May 17, 2020

Supply Chain entrepreneur launches Baxter Freight

Ian Baxter
Baxter Freight
rh freight
Keuhne + Nagel
Freddie Pierce
2 min
Ian Baxter, pictured
Supply Chain entrepreneur Ian Baxter has founded Baxter Freight, a new type of freight logistics business bringing a fresh approach to the industry. Ba...

Supply Chain entrepreneur Ian Baxter has founded Baxter Freight, a new type of freight logistics business bringing a fresh approach to the industry.

Baxter built up and successfully ran RH Freight as Managing Director and co-owner from 1995 until its sale in 2011 to Kuehne & Nagel, for more than £60million. Now he has returned to the industry after spending some time away from business, and is looking to rapidly expand Baxter Freight.

He said: “Starting a new company in a traditional industry is a huge challenge but we are determined to follow our instinct by prioritising a progressive working environment to complement our comprehensive service offering.

“The signs are good and we are developing a market position  that employees and clients buy into but we have only just started out on the journey – many challenges and successes are still to come. That’s what is so exciting about this great challenger business”

Company origins

The idea for Baxter Freight originated in April 2013, when Ian spoke to Peter Isler and Steve Rafferty, who had been Sales Director and Finance Director respectively at RH Freight, about embarking on a new venture together.

They recognised some companies were not always well catered for by the freight industry. They felt customers wanted a single point of contact with a one stop shop capable of addressing all their logistics needs, whether domestic, European or international, whether for full loads, groupage shipments, pallets or parcels. They would reach these customers by creating a large customer relationship management team based in one central location. They would serve them by partnering with the best companies from across the market place.

With the company’s offering decided Baxter Freight was established with Ian, Peter and Steve as shareholders and directors. After less than two months of active sales, the company has already won 125 clients with further exciting partnerships in the pipeline.

Baxter Freight’s targets are ambitious but the management team’s track record for commercial development is proven. In particular, they oversaw growth from an annual turnover of £35m to £135m in 15 years at RH Freight, in which time Ian introduced an entirely new management style and a leadership team that transformed the trajectory of the company. RH Freight became a thoroughly modern operation, with a product offering of 32 daily services and a team of 140 account managers handling customer relationships.

Baxter Freight factfile


Members of staff:40 as at 1 April 2014 but planning 100 by mid-2015.

Growth targets:£100m turnover by 2017.

Ethos:Baxter says the business is based on building trust and long term relationships. For more information, visit:

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Jun 24, 2021

Kuehne+Nagel cuts carbon footprint by 70% for Honda China

2 min
Road-to-rail logistics solution will reduce carbon emissions at the automaker by 70%, stripping 16,000 tonnes of CO2 from its supply chain

Around 16,000 tonnes of CO2 has been cut from supply chain of Honda's China-based manufacturing division through a road-to-rail transformation in partnership with logistics leader Kuehne+Nagel

The programme was developed through KN Sincero, the joint venture between Swiss headquartered Kuehne+Nagel and Chinese automotive logistics firm Sincero, established in 2018. 

KN Sincero worked with Honda China to develop an integrated solution to convert much of its domestic long-haul trucking to train lines, using regional hubs to improve supply chain performance and further reduce carbon emissions. The programme delivered consolidations as well as value-added services, including sorting, scanning, repackaging, GPS track and trace, and recyclable container management. 

"Kuehne+Nagel has always been a supply chain partner that we can rely on, to help us improve our supply chain performance whilst also achieving our environmental goals,” said Mr. Jiang Hui and Mr. Takuji Kitamura, Joint General Manager of Wuhan Dong Hon, the logistics affiliate of Dongfong Honda Automotive. 

After six months of shifting to the road-to-rail model, new supply chain reliability and efficiencies are expected too trip 16,000 tonnes of carbon emissions annually. The carbon savings represent an enormous 70% reduction in total. 

"Automotive is one of the most important sectors in contract logistics, particularly in China, the world’s largest automotive market,” added Gianfranco Sgro, member of the Management Board of Kuehne + Nagel International AG, responsible for Contract Logistics. “I am glad that Kuehne+Nagel and Honda share a common vision of service, innovation and sustainability.”

Kuehne+Nagel’s Net Zero Carbon programme 

Kuehne+Nagel announced its Net Zero Carbon programme in 2019 with a dual purpose to reduce CO2 output in its own logistics operations, as well as partnering with organisations to minimise their own impact on the planet. Kuehne+Nagel reached carbon neutrality globally in 2020 throughout its own, direct emissions, and is now focused on developing its capabilities to serve partners. 

Dr. Detlef Trefzger, Chief Executive Officer of Kuehne+Nagel International AG, said the programme is “a package of measures to fight CO2 emissions and provide sustainable and innovative supply chain solutions – hand in hand with our suppliers and customers”. 

As part of the initiative, Kuehne+Nagel established its own nature projects in Myanmar and New Zealand, and invested in ‘nature-based’ carbon dioxide compensation projects to strip harmful emissions from the environment. It is committed to being CO2 neutral for shipments in its network of transport suppliers by 2030. 

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