Sohar Port enjoys big rise in container traffic and signs new contracts
Sohar Port signed a leased contract with Sohar Flour Mills on Wednesday 28 January 2015, ahead of the planned construction of a new flour mill with a capacity of 500 tonnes per day. The signing took place at the Sohar Port and Freezone annual business reception which drew participation from public and private sector dignitaries and representatives from key diplomatic missions based in Muscat.
Contracts were signed and exchanged by Sultan bin Salim Al Habsi, Chairman of Sohar Port and Freezone, and Khamis bin Abdullah Al Farsi, Chairman of Atyab Investments.
A second contract was signed with Centre Point Logistics (CPL), who will take up the option of a plot at Sohar Freezone for the expansion of its logistics, warehousing, and storage facilities. Contracts were signed and exchanged by HE Sultan bin Salim Al Habsi, Chairman of SOHAR Port and Freezone, and Mr. Saleh Said Lootah, Chairman of CPL Dubai.
Centre Point Logistics represent one of the leading companies in the logistics and industrial sector from their main office in Jafza, Dubai.
Sohar Port and Freezone has revealed throughput figures for 2014 at a press conference held before its annual business reception at the Chedi Hotel in Muscat. Speaking at the conference, CEO Andre Toet said that container throughput grew 58 percent, with cars and break bulk also performing well.
The rise in container traffic can be attributed to the relocation of commercial traffic from Muscat. Break bulk cargo increased by 51 percent, while the number of cars handled by SOHAR grew 99 percent, to 122,000. This followed a deal to create a regional distribution hub, and together with existing throughput, this figure will grow to 200,000.
The reception also provided the backdrop for the launch of the 2015 Sohar Annual Magazine.
For more information on the Sohar Port in Oman, please visit: http://www.soharportandfreezone.com/en/media/news-events/1110117
Pandora and IBM digitise jewellery supply chain
Pandora has overhauled its global supply chain in partnership with IBM amid an ecommerce sales boom for its hand-finished jewellery.
The company found international success offering customisable charm bracelets and other personalised jewellery though its chain of bricks and mortar retail destinations. But in 2020, as the COVID-19 outbreak forced physical stores to close, Pandora strengthened its omnichannel operations and doubled online sales.
A focus on customer experience included deploying IBM’s Sterling Order Management, increasing supply chain resiliency and safeguarding against disruption across the global value chain.
Pandora leverages IBM Sterling Order Management as the backbone it its omnichannel fulfilment, with Salesforce Commerce Cloud powering its ecommerce. Greater automation across its channels has boosted the jeweller’s sustainability credentials, IBM said, streamlining processes for more efficient delivery. It has also given in-store staff and virtual customer service representatives superior end-to-end visibility to better meet consumer needs.
Jim Cruickshank, VP of Digital Development & Retail Technology, Pandora, said the digital transformation journey has brought “digital and store technology closer together and closer to the customer”, highlighting how important the customer journey remains, even during unprecedented disruption.
"Our mission is about creating a personal experience and we've instituted massive platform changes with IBM Sterling and Salesforce to enable new digital-first capabilities that are much more individualised, localised and connected across channels and markets,” he added.
Pandora’s pivot to digital
The pandemic forced the doors closed at most of Pandora’s 2,700 retail locations. To remain competitive, it pivoted to online retail. Virtual queuing for stores and virtual product trials via augmented reality (AR) technology went someway to emulating the in-store experience and retail theatre that is the brand’s hallmark. Meanwhile digital investments in supply chain efficiency was central to delivering on consumer demand.
“Consumer behaviour has significantly shifted and will continue to evolve with businesses needing to quickly adapt to new preferences and needs,” said Kareem Yusuf, General Manager, AI Applications and Blockchain, IBM. “To address this shift, leading retailers like Pandora rely on innovation to increase their business agility by enabling and scaling sustainable supply chain operations using AI and cloud.”
Yusuf said Pandora’s success was indicative of how to remain competitive by “finding new ways to create differentiated customer experiences that protect their enterprises from disruptions to help mitigate risk and accelerate growth”.