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Maersk Launches Asia-Europe Rail-Sea Service

Maersk is flexing its considerable logistics muscle for new delivery services in Asia and Europe.

The Copenhagen-based shipping giant has introduced a new rail-sea service connecting Asia to Europe through Central Asia.

Departing from various locations in China, the new offering connects China and Europe via Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Romania in about 40 days.

“Aiming to create agile and creative solutions to our evolving customer’s needs, this revamped service comes at the perfect time to help ease current logistics woes,” Maia Parlagashvili, global product manager for intercontinental rail at Maersk, said. “We have listened to our customers and developed a solution that provides them an alternative and eco-friendly intermodal connection between Asia and Europe. Over 90 percent of the Middle Corridor rail service is electrified.”

After passing the border of Khorgos between China and Kazakhstan, containers arrive by rail to the station of Aktau where they are loaded on a barge to Baku in Azerbaijani. From there, containers are railed to APM Terminals Poti, Georgia, where they loaded on a feeder vessel to Constanta, Romania. Then the cargo is railed to various destinations across European countries.

Maersk started developing this new route in March and already in April had the first departure from China serving customers from lifestyle, automotive and household appliances industries.

“The Corridor has sufficient open capacity, allowing our customers to strengthen their supply chain resilience by having alternative route to Ocean and Air services,” Parlagashvili added.

In response to customers’ evolving supply chain needs, Maersk has introduced a new rail-sea service connecting Asia to Europe.
Rupesh Jain Courtesy

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In a separate development, Maersk and Decathlon are now extending their partnership to cover the optimization of Decathlon’s last mile delivery in Singapore, following implementation of Decathlon’s “2Hour Click & Collect” service.

With the cooperation covering all Decathlon orders, Maersk will work to enhance Decathlon’s e-commerce capability, providing end-to-end logistics solutions as Decathlon’s dedicated logistics and delivery partner.

“Maersk has been one of our key partners in the past years in Singapore and worldwide,” Stephan Veyret, Decathlon Singapore country leader, said. “At Decathlon Singapore, we like to work long term with key selected companies to plan and to co-build our supply chains, to test and to co-invent new solutions. This is how we see our partnership with Maersk over the years to come, especially in the key and strategic last mile business.”

Maersk is offering an end-to-end solution with last mile e-delivery provided by third parties. This gives Decathlon’s customers real-time tracking and visibility of each parcel via a single platform. Maersk has been successful at delivering orders within Decathlon’s promise of “2Hour Click and Collect” to Decathlon consumers’ preferred pick-up location.

“Maersk Singapore has successfully customized and implemented a new solution to meet Decathlon’s e-commerce needs,” Rupesh Jain, managing director of Maersk Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore, said. “Since the trial started, we have tweaked the delivery solution to ensure it runs seamlessly, with a 120 percent volume increase during this period. We are very proud to partner with Decathlon in handling fast moving and high demand e-commerce delivery services.”

Jain said Maersk has been on a journey to evolve from ocean shipping service provider to a holistic logistic partner for its customers. Having a single, global logistics ecosystem enables its customers to ultimately shape their e-commerce supply chain into an advantage that delivers the best results for their business, as well as their consumers.