Menlo Worldwide ‘greens’ its transport partner fleet

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Menlo Worldwide Logistics, the global logistics subsidiary of Con-way Inc., announced today, April 3, that it is demonstrating its commitment to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Transport Partnership by increasing its use of SmartWay-approved carriers. The company also recently relocated its Asia-Pacific regional headquarters office.

Since pledging its commitment to SmartWay six months ago, Menlo says it has significantly stepped up spending with carriers that also are supporting and promoting greater energy efficiency by using practices and equipment recommended through the EPA program.

“Menlo spends nearly $1 billion on transportation with contract carriers each year,” says Gary Kowalski, chief operating officer of San Mateo, Calif.-based Menlo Worldwide Logistics. “Now, with more than 80 percent of that transportation spend going to SmartWay-approved carriers, we are supporting environmental stewardship throughout the transportation industry.”

Menlo says encouraging the highest level of efficiency in the freight transportation industry is critical to meeting Con-way Inc.’s enterprise-wide commitment to sustainable business practices. Menlo says its earlier implementation of Lean philosophies, which focus on eliminating waste wherever it exists, complements its support of SmartWay program principles; by the time the company committed to SmartWay, Lean initiatives already had led the company to begin implementing technologies such as energy-efficient and motion-triggered lighting as facilities are upgraded.

Menlo says its SmartWay campaign comprises a series of steps aimed at educating and promoting green initiatives among its contract carriers, including:

  • Making SmartWay compliance a preferred factor when considering new carriers;
  • Encouraging existing carriers to join SmartWay during Menlo’s annual carrier review process;
  • Considering moving over-the-road truckload shipments to an intermodal service;
  • Reducing paper consumption in carrier communications by encouraging electronic exchanges; and
  • Implementing a “no-idling” policy at Menlo distribution centers.
  • “I commend Menlo for integrating clean innovative strategies and technologies into its operations,” says Margo T. Oge, director of EPA’s Office of Transportation & Air Quality. “These technologies go a long way toward a cleaner environment and more secure energy supply.”

    While Menlo already has rolled out many elements of Con-way’s enterprise-wide sustainability campaign, it expects to have implemented all of its proposed strategies by the end of 2008. Menlo says its efforts in sustainability also aligns with key customer strategies to promote green business practices. Toward that end, Menlo says its commitment to SmartWay will continue to drive year-over-year improvements toward full carrier compliance with the program’s principles.

    Menlo Worldwide Asia Pacific Pte Ltd. recently relocated from the Airport Logistics Park of Singapore to a new location at 30 Boon Lay Way near Singapore’s Jurong Port and the larger Jurong Industrial Estate.

    Menlo says the move centralizes its regional management, sales and administrative support operations for Singapore and the South Asia region at the larger Boon Lay facility, which the company obtained last year with the acquisition of Cougar Holdings Pte Ltd. Menlo continues to operate extensive warehousing, inventory management and distribution facilities for its customers at ALPS, as well as other locations in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.

    According to Todd Johnson, vice president of international operations and Menlo’s top executive in Singapore, the move enables the company to unify its local management team, maintain effective customer service, and improve sales and administrative operations in support of its growth objectives for Singapore and the South Asia region.

    “At Menlo Worldwide Logistics, we are constantly examining ways to better serve our customers and associates,” Johnson says. “As a company grows and evolves, a natural progression is the need for work space improvement. After a comprehensive review and careful consideration, we determined the relocation of our former office in ALPS to our existing office in Boon Lay Way was in the best long-term interests of our customers and employees.”

    With this move, Menlo’s regional team of operations, sales, marketing, engineering, solutions, finance and human resources departments are stationed in same location, thereby promoting greater efficiency, collaboration, convenience and customer responsiveness. Menlo says it will continue to provide the same broad menu of services to customers, including warehousing and distribution, transportation and inventory management, value-added services, automotive logistics, supply-chain consulting and trade documentation.

    Johnson says the office unification is consistent with the company’s larger objective of providing superior market-leading services to customers throughout the region. “Menlo will continue to uphold our longstanding commitment to our local communities,” he says. “Customers will be able to rely on the same Menlo people for the exceptional customer service they have come to know and trust.”