Valour Consultancy has compiled a list of some of the biggest and most interesting smart terminal ports around the world. Browse our list of companies and regions they operate within.
- Singapore’s PSA International owns 60 terminals across 26 countries, spanning four continents across regions such as Asia, the Middle East, and Europe and has investments in ports in countries such as Belgium India, Italy, Netherlands, Japan, and Panama. It is investing in smart port technology both in Singapore and the Middle East. Strangely, for a Singapore-based company, it seems to be behind the leaders in AI and smart technology.
- Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH) is based and managed out of Hong Kong, China, it currently operates nearly 300 berths across several important ports around the world. It is a subsidiary under the CK Hutchison Holdings group and has operations in 48 various ports. Their terminals are spread across prominent shipping routes including Asia, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and the Americas (Mexico and Canada). Their port interests include some of the top ports around the world such as the Port of Barcelona, Port of Buenos Aires, Port of Busan, and the Thames Port of London. Interestingly, PSA International has bought a minority 20% stake in HPH in a global expansion effort. The company’s knack for gaining a strong foothold and as first-movers in developing markets has been integral to its success. Asia has some of Hutchison Ports most extensive mega-vessel handling facilities with remote-control and automated equipment supported by the latest technology and capable of handling multiple mega-vessels simultaneously.
- China Merchant Holdings International is a major terminal operator and shipping firm that has its headquarters in Hong Kong, China. It has interests in port management, terminal operation, cargo transportation, logistics, and supply chain management. It operates primarily in and around China and has bases in several prominent locations. It operates from the ports of Qingdao, Tianjin, Shanghai, Ningbo Zhoushan, and Shenzhen. The Mawan port in Shenzen is an example of how the company has been working to automate and mechanize more operations using ultrafast fifth-generation wireless technology. The port is also testing automated vehicles on the ground, which could reduce human error in sorting containers. Using these automated system CMH is hoping to bring smart technology to smaller ports along the Belt and Road global infrastructure development strategy adopted by the Chinese government in 2013.
- COSCO Shipping Ports (CS Ports) operates terminals in several countries in Asia and the Americas with designated divisions to handle each of the regions. It has operations out of Hong Kong, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Singapore, and Japan that caters to shipping in their respective regions. The company also deals in shipbuilding, repair, maintenance, freight handling, and other auxiliary services. It has numerous interests in other domains including the trade, finance, container handling, real estate, and IT sector. Armed with significant capital, CS Ports is looking to home in on regions such as Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Africa, if the opportunity should arise. It has a 67% ownership of Piraeus (4th largest in Europe) container port in Greece. Last year, CS Ports announced the successful completion of a 5G-enabled, automated vehicle trial at the Port of Xiamen, a constructive result in the development of smart ports.
- Evergreen Marine Corporation (EMC) is a Taiwanese firm that deals in container handling, transportation, shipping, and port management. It operates two main classes of terminals- transhipment hubs, and other container hubs. The two transhipment hubs, Taichung and Kaohsiung Container Terminals, are in Taiwan. There is another facility called the Colon Container Terminal based in Panama. It has other container terminals in the US based in California (Evergreen Los Angeles Terminal and Oakland Evergreen Terminal), and Washington (Tacoma Evergreen Pierce County Container Terminal). There are several major container terminals in Asia (Thailand, Taiwan), Europe (Italy, UK), and the Middle East. Its main use for smart technology is installed on board its large container vessels that allow customers to track and trace their cargoes and automatically produces way bills and bills of lading.
- APM Terminals, owned by the Maersk Group operating out of the Netherlands, operates 74 ports in 58 countries. It provides numerous smart services for global shipping lines through ventures such as Terminal and Inland Services Network and the Global Ports. It provides services to over 60 lines and has several port interests in the US under the SeaLand M&A. APM has been hailed as an innovator in the field of shipping and terminals with several projects underway to automate their ports.
- Terminal Investment Limited (TIL) has material ownership interests in 40 operating terminals and 1 development terminal in 27 countries on five continents. TIL primarily services ships owned and operated by the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) but also takes on other companies for terminal management on a contractual basis. Its services include berth securing, terminal management, and other auxiliary functions. Its investment in smart port technology is unclear although it has ordered six hybrid rubber-tired gantry cranes (RTGs) equipped with a suite of SmartPort process automation solutions.
- Eurogate Container Terminal Ltd. is a majorly European terminal operator that works out of Bremen, Germany and operates mainly within Europe with terminals in Hamburg, Limassol, Salerno, and Lisbon in addition to another four European terminals and its Bremen homebase. Outside Europe, it has only a single base in Tangier, Morocco. Two years ago the company established a collaboration with a technology centre in Hamburg to develop methods and tools for intelligent and automated decision making.
- In the UK, PD Ports based in Middlesbrough, operate Teesport, a major deep-water complex and one of the largest container ports in the North of England. PD Logistics is their leading logistics business, delivering flexible portcentric solutions to improve the supply chain. PD Ports also offer customer solutions at a number of other key locations such as Felixstowe and the Humber Estuary. They state that they invest in ground breaking technology and operations and use drones across a variety of departments, including Harbour Police and Engineering, to deliver multiple benefits to the business, and the wider river community, including emergency response, surveillance and surveying, and asset and infrastructure management.
- Peel Ports have seven UK and Irish ports under their control, Clydeport, Dublin, Great Yarmouth, Heysham, Liverpool, London Medway and Manchester Ship Canal with advanced infrastructure, facilities and services. The company is the first port group in the country to take delivery of an autonomous unmanned survey vessel, which completed its first successful trial at Crosby Marine Lake, north of Liverpool. This vessel It uses GPS location tracking to follow pre-set waypoints and mission parameters, navigating autonomously while intelligently avoiding obstacles up to 50m ahead. The vessel communicates to the remote base station by WIFI, 4g and VHF radio.
- Forth Ports is a UK-based multimodal ports owner and operator. The company owns and operates eight commercial ports on the Firth of Forth, the Firth of Tay and the Thames, namely Tilbury (London), Grangemouth, Dundee, Leith (Edinburgh), Rosyth, Methil, Burntisland and Kirkcaldy. The Port of Tilbury is home to the London Container Terminal, the only terminal servicing both short-sea and deep-sea customers. In 2019 it implemented an industry-first, public cloud-hosted analytics solution called the Azure foundation. The solution helped draw data insights from existing and new data sources covering a range of port operation areas. A new data warehouse was established and a number of data models were developed to facilitate data insights and self-service analytics. The focus areas included gate performance, vehicle booking system analysis, throughput analysis, vessel productivity and market intelligence, together with new commercially orientated support facilities
Middle East & Africa
- DP World out of Dubai is registered as a multinational company specializing in logistics. Its terminals handle and process nearly 10% of all global container trade and is a major player in Asia, Europe, and the Americas. It has interests in Africa, the Asia Pacific region, and Australia, operating over 40 terminals across 22 nations and operates through 2 home terminals- the Port of Jebel Ali and Port Rashid. DPW also has other interests including managing free trade zones, auxiliary maritime services, counter-piracy measures, and supply chain security. It has invested in smart technology at London Gateway with 12 138m ship-to-shore cranes that can be operated remotely as they lift four 20-foot containers (or two 40 footers) at time. In addition, 60 automated stacking cranes load and unload around 1,800 trucks per day aided by an incredible array of sensors and automated cameras.
- International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI) is a port management firm based out of the Philippines. It has bases in 18 different countries and operates 18 terminals in Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, Africa, and the Asia Pacific regions. It deals with up to 3 million TEUs annually in addition to processing other types of bulk and loose cargo. It operates numerous terminals within its home base in the Philippines. Outside this base, it primarily services ports in South America and Africa. This year, the company announced that it had successfully implemented an AI-powered operational optimisation program at its Manila International Container Terminal. The YardSight AI module provides logic for the most efficient stacking positions based on optimal work balancing of the terminal’s rubber tired gantries (RTGs) resulting in increased productivity for internal and external trucks, reduced traffic clashes, and minimised yard rehandles when stacking import containers.
- SSA Marine is an American terminal operator that is predominantly USA based. It has operations across five continents and services 250 various locations. Outside the US, it has interests and operations in Mexico, Panama, and Chile and has investments in the South East Asia. It provides several other services in addition to terminal operation. The Tuxpan Port Terminal, on the Gulf Coast of Mexico, has deployed automated stacking cranes and remote-controlled gate facilities for trucking communities and is trialling a 5G network to deploy cell technology in its terminal. On a 4G network a terminal can monitor around 100,000 sensors and IoT devices within a square kilometer. With a 5G network, connections can reach one million and the network can allow low latency fast connectivity with a variety of data sources within the terminal: including CCTV; Optical Character Recognition (OCR) cameras; Container Freight Station (CFS) operations; and truck and vessel data. This allows the operator can deploy digital twin solutions to predictively analyse various scenarios of logistics and container movement within the terminal.
Read our recent blog on the emergence of unmanned technology in major international ports.
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