THE Australian operations of Across the Ocean Shipping were launched in 2007, a year after the company was established in the UK. The Australian arm of the business has grown steadily, focussed on the mainstream containerised movement of cargo.
Customer demand has now led the company into the specialised fields of break bulk, roll-on, roll-off (RoRo) and containerised home cargo. “While a lot of Australian freight forwarders were concentrating on small warehousing pick and pack solutions targeted primarily at consumer goods from China, we saw an opening in the growing area of break bulk and RoRo shipments that would allow us to offer a specialised service to the mining industry,” Across the Ocean Shipping managing director David Aherne said. “It came as an easy transition for us as we had the support of one of our major clients from within the mining industry for who we bring in hundreds of container houses a year into ports across Australia.
“Many of the mining companies operate multi-continent and by us offering logistics to and from foreign countries it enables them to entrust one company to handle all their global needs, giving them more control over the process and budget.”
Across the Ocean recently moved 280 oversize container houses from Shenyang, China, to Valparaiso, Chile.
It also constantly moves time-sensitive airfreight shipments into Australia for instant delivery to mine sites. “We have systems in place at Across the Ocean to pre-clear the goods before arrival into Australia so that once the cargo is checked in we have drivers on standby to deliver directly to the mines – therefore wasting not a single moment as, after all, time is money,” Mr Aherne said.
“We learnt quickly that the relationships we had built with specialised transport companies could be the ‘make or break’ of the entire process. It isn’t uncommon for oversized cargo to sit in port attracting massive storage fees purely because the next and crucial step hasn’t been well planned by the shipping broker.
“This is why we’ve spent a considerable amount of time building relations and travelling across Australia to meet with third party logistics providers who specialise in oversize break bulk and RoRo cargo.”
According to Across the Ocean sales director Tim Hibbard, an understanding of each client’s unique needs was the key to being successful in the field cargo movement, as well as the ability to exhaust all possible options prior to
presenting a solution to a client.
“In the majority of cases the transit or time requirements are critical and we must do everything in our power to get the cargo to the destination on time and within budget,” he said.
“I believe this understanding gives us the edge, especially with urgent part replacements that need to be on site in the quickest possible time. Production relies on it.”