The potential of intermodal freight transport in the UK was the hotly debated topic at a seminar hosted here in the UK by Konecranes – the world’s leading lifting equipment and service provider.
Held at The Thistle Hotel in Birmingham and themed ‘Tracks To Success’, a large number of key delegates from a diverse range of industry sectors, including ports, rail freight, logistics, haulage and distribution, and civil engineering, attended the event to hear keynote speeches from intermodal industry specialists and debate the topics and issues covered. These included: intermodal terminal planning, civil engineering and construction, IT systems integration, capital equipment delivery and project financing options. As the seminar hosts, the platform also gave Konecranes the opportunity to present its technology and service driven approach to helping customers ‘lift’ their business within this developing sector.
Commenting on the success of the seminar, the first of its kind to be held by Konecranes, Director of Market Area – West Europe, Pat Campbell, said: "I think everyone who attended the seminar would agree that it was extremely beneficial. All of the key subject areas covered were the subject of quite lengthy debate, all of which was very positive, and driven through a high degree of audience participation. Indeed it presented the ideal stage from which a number of leading organisations already involved with intermodal transportation could either raise issues or concerns or, indeed, put forward their own opinions and views in the process."
This is a view shared by Ville Hoppu, Konecranes’ Port Cranes Sales Manager and the orchestrator of the event. "The UK was the natural choice for the first Konecranes seminar of this kind, given the potential for growth that exists in the UK intermodal sector. Also, the UK is one of Konecranes’ most important markets, and has been since the late 1950s. The seminar proved to be a dynamic event, and based on its success we shall now be looking to mirror it in other European and global markets, both established and emerging."
With cranes and other types of lifting equipment forming an integral part of all future intermodal operations, whether attached to a port, logistics hub or containerised waste terminal, one of the main purposes of the seminar platform was to stress that end-users, project managers, designers and contractors need to engage lifting equipment specialists at every stage of the design, build, commissioning and operational process.
Concluding, Pat Campbell said: "When it comes to the intermodal sector, Konecranes has a clear ability to provide a comprehensive product and service offering that can be tailored to address the different needs of specific customers. This is something that was hopefully put across in a very honest, transparent and forthright manner."