Logistics are an important factor for the electronics supply chain and are vital to deploying product out to market, time and cost effectively. In an interview with Electronics, UK based, Logistics company, Redhead International ­discusses its complex matrix of service across a worldwide industry network

The electronics industry is a highly competitive and rapidly changing sector that requires comprehensive warehousing and logistics services. But at a time when supply chain strategy is recognised as essential to competitive advantage, increasing globalisation is subjecting the electronics industry to time and cost pressures. However, with the right logistics services, it is possible to optimise production processes and reduce expenses.

Setting the pace amongst commercial carriers – in terms of providing ­tailored services to meet the growing demand by electronics companies to drive cost savings, without compromising on critical business factors – is one of the UK’s largest independent logistics companies, Redhead International.

The company, which has become well known for providing versatile logistics solutions, has regular scheduled services to over 40 countries in Western, Eastern and Southern Europe, Scandinavia, North Africa, the Middle East and the CIS countries from its various facilities across the UK, and specialises not only in working with companies looking to transport complete loads, but also a growing number of companies that may be seeking a more flexible, tailored logistics solution.

The company embodies flexibility, reliability, and the key partnerships it has forged with a number of international logistics giants. In fact, the latter has been essential in mitigating the potential pitfalls inherent in extended supply routes, where goods are crossing numerous borders and cultures.

To meet the growing requirements the company has developed strategic partnerships with a number of leading international logistics companies – including Militzer and Münch and Online Systemlogistik in Germany, as well as Cechofracht in the Czech Republic – to assist in speeding up the delivery of goods and products.

These partners have long established transport routes across Europe and beyond, enabling the company to organise deliveries to multiple locations across many territories, making considerable cost and time-savings on behalf of its customers. However, these companies are not only invaluable logistics partners into the territories, but importantly, out of the territories into the UK and Northern Ireland.

Strategic industry partnerships 

Speaking of its strategic partnerships, Redhead International’s joint Managing Director Tony Suggitt said: “We work with companies on the ground with a wealth of territorial knowledge and experience. Because of the strength of these partnerships we are able to promote our services secure in the knowledge that we can provide a solution that meets customers’ expectations.”

Companies that have customers and suppliers in a number of different countries can also benefit by working in partnership with Redhead, by eliminating the need for goods to be imported into the UK, for them simply to be re-exported back to a desired location in Europe.

In addition, as a growing number of organisations across the UK and Northern Ireland are looking to establish trading relationships in emerging markets, the company is able to provide a launch pad for distribution, allowing these companies to expand their export markets with its swift, reliable and flexible Europe-wide ‘Smartfreight’ service.

“Our Smartfreight service meets the highest standards of quality and flexibility and enables us to fulfil our customers’ requirements by offering bespoke and innovative solutions, in particular the transportation of between one and five pallets,” says Suggitt.

“The company is able to meet the growing needs of many organisations that are reducing the size of their delivery batches.

“While the concept of downsizing delivery batches was initially met with scepticism – with concerns including the reliability of deliveries, products going astray and sharing space with competing products – this kind of logistics arrangement is becoming more conventional, particularly for the electronics industry, where the delivery of crucial components is often time critical,” explains Suggitt.

Flexible logistics also offers another advantage – shorter lead times, an essential element in the very competitive electronics industry.   

“Shipments of electronics items are becoming increasingly time sensitive, which means that electronics companies continue to shorten their lead times to remain competitive. As such, deliveries have to be made in the shortest time possible and this is where flexible, versatile logistics can be an invaluable resource.”

Redhead’s ability to deliver goods swiftly and safely has meant that, despite the double dip recession gripping large swathes of Europe, the company has been able to expand its operations. It recently opened a larger depot in Belfast, Northern Ireland, to help meet the increasing demand for its services.

“We have a long history of working with electronics companies and understand the evolving dynamics of the industry. In order to meet the changing demands of this and many others sectors, we are enhancing not only our services but we are significantly growing our footprint across the UK. In the last six months alone we have opened a new depot in Bristol and we have moved to a larger facility in Belfast,” Suggitt concluded.

Redhead International