TIPS is one of Thailand’s leading port operators with a long history of success and experience in container management. Since its inception in 1991, TIPS has been striving to develop and expand its businesses, and have proven their ability to perpetually keep up with the last 25 years of economic and marketplace challenges. On TIPS’ 25th anniversary, LM had the chance to speak with Mr. Teerapol Shinno, General Manager, Container Depot & Warehouse, who manages TIPS’ container depot facility or TIPS CD1. Mr. Teerapol spoke about the internal business changes within the last 25 years, and discussed the role TIPS is prepared to take on, such as developing its own vehicle stuffing center and tapioca starch stuffing center.
A Humble Start
As TIPS CD1’s General Manager Mr. Teeapol explained, his foremost duty is to look ahead and plan out operational processes, services, and improvement with a focus on overall cost-efficiency for the future to prepare for the rising container depot warehouse competition in the Laem Chabang area. TIPS’ vision in continuing to be the leading container port operator has driven the organization to keep developing and expanding their business. Starting off as a contain port operator, container depot, and exporting warehouse; TIPS has always aspired to be part of its clients’ success by providing the most convenient, quick, and safe services available.
Such services have helped in reducing their importer and exporter clients’ cost, all of whom play a vital role in developing Thailand’s economy. With TIPS’ long standing experience and expertise in container depot and warehousing, the organization is able to provide a promising service to all sectors of clients. Its policies in providing the best service at the most reasonable cost has become the overarching policy that manages TIPS CD1 and its exporting warehouse, as well as the reason why TIPS’ clients have entrusted their business with the organization over the last 25 years.
“I’ve been working with TIPS for 17 years, and I’ve seen many changes within the organization,” said Mr. Teeapol. “TIPS started off as a port operator that offered simple lifting and loading services. As time went by, we could see more business opportunities arise with what we were doing, which was to become a container depot. We also integrated the latest digital management solutions, and efficient and environmental-friendly equipment to the container depot. The last 10 years of the container depot business, along with the expertise our team has earned and our proven business output, has painted a clearer picture of how our business has changed. The biggest change for us is the ability we gained in serving our clients as effectively as other major ports, and our hope to expand TIPS CD1 and warehouse into an export center in the future.”
TIPS CD1 is a container yard of 112,000 square-meters or 13,000 TEUs operational space. Located right outside Laem Chabang Port, the facility caters to both normal and reefer containers with maintenance and repair services and container preparation on-site. “One strength that has led TIPS to more opportunities is TIPS CD1’s service as a warehouse. We are able to cater to our clients’ demands by providing beneficial services for both ocean carrier clients and exporter clients.
Our clients who know TIPS CD1 can introduce their exporter clients to our container service, which comes at a lower rate than others due to our proximity to the stuffing center and port. Our warehouse is also more conveniently located, and we area able to plan a container delivery and pickup time more precisely with our strategic location. With our proximity and convenience, we can help our clients save on their overhead when it come to cargo transportation,” said Mr. Teerapol.
“I’ve seen many businesses in different industries moving towards providing a specialized service. For example, you may now find a specialized hospital or specialized retail stores. TIPS is aiming to do something similar by taking advantage of our accumulated expertise and our major client base, which are the automotive businesses and both major and minor auto exporters.”
However, TIPS’s warehouse is just one step in TIPS’ plan of business development. The current milestone the organization aims to reach is to extend its business to a container export center. Currently TIPS has begun to serve as a Vehicle Stuffing Center, where vehicles and other consumer goods are expertly stuffed and exported via containers. With the continuous growth in the Thai automotive industry, TIPS has decided to emphasize on stuffing and export cars. Mr. Teerapol explained, “I’ve seen many businesses in different industries moving towards providing a specialized service. For example, you may now find a specialized hospital or specialized retail stores. TIPS is aiming to do something similar by taking advantage of our accumulated expertise and our major client base, which are the automotive businesses and both major and minor auto exporters.”
Furthermore, Mr. Teerapol elaborated on how TIPS has prepared its infrastructure and operational standards to precisely match the needs of its automotive clients in both service and safety. “Our warehouse has been designed to fit for vehicle storage. We put emphasis on three main factors; an infrastructure designed for internal and external safety with clearly separated work spaces, expert manpower, and a digital cargo tracking system. All the three factors were designed to meet the respected standards of our clients needs, as vehicle exporters are among our biggest clientele,” said, Mr. Teerapol.
Beyond meeting the infrastructure standard, manpower, and digital tracking system needs; TIPS Warehouse vehicle stuffing service comes with meticulous procedures to ensure its clients of the quality of its service they’ll receive. “Once we’ve received the vehicles, a throughout pre-inspection is carried out on every single vehicle before they can be stuffed into a container. Our drivers are also checked to make sure that each one is fit to work. This means each driver must have a valid driver licence, and because our drivers come into direct contact with vehicles; all of them are to dress properly for work. This means that all drivers are not allowed to wear any article of clothing that contain buttons or sharp edges, as they may cause damage to the vehicles. This is one of the many things we do to meet our automotive clients’ demands. It is a special thing we are willing to do to extend the function of TIPS warehouse to a vehicle stuffing center in the future,” said, Mr. Teerapol.
The reception of this award is something we all take pride in. We’ve been receiving this award for 6 years consecutively, and have been awarded a Gold standard this year. This award reflects the hard work that everyone at TIPS has put into their work.
Another advantage that TIPS warehouse can offer to its automotive clients is the infrastructure that fully shelters vehicles from the environment. Being a container export center means that TIPS supports exporters whose cargo load is smaller or are heading to a destination not catered by major carriers. TIPS can cover both main and minor destinations where major Roll-On Roll-Off (RoRo) ships do not. Additionally, Verified Gross Mass (VGM) and customs clearance services are available.
TIPS is also developing a tapioca starch stuffing center at the same time to cater to another major group of clients. The processes of stuffing a container with tapioca starch takes much precaution and precision with the wide range of types, packaging, cleanliness precautions, and a high risk of damage. All equipment, pre-inspection, warehousing, and stuffing procedures are also made to meet the industry standard to assure TIPS clients that their cargo is in the best hands.
Regardless, TIPS warehouse also gives its clients the freedom to involve a third party logistics provider (3PL) for any procedure they prefer. If a client is seeking a specialized for particular kind of cargo, TIPS will allow 3PL to take over the procedure as the client wishes.
A Longstanding Safety & Development Expert
Aside from being a self-improving expert, TIPS is regarded as an organization who values its development of work place safety standard. This is proven by TIPS’ sixth consecutive reception of the Zero Accident Campaign Award, this time in Gold level, from the Ministry of Labor. This year is the sixth consecutive time TIPS has been awarded this particular award, which means that TIPS has been operating safely without an accident that causes a personnel to take a sick leave for 6 years in a row. Mr. Teerapol said, “The reception of this award is something we all take pride in. We’ve been receiving this award for 6 years consecutively, and have been awarded a Gold standard this year. This award reflects the hard work that everyone at TIPS has put into their work.” In addition to this award, TIPS has received many other safety-related award, such as the National Occupational Safety and Health Award 2016 for the seventh consecutive year and the Princess Maha Jakri Sinrindhon’s Safe Industrial Workplace Environment Project Certification.