In an ordinary year, the Transpacific import peak season is especially intense for Damco. Their multimillion-dollar accounts include the largest of the big box retailers. Every year in the months preceding August, September and October, they get a flood of customers who are desperate for help getting their cargo on Transpacific eastbound vessels from Asia to U.S. ports. Damco is challenged each year to not only take on new customers but also to prevent their clients’ containers from being rolled.
Matthew Koivisto, Head of Ocean Product, East Area, recollects, "In past years, all we could do for customers was make an expensive FAK booking and hope for the best knowing that half the time that booking might get rolled."
In 2018, in addition to the usual scramble for space, Damco and the rest of the market had impending trade tariffs to contend with which caused a super peak.
Luckily for their customers, Damco had laid the groundwork well before the season by securing space through NYSHEX in anticipation of the annual spike in demand. They approached a few of their large BCO accounts and proactively proposed NYSHEX as a solution.
Koivisto says, “We wanted to make sure that none of our clients had a problem finding space, that we had a ready-made solution for them. So this year we didn't wait for peak season. We started early on with our sales team and account managers in particular just to make sure that they understood they had a solution in place.”
Damco ended up as one of the top movers of cargo on NYSHEX that season. By selling guaranteed solutions in an uncertain market, they added value for their customers and added to their bottom-line considerably.
“Now we've actually got a more secure way of offering a booking during peak season that we know is going to sail and a lot of our customers are starting to embrace that.”- Matthew Koivisto, Head of Ocean Product, East Asia
Damco’s NYSHEX strategy provided them with a creative and innovative solution to their customers’ space needs during the busiest time of the year. And in the case of those who wanted to beat the trade tariffs, Damco was able to save them a lot of money. Proving themselves invaluable to their space-pressed accounts was only the beginning of their results.
In addition, Damco has benefitted from the clear visibility of digital contracting which makes it easy to keep track of what they’re doing and know exactly what they are buying—a huge improvement over past years’ efforts which involved purchasing premium FAK services primarily via phone and email.
With NYSHEX’s reasonable and reliable contracting alternative, Damco and its customers were able to ride high throughout the extraordinary uncertainty of peak season 2018.