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Article
Publication date: 2 October 2019

Gökcay Balci, Aylin Caliskan and Kum Fai Yuen

In recent years, the business of container lines has faced severe challenges such as overcapacity and low profitability. To survive in such a competitive market, container

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Abstract

Purpose

In recent years, the business of container lines has faced severe challenges such as overcapacity and low profitability. To survive in such a competitive market, container lines need to maintain long-term customer relationships by enhancing the satisfaction and loyalty of customers. The purpose of this paper is to adopt a social exchange theory (SET) approach and investigate the impact of relational bonding strategies on the satisfaction and loyalty of customers in container shipping.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on SET, a theoretical model that specifies the relationships between relational bonding strategies, customer satisfaction and loyalty was proposed. Survey data were collected from 175 freight forwarders. The obtained data were analyzed using structural equation modelling.

Findings

The results indicate that financial bonding strategies have the most significant direct effects on customer satisfaction, while social bonding strategies have the strongest direct impact on customer loyalty. Financial bonding strategies, on the other hand, have the strongest total effects on customer loyalty. Intermodal and basic operations are found to have the equal total effects on customer loyalty.

Research limitations/implications

By identifying the most effective relational bonding strategies for enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty, this study’s findings allow container lines to better allocate their resources and implement effective relational marketing policies to satisfy and retain their customers.

Originality/value

This research analyses and validates the determinants of customer satisfaction and loyalty from a relational lens and empirically contributes to the field of relational marketing in the container shipping industry.

Details

International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, vol. 49 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-0035

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 16 June 2020

Xu Zhang and Hans-Joachim Schramm

This paper presents an overview of the recent development of Eurasian rail freight in the Belt and Road era and further evaluates its service quality in terms of transit…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper presents an overview of the recent development of Eurasian rail freight in the Belt and Road era and further evaluates its service quality in terms of transit times and transport costs compared to other transport modes in containerised supply chains between Europe and China.

Design/methodology/approach

A trade-off model of transit time and transport costs based on quantitative data from primary and secondary sources is developed to demonstrate the market niche for Eurasian rail freight vis-a-vis the more established modes of transport of sea, air and sea/air. In a scenario analysis, further cargo attributes influencing modal choice are employed to show for which cargo type Eurasian rail freight service is favourable from a shipper's point of view.

Findings

At present, Eurasian rail freight is about 80% less expensive than air freight with only half of the transit time of conventional sea freight. Our scenario analysis further suggests that for shipping time-sensitive goods with lower cargo value ranging from $US1.23/kg to $US10.89/kg as well as goods with lower time sensitivity and higher value in a range of $US2.46/kg to $US21.78/kg, total logistics costs of Eurasian rail freight service rail is cheaper than all other modes of transport.

Practical implications

As an emerging competitive solution, Eurasian rail freight demonstrates to be an option beneficial in terms of transport cost, transit time, reliability and service availability, which offers a cost-efficient option enabling shippers to build up agile and more sustainable supply chains between China and Europe.

Originality/value

Our study firstly provides a comprehensive assessment of present Eurasian rail freight including a thorough comparison with alternative modes of transport from a shipper's point of view.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 17 May 2013

Robert Mason and Rawindaran Nair

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which supply side flexibility tactics are deployed by operators in the container liner shipping sector in 2009/200 to…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the extent to which supply side flexibility tactics are deployed by operators in the container liner shipping sector in 2009/200 to restrict supply in a market which is characterised by over‐supply (as well as under demand).

Design/methodology/approach

Taking a case study approach using the Far East‐Europe trade lane, secondary data are reviewed for each type of internal flexibility capability. This is supplemented by a qualitative Delphi‐based research method so that findings are iteratively verified with leading practitioner personnel.

Findings

In 2009, directly after the severe imbalance between demand and supply emerged, liner shipping providing companies were only partially able to exploit the flexibility tactics that were available to them. This improved in 2010 and contributed to an upturn in performance.

Research limitations/implications

Ocean freight logistics provides a vital foundation for contemporary international commerce. However, the viable provision of this service has become significantly more challenging and this research examines why this is the case and what supply side responses are being deployed. Taking a case study approach focussing on 2009/2010 restricts the generalisability of the research that could now be examined on a longer time scale across the whole sector.

Originality/value

This research is novel as there has been no previous research which has looked at the deployment of supply side flexibility tactics in the container liner shipping sector. The findings have considerable bearing on how the industry is run and understood by its providers, customers and regulators.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 December 2021

Wen-Hung Huang, Kenneth Bicol Dy, Ching-Cheng Chang and Shih-Hsun Hsu

This study deals with attenuating the risk of relying on a single export market, which was heightened by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. It focuses on Taiwanese…

Abstract

Purpose

This study deals with attenuating the risk of relying on a single export market, which was heightened by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. It focuses on Taiwanese atemoya (a fruit with short storage life) and the adoption of active controlled atmosphere (CA) containers, a new technology which lengthens storage time for other export markets. This study looks at the financial feasibility of the technology's first ever use in atemoya exports.

Design/methodology/approach

Apart from the standard financial assessment tools—like net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR), benefit-cost ratio (BCR) and payback period (PBP)—this study calibrated five different scenarios based on data gathered from relevant market agents including suppliers, exporters, customs brokers and technology developer.

Findings

Due to the high profit margin and low investment cost, the use of active CA containers for long-haul exports of this highly perishable fruit is found both technically and financially feasible, despite the generally higher operational cost during the pandemic.

Research limitations/implications

This study looked at three specific export markets: Malaysia, Dubai and Canada. Results here may lack generalizability in other markets, although it is believed that slight deviations would not invalidate the conclusions of this research because short, medium and long distances were all covered therein.

Originality/value

This paper studies the first time that active CA is used for export of atemoyas to expand existing markets.

Details

Journal of Agribusiness in Developing and Emerging Economies, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-0839

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 29 December 2021

Takuma Matsuda, Enna Hirata and Tomoya Kawasaki

Since the 2010s, market conditions for container shipping companies have been deteriorating owing to decreasing container cargo trade and increasing supply capacity. This…

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Abstract

Purpose

Since the 2010s, market conditions for container shipping companies have been deteriorating owing to decreasing container cargo trade and increasing supply capacity. This study aims to contribute to the empirical literature on the container shipping industry market structure. Specifically, this study aims to investigate the extent of market competition.

Design/methodology/approach

This study analyzes the market structure and evaluates the market power of shipping companies through a non-structural test.

Findings

The H-statistic for the entire period of 2004–2018 was 0.37, which is significantly different from zero. This indicates the absence of monopoly pricing throughout the entire period. For the time-phased estimates, the H-statistic between 2004 and 2008 is 0.15, which is not significantly different from zero. On the other hand, the H-statistic from 2009 to 2018 was 0.40, which differs significantly from zero.

Originality/value

As the Far East Freight Conference had released tariffs and charge rates by item for container shipping routes, monopolistic pricing is said to have appeared until the European Union abolished the European Economic Community (No. 4056/86) in 2008, before the economic crisis. However, this study indicates that pricing in the container shipping industry has been distinctly non-monopolistic; further, competition seems to have intensified since 2008. Industry competitiveness is of interest not only to academics but also to practitioners, including policymakers, especially when considering competition policies.

Details

Maritime Business Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2397-3757

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 February 2014

Neeraj Bhanot and Harwinder Singh

Indian Railways being sole government organization for infrastructure, operations and regulatory functions entered for competition in the container segment in January 2006…

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Abstract

Purpose

Indian Railways being sole government organization for infrastructure, operations and regulatory functions entered for competition in the container segment in January 2006 through private-public participation for customer-centric competitiveness to break monopolistic control of Container Corporation of India (CONCOR) introducing limited licensing policy. The purpose of this research work is to carry out benchmarking the performance indicators in Indian Railway container business and select private players.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study has been conducted employing data envelopment analysis (DEA) methodology on secondary data of container terminals of CONCOR, Adani and Gateway logistics. Data from the year 1995-1996 till 2010-2011 have been used for performance evaluation within CONCOR itself and comparative analysis for all three organizations from 2005-2006 till 2010-2011.

Findings

The exercise identified efficiency trends fluctuating between 87.5 and 100 percent within CONCOR owing to haphazard infrastructure developed while comparison with private players showed 38.31-77.59 percent efficiency fluctuation concurrent to licensing policy norms.

Research limitations/implications

The reliability of data provided by the selected operators for needful research is merely on the information and available sources.

Originality/value

The study enables the reader to gain some valuable insights from a managerial perspective by the use of DEA methodologies so as to formulate strategies to foster better performance.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 21 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 30 January 2004

Peter J. Rimmer

Toyota's internationally coordinated production system in Asia and its selection of supply bases in South America and South Africa highlights the significance of…

Abstract

Toyota's internationally coordinated production system in Asia and its selection of supply bases in South America and South Africa highlights the significance of recognizing global network firms and the global hub-and-spoke logistics system that has been developed to meet their needs. This system underpins the expansion of container shipping, air freight and telecommunications. Recognition of Main Street, linking Europe, Asia and North America with cui-desacs in Africa, Australasia and Central and South America, provides a framework for examining the relative importance of the system's hubs and terminals across different modes and regions. This analysis provides the basis for identifying and ranking key regional logistics platforms in Northeast Asia and their attraction as headquarter sites for global network firms. Examining the logistical situation pertaining after the end of the Cold War in the early 1990s and a decade later is used to gauge progress towards regional economic integration in Northeast Asia.

Content available
Article
Publication date: 25 April 2016

Dong Yang, Jinxian Weng and Jia Hu

Shaanxi, Shanxi province and Inner Mongolia in north China are the nation’s leading producers of coal. In the past decades, a huge amount of coal has been transported from…

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Abstract

Purpose

Shaanxi, Shanxi province and Inner Mongolia in north China are the nation’s leading producers of coal. In the past decades, a huge amount of coal has been transported from these areas to the central and south China via ports in Hebei Province and Port of Tianjin. Traditionally, coal is transported in bulk shipment. However, in recent years, an interesting phenomenon is that the lump coal is sorted out in the north and then moved in containers to the south. This paper aims to ascertain whether the coal containerization will become an alternative transport mode for moving lump coal from the north to the south of China. Based on extensive field investigation and data analyses, it is found that although the container mode appears to be more expensive than the bulk shipping mode, the cost difference between the two modes is not as significant as our expectation if we also take into factors like fragmented demand, environment pressure, geographic distribution characteristics of customers and so on.

Design/methodology/approach

Extensive field investigation, data analysis and economic decision model.

Findings

It is found that although the container mode appears to be more expensive than the bulk shipping mode, the cost difference between the two modes is not as significant as the authors’ expectation if they also take into factors like fragmented demand, environment pressure, geographic distribution characteristics of customers and so on.

Originality/value

Although the major focus has been placed on the food containerization, the coal containerization is still a new thing and has attracted only limited attention. This paper is making an initial attempt to profile the phenomenon of coal containerization in China. This attempt is believed to not only enrich the literature of coal containerization but also support the literature of bulk containerization.

Details

Maritime Business Review, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2397-3757

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 April 2014

Samsul Islam and Tava Olsen

This study aims to explore the challenges of truck-sharing and effective ways of dealing with those in achieving supply chain collaboration and collaboration in…

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to explore the challenges of truck-sharing and effective ways of dealing with those in achieving supply chain collaboration and collaboration in transportation management (e.g. transport collaboration) for transport capacity expansion, and reducing carbon emission and traffic congestion for integrating environmental and social sustainability issues. This paper also reveals insights into successful shared-transportation and a reduction in empty trips.

Design/methodology/approach

This exploratory qualitative study was conducted by means of interviewing road carriers from the container transportation industry.

Findings

In a truck-sharing initiative, technical issues (e.g. carrying capacity) arise, some of which involve the container truck and some involving constraints that cannot be controlled, such as driving restrictions, seaport operating hours, and the presence of the large number of container categories pertaining to the industry. Therefore, a significant amount of “structural empty running” may always prevail. It should also be noted that some, seemingly vital, constraints can actually be changed, treated, or modified for better truck-sharing outcomes, such as building a foundation of trust and establishing coordination among road carriers.

Practical implications

A probable solution to the problem of increasing hinterland transport capacity is to make appropriate use of the huge number of idle truck slots that exist; this could be achieved by encouraging the acceptance of the challenges of truck-sharing realistically and suggesting an approach to handling them.

Originality/value

To broaden its appeal, truck-sharing initiatives must be able to overcome challenges by combining theoretical insight with an understanding of the practical aspects of such an endeavor. This original research fosters knowledge that is unique and which also has real-life applications in maritime logistics studies and supply chain literature for both port authorities and container road carriers.

Article
Publication date: 22 September 2020

Yanhui Chen, Bin Liu and Tianzi Wang

This paper applied grey wave forecasting in a decomposition–ensemble forecasting method for modelling the complex and non-linear features in time series data. This…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper applied grey wave forecasting in a decomposition–ensemble forecasting method for modelling the complex and non-linear features in time series data. This application aims to test the advantages of grey wave forecasting method in predicting time series with periodic fluctuations.

Design/methodology/approach

The decomposition–ensemble method combines empirical mode decomposition (EMD), component reconstruction technology and grey wave forecasting. More specifically, EMD is used to decompose time series data into different intrinsic mode function (IMF) components in the first step. Permutation entropy and the average of each IMF are checked for component reconstruction. Then the grey wave forecasting model or ARMA is used to predict each IMF according to the characters of each IMF.

Findings

In the empirical analysis, the China container freight index (CCFI) is applied in checking prediction performance. Using two different time periods, the results show that the proposed method performs better than random walk and ARMA in multi-step-ahead prediction.

Originality/value

The decomposition–ensemble method based on EMD and grey wave forecasting model expands the application area of the grey system theory and graphic forecasting method. Grey wave forecasting performs better for data set with periodic fluctuations. Forecasting CCFI assists practitioners in the shipping industry in decision-making.

Details

Grey Systems: Theory and Application, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2043-9377

Keywords

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