May 17, 2020

Multi-location distribution may solve supply challenges

London Gateway
DP World
BNP Paribas
Jones Lang LaSalle
Freddie Pierce
3 min
London Gateway visulisation
Companies will increasingly need to be more agile and flexible in designing their distribution networks, according to expert speakers at commercial pr...


Companies will increasingly need to be more agile and flexible in designing their distribution networks, according to expert speakers at commercial property adviser Jones Lang LaSalle’s agents briefing in Birmingham. Peter Ward, Cargo Supply Chain Commercial Manager, DP World London Gateway, has claimed that shifts in global sourcing, combined with new and multiple channels to market are likely to drive multiple stocking locations.

Peter Ward said: “In the UK it may prove optimal for a major distribution centre in the South to complement another operating in the Midlands.”

Explaining the logic behind DP World’s massive investment into London Gateway, the UK’s new international hub port and Europe’s largest logistics park, Peter Ward said this approach would be particularly relevant to companies whose key customer base is in London and the South East, the country’s largest consumer market and population centre.

Peter added: “Against a background of escalating fuel costs, London Gateway will save millions of pounds of avoidable costs in UK supply chains.”

Meanwhile, Lisa Fitch, Associate Director, Supply Chain Consulting, BNP Paribas, told delegates that the DP World London Gateway port and logistics park development, which offers almost 860,000 sq metres of space and is located just 147 miles from Birmingham, was well timed given current market conditions.

Lisa said: “From a Midlands occupier perspective, the opening of DP World London Gateway next year is perfectly timed for a number of end users that are grappling with the challenges of the recession and are having to accommodate multiple channels to market.

“The port centric logistics model [where distribution centres are located close to a port to reduce transport distances] at London Gateway will be compelling for many businesses as it adds capacity to the market that will enable end users to reconfigure their supply chain.”

Cameron Mitchell, Director of National Industrial & Logistics at Jones Lang LaSalle, commented that the country could be facing a shortage of distribution facilities.

Cameron said: “There is a shortage of good quality distribution capacity looming as a result of a recession related lack of speculative builds over the last two years.

“We therefore welcome DP World London Gateway’s commitment to offer a substantial common-user facility from which businesses can either benefit from incubator or shared space - whilst gaining flexibility in their supply chain - and if the business case is right for them to later move into their own facility.”

Richard Meering, Senior Director, CBRE, added: “We welcome the London Gateway development.”

“This, along with DB Schenker offering rail services from London Gateway to the Midlands, highlights the potential supply chain benefits that end users can gain by utilising London Gateway in conjunction with Midland’s DCs alongside rail hubs such as DIRFT (Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal), Hams Hall and BIFT (Birmingham International Freight Terminal) at Birch Coppice”

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Jun 9, 2021

Biden establishes Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force

3 min
US government lays out plans for supply chain transformation following results of the supply chain review ordered by President Biden in February

The US government is to establish a new body with the express purpose of addressing imbalances and other supply chain concerns highlighted in a review of the sector, ordered by President Joe Biden shortly after his inauguration. 

The Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force will “focus on areas where a mismatch between supply and demand has been evident,” the White House said. The division will be headed up by the Secretaries of Commerce, Transportation, and Agriculture, and will focus on housing construction, transportation, agriculture and food, and semiconductors - a drastic shortage of which has hit some of the US economy’s biggest industries in consumer technology and vehicle manufacturing. 

“The Task Force will bring the full capacity of the federal government to address near-term supply/demand mismatches. It will convene stakeholders to diagnose problems and surface solutions - large and small, public or private - that could help alleviate bottlenecks and supply constraints,” the White House said. 

In late February, President Biden ordered a 100 day review of the supply chain across the key areas of medicine, raw materials and agriculture, the findings of which were released this week. While the COVID-19 health crisis had a deleterious effect on the nation’s supply chain, the published assessment of findings says the root cause runs much deeper. The review concludes that “decades of underinvestment”, alongside public policy choices that favour quarterly results and short-term solutions, have left the system “fragile”. 

In response, the administration aims to address four key issues head on, strengthening its position in health and medicine, sustainable and alternative energy, critical mineral mining and processing, and computer chips. 

Support domestic production of critical medicines


  • A syndicate of public and private entities will jointly work towards manufacturing and onshoring of essential medical suppliers, beginning with a list of 50-100 “critical drugs” defined by the Food and Drug Administration. 
  • The consortium will be led by the Department of Health and Human Services, which will commit an initial $60m towards the development of a “novel platform technologies to increase domestic manufacturing capacity for API”. 
  • The aim is to increase domestic production and reduce the reliance upon global supply chains, particularly with regards to medications in short supply.

Secure an end-to-end domestic supply chain for advanced batteries


  • The Department of Energy will publish a ‘National Blueprint for Lithium Batteries’, beginning a 10 year plan to "develop a domestic lithium battery supply chain that combats the climate crisis by creating good-paying clean energy jobs across America”. 
  • The effort will leverage billions in funding “to finance key strategic areas of development and fill deficits in the domestic supply chain capacity”. 

Invest in sustainable domestic and international production and processing of critical minerals


  • An interdepartmental group will be established by the Department of Interior to identify sites where critical minerals can be produced and processed within US borders. It will collaborate with businesses, states, tribal nations and stockholders to “expand sustainable, responsible critical minerals production and processing in the United States”. 
  • The group will also identify where regulations may need to be updated to ensure new mining and processing “meets strong standards”.

Partner with industry, allies, and partners to address semiconductor shortages


  • The Department of Commerce will increase its partnership with industry to support further investment in R&D and production of semiconductor chips. The White House says its aim will be to “facilitate information flow between semiconductor producers and suppliers and end-users”, improving transparency and data sharing. 
  • Enhanced relationships with foreign allies, including Japan and South Korea will also be strengthened with the express proposed of increasing chip output, promoting further investment in the sector and “to promote fair semiconductor chip allocations”. 

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