Thanks to (SAVVY) telematics: more efficient and safe chemical products shipment

AnQore, a chemical supplier, adopts SAVVY® Telematic Systems solution

AnQore plant
(PresseBox) ( Schaffhausen, )
While most truck fleets are already equipped with telematic technology, this has continued to be the exception for rail and ship transports. For this reason, industrial companies often do not know where and in what condition their goods are at a given point in time. AnQore BV, a Dutch manufacturer of specialized chemical products and headquartered near Maastricht, in Urmond, wanted to change this situation. AnQore is one of the first companies in the sector to adopt an integrated telematics system for all of its several hundred tank containers and tank wagons. By adopting the SAVVY Telematic Systems solution, AnQore has optimized both fleet efficiency and shipment safety.

The chemical company attaches great importance to delivering its products – e.g. liquid acrylonitrile and acetonitrile – in time, on time, and safely to its customers. This includes being in a position to provide customers with accurate information, for example when customers inquire about the status of their shipment. Moreover, good information about equipment location and expected arrival time is needed when shipments are returning to the AnQore plant. “Our customers have a few days' buffer to unload the tank containers and wagons and ship them back”, explains Peter Kehrens, Logistics Purchasing & Implementation Manager at AnQore.

In the past we were only able to roughly estimate when the containers would arrive at our plant. That's why it became clear that in order to allow our fleet to operate at optimum capacity, we would need a better overview. Modern sensory technology opens up a whole new realm of possibilities. For example, shipments can be monitored in real-time and processes can be coordinated with customers and logistics partners more efficiently. So we went out to look for a telematics system. We found SAVVY Telematic Systems, a supplier that suits us well.” - Peter Kehrens, Logistics Purchasing & Implementation Manager at AnQore

User-friendly cloud platform
The chemical specialist supplier has installed an ATEX and IECEx certified SAVVY CargoTracExR telematic device in each of its tank containers and tank wagons. These small boxes, which can be installed in a few easy steps, contain robust and reliable high-tech electronics. In addition to sensors for location purposes and to measure a range of variables, they contain a long-lasting battery and a module for data communication. The latter sends encrypted data via the mobile network to the SAVVY® Synergy Enterprise platform. The private cloud platform is connected to AnQore's SAP system via an interface. The corresponding plan data for each new order – departure time, stops along the route etc – are transmitted automatically from the SAP-System to the SAVVY Synergy Portal. Using their account, employees log into SAVVY® Synergy Enterprise. There, they can check the status of all transports in real-time and can have them displayed on a map overview to see where a particular shipment is located at that particular moment.

Comprehensive control over the supply process
In case the incoming telematic data should for once differ from the plan data, the SAVVY Portal sends an alarm notification per email. This way, AnQore employees know immediately that something is wrong with one of the shipments – either a delay or safety-related event, such as for example a strong shock that could damage a tank container. This enables logistics planners and customer service representatives to immediately take action.

“An exceptional situation during the implementation phase clearly demonstrated the advantages the new system gives us,” reports Peter Kehrens. “In spite of week-long strikes in France from November 2019 to January 2020, we were able to maintain an accurate and up-to-date overview of our fleet. This put us in a position to continuously keep our customers informed and supply them with goods, where other suppliers could not.”

Efficient fleet planning
In addition to improved customer service, the solution makes it possible to make the best use of fleet capacity, thereby reducing costs. Due to the fact that the plant where AnQore produces its liquid goods cannot be stopped easily, it is necessary to have enough containers and wagons to fill on site. At the same time, it is important to avoid having empty wagons and containers on site for a long time. Both targets can now be met more easily by using telematic data. Logistics planners can react quickly to short-term fluctuations in fleet planning and take measures in the mid-term to continuously optimize processes. Since AnQore always notifies customers of the exact arrival time, the customer can also make more precise plans and unload the shipment more quickly. Once the customer sends the tank wagons on their return route, SAVVY's software calculates when they will arrive at the AnQore plant. This makes smooth just-in-time production possible for the customer as well as AnQore.

Increased safety for hazardous goods shipments
Because AnQore's chemical products are hazardous goods, shipment safety is also a very important consideration. SAVVY Telematic Systems telematic devices are certified both in accordance with the IECEx international standards and the ATEX European standards and approved for all hazardous zones.

“It is our vision and goal to be the most reliable and safest supplier in our competitive environment. Sensors enable us to track shipments with precision. And this makes it possible to proactively monitor our adherence to local, and future regulations, as well as to EU laws applying to the shipment of hazardous goods such as for example the Basic Network (Basisnet) in the Netherlands”, says Peter Kehrens.

To ensure safe shipments, the tank containers have to be in perfect technical condition, something that AnQore previously checked every six months. This process can also be improved with telematics. Since the sensors measure service performance accurately, it is possible to provide condition-based maintenance, in other words, check-up dates are planned in accordance with the tank container's and/or its chassis ' actual kilometreage, instead of according to a rigid schedule. A wagon operating to capacity will require maintenance earlier than a wagon operating at less than full capacity. This is both a safety and efficiency advantage.

Continuing to tap the full potential
As a result of the completed roll-out in March 2020, all sales and customer service representatives are now using the SAVVY® Synergy Enterprise portal. The next step for the chemical company will be to get long-standing customers on board: selected customers will obtain their own access to the SAVVY Portal. This means they will constantly have an overview of their orders; at the same time this will decrease AnQore's customer support service workload.

“It is a lot of fun to continue to tap the potential of the solution”, says Peter Kehrens. “From the start, SAVVY Telematic Systems has proven to be an excellent choice. Both hardware and software fully meet our expectations, and we are very happy with the support SAVVY has provided. SAVVY fully understands our specific needs, has advised us accordingly and adjusted the platform as we have envisioned it. This has enabled us to take a big step towards digitizing and automating our logistics processes.”

Aida Kaeser, CEO SAVVY Telematic Systems AG: “After all these years of working together, we have come to know and appreciate AnQore as a very innovative and highly professional company. All the more reason for us – as AnQore's exclusive partner- to be happy to support AnQore with the implementation of its digitalization strategy. We will also continue to put all our efforts into jointly maintaining our lead on the market through innovation.”
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