With a strong commitment to develop Thailand’s logistics industry and ambitious goal to support customers across the region, as well as their firm trust in Thailand’s growing economy, Yusen Logistics is investing heavily to build, and open new warehouses located in a strategic area on Bangna – Trad Road. Their newest warehouse is equipped with state-of-the-art technologies and designed-to-use layout for better efficiency, quality and safety.
Yusen Logistics’ new warehouses were built under the ‘YLTH Bangna Core Project’ which commenced construction in September 2017. The warehouses were designed to better emphasize space capacities, safer and more effective operations with the installation of modern technologies to increase benefits to customers, the company and operational staff.
The construction for Yusen Logistics’ new warehouses were divided into two phases. The first phase covers a new 14,000 square meter warehouse which already completed construction in June 2018 and began operations in July of this year. The second phase is expected to be completed and launched in early 2019 and has total area of 10,000 square meters.
We spoke with Mr. Pimarn Nualhong, Executive Officer, Warehouse Operation Unit and Mr. Masahiko Hirakawa, Vice President at Yusen Logistics (Thailand) for more details about their investment, the operations, and the state-of-the-art technologies being deployed in the newly built warehouses.
Investing in the Future
Yusen Logistics’ decision to invest in a new THB 600 million warehouse project emphasizes their trust in Thailand’s growing economy. It also highlights the company’s ambition to provide customers with globally trusted, quality warehouse and logistics services.
Mr. Hirakawa said, “We decided to invest and build our own warehouses because we have strong confidence in Thailand’s economy. The investment will also help us to be more cost-effective in the long-term. Moreover, we can better ensure that the new warehouses can meet our strategic plans to increase speed and efficiency, improve quality and safety, and reduce overall logistics costs for customers at the same time.”
Yusen Logistics designed and developed both warehouses using their strong experiences in warehouse and logistic business along with the company’s strategy and future plans. Understanding the clear specifications of what they needed in these new warehouses truly helped them in planning and making decisions; helping them build warehouses that meet all their requirements for loading/unloading, picking, moving and storing of cargo.
Mr. Nualhong explained how the project began, “We originally had a 30-year-old warehouse located here. We decided to tear it down and started to plan for a new one, due to our needs outgrowing what the original warehouse was designed to handle. It served us well, but it was time to build for our current and future needs. We implemented our know-how to develop these warehouses to the exact specs we need for our operational solutions to meet all the warehouse management and service needs of our customers. Furthermore, Yusen Logistics also clearly foresees our own business direction, that’s why we chose to invest in state-of-the-art warehouse technologies like VNA forklifts, Mezzanine Floor System, and temperature-controlled rooms.”
Very Narrow Isle (VNA) forklifts are one of the key technologies which Yusen Logistics choose to install in the new warehouse, in order to increase operational speed, safety and efficiency. Mr. Nualhong said “Even though VNA forklifts are very useful for warehouse operations, there’s still only a few companies in Thailand that have implemented this technology in their warehouses. The reason being that implementing VNA forklifts can be expensive and requires a complicated instillation process. You must plan to use this equipment even before beginning warehouse construction, since the floor specifications are required to be super-flat. Underneath the super-flat floor, this technology uses wire guidance, which will then send signals to the forklift to guide its direction and control its operations. However, even if though it sounds quite complicated during the planning and construction, once the installation is completed and operations begin, VNA forklifts can truly help increase operational efficiency and safety. It’s especially worth it for pallet-in, pallet-out handling methods of manufacturing cargo which are usually brought in and out in big volumes. While the productivity can often double, operators don’t have to worry about forklifts slipping away and hitting shelves or racks during operations too.”
Better Space Utilization
Apart of increasing productivity and safety in the warehouse, implementing VNA forklifts also allows Yusen Logistics to be able to better utilize their space. The technology requires gangways between the shelves that are only 1.8 meters wide compared to conventional lift trucks operations which require 3.5 meters gangway.
Moreover, Yusen Logistics also installed a Mezzanine Floor System inside their warehouses. Mezzanine Floor Systems feature additional floor layouts, which allow companies the ability to utilize more space inside the warehouse. With the Mezzanine Floor System, warehouse staff can walk around and pick up cargo piece-by-piece as if they were going shopping. This type of warehouse is being used to support customers in retail and e-Commerce sectors which are likely to bring in cargo in big volumes, and bring out by small packages or pieces, depending on the order from buyers or end-users.
“Installing a Mezzanine Floor System in the warehouse not only help us to better utilize warehouse space, it also provides safer operations to our staff,” said Mr. Hirakawa. “Since forklift aren’t allowed to get in to this area, our staff don’t need to worry about forklift accidents or having to stop and wait for the forklift to finish their operations before resuming to pick cargo on shelves. In our warehouse we choose to store electronic device and spare parts, as well as fashion products because these valuable cargoes also need to be kept in certain temperature range to ensure cargo quality at all times.”
Yusen Logistics has also invested in temperature-controlled rooms equipped with modern cooling systems, and high-quality wall materials to make sure that the cold will not leak out or let heat in. The temperature-controlled room is also fitted with company’s own generator to ensure that customer’s high-value cargo, such as electronic devices, spare parts and fashion products will always be in the safest conditions possible under their best protection.
Offering More Convenience
Yusen Logistics not only invests in high-quality infrastructure and state-of-the-art technologies, they also provide bonded-warehouses to facilitate and offer better support to their customers inside the newly operated phase-one warehouse. That means the new warehouse consists of both a general warehouse and bonded areas, which are outstanding services offered to their customers.
“Normally, general and bonded warehouses have operations separately in different areas, but now we can offer both types of warehouse services under the same roof. This is very convenient and beneficial to our customers, especially those who import cargo from various origins to combine these small lots of cargo into one big shipment, then export to the destination. By having a bonded area in the warehouse, it also enables customers to be able to do customs clearance and importing processes more conveniently if they want to sell some of their products domestically. It could also help eliminate or shorten transferring processes between the two warehouses, which results in lower overall logistics cost,” Mr. Nualhong said.
In addition to the aforementioned benefits, the warehouses strategic location at Bangna-Trad road also offers better connection to major gateways in Thailand. Customers can connect between the warehouse and main industrial parks, Laem Chabang Port, Suvarnabhumi Airport, and central Bangkok area very easily. Therefore, Yusen Logistics’ new warehouses can be the missing fulfillment puzzle piece for all customers in every sector, especially for manufacturing, import-export, retail and e-Commerce businesses.
Moreover, Yusen Logistics investment into this warehouse project not only targets to support customer growth, but also aims to support the Governments ongoing projects, such as the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) and Thailand’s economy as a whole. This warehouse project confirms and reflects Yusen Logistics’ long-term commitment to Thailand and the development of logistics industry in the country.