the foreseeable future,” he said.
As part of the new service offering, the company said it would be focusing on value-added warehouse services from its facilities in Charlotte (North Carolina) and Laredo (Texas).
“Both facilities offer cargo handling solutions such as cross-docking, merge-in-transit and freight consolidation,” confirmed Noguchi.
The Charlotte warehouse has two rail docks and offers transloading services between rail car and truck. Laredo, meanwhile, also offers customs house brokerage and a free trade zone, and is well positioned to support the automotive and manufacturing sectors, providing additional services such as kitting and sequencing.
Contract Logistics Group
In related news, Yusen Logistics (Americas) has renamed its warehouse division in the region as the Contract Logistics Group.
Yusen’s warehouse network in the US comprises of 14 facilities covering over 196,000 sq.m in total. Services include IT-supported reverse logistics, order fulfilment and distribution, transloading, yard management, cross-docking and drayage management.
“The new name reflects the growing variety and scope of services that we provide to our customers,” said Gerald Hofmann, senior vice-president and general manager of the Contract Logistics Group. “We are expanding our capabilities to provide customised integrated solutions and deepen client relationships.”