Grupo Damm have partnered with leading palletised freight network - Pall-Ex Group, to form Pall-Ex Iberia; a dedicated hub-and-spoke distribution network for the Iberian Peninsula.
Pall-Ex Iberia commenced operations in June 2011 and provides a timely palletised freight distribution service for part loads from their Madrid. Based hub.
Pedro Marin, Main Board Member of Grupo Damm and the principal Project Sponsor of Pall-Ex Iberia says;
“We have always considered logistics as a key driver for the development of any business. Grupo Damm has a proven track record in investing in Logistics-based projects; founding Alfil Logistics in 2000 to support the full load distribution needs of its primary brewing production business.
Latterly we created Agora; a Logistics - consultancy and information technology support company. In recent years we began to see an evolution in the logistics market; as wholesalers and retailers grew in prominence, the frequency of deliveries began to increase however the shipment sizes became smaller.
We identified the need for an overnight, cost-efficient palletised freight delivery service throughout Iberia. As a result, we began to seek out new options for handling these increasing demands. At the time of our searching for a solution, The Pall-Ex Group were seeking out potential Partners for their European Expansion strategy. We felt we could fill the gap that existed in the market by collaborating with Pall- Ex; an established, innovative and quality-driven organisation with a core business based in the UK, and a successful network in Italy.
We felt we could fill the gap that existed in the market by collaborating with Pall- Ex; an established, innovative and quality-driven organisation with a core business based in the UK, and a successful network in Italy.
Having registered our interest in the project we continued to progress in the selection process and concluded by signing a Master License Agreement in 2010, confirming our partnership. The Master License Agreement ensured that both parties brought their key strengths to the project to make it a success. We took the decision of becoming partnering with Pall-Ex, as they clearly demonstrated a progressive ethos and strong networking values, allowing us to be part of a pan-European network and become building a new market offering under Pall-Ex Group’s successful brand.
Our role was to create a network made up of independent and largely regional haulage companies, joining them via a sector-leading IT System and providing them with an effective central hub transhipment operation. This allowed us to create a strong domestic network to provide an overnight and cost effective national service for small consignment loads.
Volumes continue to increase and we hope to shortly commence Pan-European palletised freight distribution with our peer Pall-Ex hubs across Europe in the near future.
Whilst building the network and recruiting local members, one of the main challenges was to recruit members in the rural areas of Iberia. We overcame this by offering solutions to their problems such as sharing vehicles with neighbour members to trunk to the hub, decreasing the cost for those members with low volumes when first joining. It is also a huge selling point to these smaller hauliers that they can be part of a leading network and provide a nationwide service, and in the future pan-European service to their customers.
The Pall-Ex Group provided their extensive experience and knowledge of founding and operating pallet networks to us, this involved numerous training and orientation sessions in the UK, visits to UK members and the UK Hub as well as a number of knowledge-share sessions in Madrid. These visits were supported throughout the planning and implementation of the project.
Press coverage and brand marketing was provided. IT and operational training was given on an ongoing basis and supported through a dedicated UK-based native Spanish project coordinator.
Marketing collateral including; a website, marketing brochures, and other devices were created and provided to ensure a consistent branding strategy was adopted nationally, ensuring that the we maintained the Pan-European strength of the Pall-Ex Brand The Pall-Ex Groups management team provided us with, a clear definition of the Iberian service offering, and facilitated the Pall-Ex Iberia’s development; providing expertise in designing hub layout and operational planning, establishing network fees such as: inter-member rates, hub charges and joining fees, adapting the Member Agreement Contract and supporting the Membership recruitment phase.
A cross-functional project team was deployed during the weeks leading up to and just after the operational start date. The spirit in which we collectively launched Pall-Ex Iberia was demonstrative goodwill between the two project teams. Having established our network, that we must continue to ensure the highest levels of quality service are being performed throughout the network. With the continued support from the Pall-Ex Group, we will continue to organise the network to ensure that customer service levels are second to none.