May 17, 2020

Freight rail volumes increase for Union Pacific

Supply Chain Digital
Freight rail
U.S. Freight Rail
Freddie Pierce
2 min
Thanks largely to rate increases, Union Pacific’s third quarter revenues increase by 16 percent
CSX Transportation wasnt the only freight rail provider that posted strong third quarter numbers this week. Union Pacific, which operates the largest r...

CSX Transportation wasn’t the only freight rail provider that posted strong third quarter numbers this week.

Union Pacific, which operates the largest railroad network in the United States, saw its third quarter revenue rise to $5.1 billion, a 16 percent increase that’s being attributed mostly to rate increases. Company stock rose 4.6 percent as well yesterday, marking the most significant intraday gain since July of last year.

The outlook for shipping companies is always a little depressing in a recovering economy, but Union Pacific CEO Jim Young is happy with the performance.


“While the economic outlook is uncertain, we’re optimistic about the future for Union Pacific,” Young said in a statement.

Profit increased to $904 million for $1.85 a share, which topped the $1.81 average 25 analysts predicted in a Bloomberg survey. Last year, Union Pacific reported third-quarter earnings of $778 million.


CSX Q3 freight rail growth in line with projections

Union Pacific CEO doesn’t expect double-dip recession

Check out October’s issue of Supply Chain Digital!

The company’s Class 1 railroads, which are the biggest in North America in terms of sales and led by Union Pacific, saw carloads increase by 1.3 percent in the third quarter, meaning shippers transported more goods. That’s good news for the economy, as freight traffic is seen as an economic bellwether of sorts.

Auto deliveries increased by 10 percent, while total intermodal carloads dropped.

Based in Omaha, Neb., Union Pacific operates freight rail and passenger lines throughout most of the middle of the United States. The company has reached its position as the largest railroad network in the country thanks in large part to purchases of Missouri Pacific, Chicago and North Western Pacific, Missouri-Kansas-Texas and the Southern Pacific rail lines.

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Jun 8, 2021

DHL Claim Multi-Sector Collaboration Key to Fighting COVID

3 min
Global logistics leader DHL’s new white paper highlights what supply chain professionals have learned one year into the pandemic

Since January, global logistics leader DHL has distributed more than 200 million doses of the COVID vaccine to 120+ countries around the globe. While the US and UK recently rolled out immunisation plans to most citizens, countries with less developed infrastructure still desperately need more doses. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which currently has one of the highest per-capita immunisation rates, the government set up storage facilities to cover domestic and international demand. But storage, as we’ve learned, is little help if you can’t transport the goods.


This is where logistics leaders such as DHL make their impact. The company built over 50 new partnerships, bilateral and multilateral, to collaborate with pharmaceutical and private sector firms. With more than 350 DHL centres pressed into service, the group operated 9,000+ flights to ship the vaccine where it needed to go. 


Public-Private Partnerships

With new pandemic knowledge, DHL just released its “Revisiting Pandemic Resilience” white paper, which examined the role of logistics and supply chain companies in handling COVID-19. As Thomas Ellman, Head of Clinical Trials Logistics at DHL, said: “The past one year has highlighted the importance of logistics and supply chain management to manage the pandemic, ensure business continuity and protect public health. It has also shown us that together we are stronger”. 


Multisector partnerships, DHL said, enabled rapid, effective vaccine distribution. While international scientists developed a vaccine in record time—five times faster than any other vaccine in history—manufacturers ramped up production and logistics teams rolled out distribution three times faster than expected. When commercial routes faced backups, logistics operators worked with military officers to transport vaccines via helicopters and boats. 


In the UAE, the public-private HOPE Consortium distributed billions of COVID-19 doses to its civilians as well as other countries in need by partnering with commercial organisations such as DHL. For the first time, apropo for an unprecedented pandemic, logistics companies made strong connections with public health and government.


“While the race against the virus continues, leveraging the power of such collaborations and data analytics will be key”, said Katja Busch, Chief Commercial Officer DHL and Head of DHL Customer Solutions & Innovation. “We need to remain prepared for high patient and vaccine volumes, maintain logistics infrastructure and capacity, while planning for seasonal fluctuations by providing a stable and well-equipped platform for the years to come”. 


How Do We Sustain Immunisation? 

By the end of 2021, experts estimate that we need approximately 10 billion doses of vaccines—many of which will be shipped to areas of the world, such as India, South Africa, and Brazil, that lack significant infrastructure. This is perhaps the greatest divide between countries that have rolled out successful immunisation programmes and those that have not. As Busch noted, “the UAE’s significant investments in creating robust air, sea, and land infrastructure facilitated logistics and vaccine distribution, helping us keep supply chains resilient”. 


Neither is the novel coronavirus a one-time affair. If predictions hold, COVID will be similar to seasonal colds or the flu: here to stay. When fall comes around each year, governments will need to vaccinate the world as quickly as possible to ensure long-term immunisation against the virus. This time, logistics companies must be better prepared. 

Yet global immunisation, year after year, is no small order. To keep reinfection rates low and slow the spread of COVID, governments will likely need 7-9 billion annual doses of the vaccine to meet that mark. And if DHL’s white paper is any judge of success, multi-sector supply chain partnerships will set the gold standard.

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