Rule 1 Position your port/region in new logistics networks Different industry sectors prefer different supply chain set-ups. While computer, spare parts and microchips are often supplied from a central European distribution center, other sectors like pharma and medtech choose more regional distribution centers. And fast moving consumer goods, food and clothing have typically a two tier supply model, with regional distribution centers and satellite DCs. It is important to find out in which supply chains your port, city or region fits best.

Rule 2 Set up flexible multimodal services to/from the region Europe has 12 multiport regions. All these gateways have own hinterland networks and nodes. For inland ports and terminals it is important to become a hub in these hinterland networks through flexible multimodal services. Regions where logistic service providers are established which offer synchromodal services (flexible switching between transport modes) will win the battle.

Rule 3 Know the logistics ‘hot’ issues in your priority sectors Different sectors of industry or supply chain have different challenges: new concepts (for example: mixing centers in the food industry), new geographies (Russia, Turkey), new channels (e-commerce), new production models (built to order), new industry regulations (European packaging regulations), new transport barriers (limited number of hours to deliver in inner-cities). Know what’s hot, because that will make you look as an industry inside.

Rule 4 Act upon all locations criteria of potential clients Whether it is a shipper or a logistics services provider, both will look at a comprehensive list of cost factors (labor cost, transportation cost, warehousing cost, taxes, etc.) and quality factors (e.g. labor quality and flexibility, labor regulations, transportation networks, customs, sites & facilities). Check your scores on these factors and try to improve.

Rule 5 Optimize opportunities for E-fulfilment solutions E-commerce is growing fast in Europe. That means also that fulfillment solutions have to be found. Web-only companies or e-tailers (like or Zalando) choose different distribution solutions than brick & click-retailers (example Tesco) or producers who sell direct (Dell and Apple for example). Buck Consultants International has identified 5 different network types and you have to find out in which your region could play a role.

For cities, regions, seaports, inland ports and airports the 40 slides presentation is available. Please write to:, phone: +31-24-3790222

Learn more about this topic or want to discuss this topic with an expert?

Receive news from BCI