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Case study

Global network

A leading specialty chemicals company leverages Odyssey’s network and full range of logistics services to ensure on-time deliveries

At work in his Belgian office, a logistics director realizes that recent flooding in the Midwestern United States will create issues to the selected rail route for a particular shipment he is monitoring.

From his location in Minneapolis, his manager logs into the system and also knows that the flooding is going to affect the shipment of building materials and adhesives expected from Asia. He comments, “The rail lines are affected by flooding, it looks like things might be delayed.”

“Hang on just one second… it looks like we may be good. The rail routes have been changed, and it looks like they’ll be arriving on time via truck. Good news!”

It’s moments like this where transparency and real time data are vital.

A leading specialty chemicals and materials company relies on Odyssey to move its products around the world, delivering them safely and on schedule. At the same time, the company also wants its customers to be able to track their own deliveries in real-time and have access to rich shipment data. The company manufactures materials that are used in construction that adhere glass facades and curved or suspended structures. In buildings, their products make construction materials work better and longer, and help absorb stress and movement from the wind.

As their trusted logistics partner, Odyssey provides the company with sourcing for over-the-road transportation in more than 25 countries spanning North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. The company’s SAP-based ERP (enterprise resource planning) structure is tightly integrated with Odyssey’s Global Logistics PlatformSM, resulting in a harmonized global transportation management system. And, the Odyssey platform also supports more than 20 languages, including Mandarin and Japanese.

Moving beyond the provision of complete multimodal transportation services, Odyssey also provides sample fulfillment for this client through its subsidiary, Chemical Marketing Concepts (CMC).

Connecting globally, empowering locally

Although the company is global, this particular need for Odyssey’s services existed in North America. Odyssey eliminated the potential geographical challenge by establishing a single point of contact, a dedicated account manager, who was based in the local time zone and who was fluent in the local language. Having that on-the-spot presence not only enables execution and procurement activities, it also provides analytical support for ocean shipments in the region. And because it is linked with the company’s SAP system, Odyssey’s robust global logistics platform matches information, identifies and resolves issues and maintains master logistical data that is easily accessible and transparent to the company’s logistics team.

All modes of transport

Odyssey’s Optimodal services provide a wide array of choices in multi-mode transportation and routing, enabling clients to react immediately to issues that threaten the on-time, safe delivery of their cargo. This system flexibility ensures uninterrupted shipment flow and meets the customers’ local needs.

The greatest potential for disaster with any client is not delivering product on time. There’s a big trust factor involved. Customers expect us to keep our eyes on their needs, and a big part of that is empowering the customer to have access to the status of a shipment at anytime from anywhere.

Snyder also added that portals for satellite tracking can be set up to provide real-time data.

Customers want to know exactly where their shipments are at any given time and this is one of the many ways we provide them visibility to accurate information.

Leveraging Odyssey’s network ensures that their clients hit their delivery windows by providing them innovative solutions to challenges to their transportation activities. For example, when recent flooding in the Midwestern United States threatened the client’s delivery schedule, Odyssey proposed changing the rail routing of a shipment, transferring the tanks that were being shipped and then trucking them to their final destination-on time.

Global sample fulfillment

The chemicals this company provides are used in a variety of industries, including construction, automotive, coatings, medical devices, semiconductor, adhesives and many others. As these products are developed, the need for samples to be shipped quickly is critically important.

Odyssey provides samples directly to the client’s customer. We offer a cost-effective model that credits the client and also captures sales data. Our job is to provide small samples for our clients so they can focus on processing large revenue orders quickly and efficiently.

Ongoing reporting provides detailed monthly invoices to Odyssey clients with a history of all sample activity.

Our clients enjoy total transparency and have 24/7 access to actual costs and accurate sample request data without losing direct contact with their client.

When a sample leaves CMC-95 percent within 24 hours-it is assigned an order number that enables the client’s customer to see and track real-time shipment data directly via Odyssey’s Web portal and eliminates the need for them to contact Odyssey’s client for updates on their shipment status.

Before heading home for the weekend, the manager e-mails his director, “It’s all good. We’re going to get the materials required to finish our end of the job—on time and within the budget.”

“Perfect! Have a good weekend!” responds his director. 

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