Letter from the board of management
Vos Logistics benefited from the improved market conditions throughout Europe. In 2017 turnover grew by 5% and EBIT by 17%, results improved at both International Transport and Solutions. 2017 was also a year in which we invested in continuous improvement programs to make our organization better and smarter. And we defined our client value proposition to show what we believe in and stand for.
Route to a future-proof business
Our company has undergone a sweeping transformation in recent years and has made the transition to a provider of international transport, transport services and logistics solutions:
- The core activities are now organized into two divisions: International Transport and Solutions.
- We have transferred our international transport operations to Cluj-Napoca in Romania.
- Significant investments have been made to tailor our value proposition in international transport to customer demand in automotive, consumer goods, electronics, e-commerce and other market segments that require fast, flexible and reliable services.
- We have invested a great deal in renewing equipment, digitization and staff training.
- We gained market share in Solutions, due to growth at existing customers and to new business in storage, distribution, specialized transport and freight management. Thanks to the dedication and commitment of our teams, we were able to cater for these services.
Sustainability remains an integral part of our operations. The growing focus of shippers on sustainable solutions confirms that we have chosen the right direction. The positive feedback we receive from our stakeholders for our sustainable initiatives are rewarding for our staff.
We have created a solid organization with a history of nearly 74 years. We are now preparing for a new phase. Logistics processes are growing more complex. With the whirlwind changes in our customers’ demanding markets, logistics is a key enabler for business success. Our challenge is to make them faster, simpler and smarter for the benefit of our customers. And that process begins with ourselves. To reduce complexity for our customers, we first need to simplify our own working practices. By applying the Lean program we can simplify the complexity of our business processes and make them more efficient. Change processes must be welcomed by our employees and inspire them to make a success of innovations and improvements. But agile working practices and attitudes must also be technically feasible.
Digitization is another factor in this process. It increases the organization’s efficiency when sharing information with our drivers and customers. The e-CMR app rolled out in 2017, for instance, enables drivers and charters to scan and transmit the CMR confirmation of delivery to LOVOS immediately after goods are unloaded. Customers can therefore receive even faster proof that we have delivered their goods punctually and correctly. The app increases efficiency and enables faster invoicing. Advanced Planning & Scheduling, moreover, will help our systems optimize planning. We will continue on this route in the year ahead.
Promise to the market -
We simplify. Whatever it takes.
We are preparing for a future in which expectations continue to rise and, with all the advances in technology, more and more is expected from logistics. We offer solutions to complex challenges. We believe in making things simple, transparent and efficient. And by “simple”, we mean comprehensible, clearcut, manageable and efficient, regardless of the complexity involved in actually implementing such solutions. This is the philosophy behind our mission statement - We simplify. Whatever it takes. - we introduced to the market at the beginning of this year. It is how we will make a difference for our customers.
We are looking forward to 2018 with confidence. We are on the right track and will continue our route towards further profitable, sustainable growth. Attracting the right talent will be a challenge in view of the growing scarcity on the labor market.
Another concern is overregulation within the Eurozone. Experience in recent years has shown that regulations are often based on national interests rather than industry practice or the welfare of employees and drivers in particular. We want international transport regulations in Europe to make a practicable contribution to road safety, driver welfare and clean and efficient transport solutions. We are grateful for the support of all the parties we are working with to consolidate our position: our customers, staff, partners and suppliers. We would like to thank them for their trust.
Frank Verhoeven - Ben Vos
Board of management of Vos Logistics