Friday, 23 September 2016

New generation of car carrying ships now able to use the expanded Panama Canal

The term "Panamax" refers to ships of a size able to use the original Panama Canal. Prior to the expansion of the canal, which opened in July this year, some ships could not use the shortcut between North and South America. They were simply too big. Therefore many ships were designed and built to a maximum, "Panamax" size.

Since the opening of the expanded canal even the worlds largest ships can travel via the canal thus saving time and money. Ship owners have been building new bigger ships to take advantage of the improved economies of scale. These are called "Post-Panamax" ships.

Hoegh Autoliners now operates the worlds largest PCTC(Pure Car & Truck Carrier) and Post-Panamax ship in the "Hoegh Target". In fact she is the first PCTC of this size to transit via the canal.

The "Hoegh Target" can carry an incredible 8500 cars and has 71400 square metres of deck space. Importantly she is very fuel efficient and Hoegh claim will halve the emissions per car that they carry.

Here are a some pictures of her in the expanded Panama Canal.



Innovative vessels like this and the expanded Panama Canal are contributing to keeping freight rates lower for shippers.
All for now,

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Trade Finance is a way to ship more inventory more often

I have been pleased to be able to help many of Depth Logistics' clients with Trade Finance to fund their import and export activity. As I have spoken to many of them I have been surprised that most haven't even heard of this type of financing but when they do the majority have embraced it even if to reduce their reliance on financing from their bank.

It can give you greater and more transparent buying and selling power and the ability to ship more inventory, more often without tying up working capital.

For the uninitiated here are more of the key benefits of Trade Finance.
  • Available for imports and exports
  • Increase your negotiating buying power by being able to pay your supplier faster
  • Export more by being able to offer your buyer credit terms
  • Approvals within 5 days with a single establishment fee
  • Competitive interest rates available with up to 90 day terms
  • Does not interfere with existing bank security arrangements or letters of credit
  • Security is taken over the goods and a director’s guarantee only
  • Easy shipping and marine insurance arrangements via Depth Logistics
  • Credit facility is available in multiple foreign currencies
  • Bridge the gap between your shipping and other finance facilities such as Debtor Finance
Depth Logistics works in tandem with Depth Capital to provide this service so please contact me if you'd like to learn more about it.

All for now,

+Brad Skelton

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Ross Radich is back with our team at Depth Logistics

In the past month I have been extremely happy to have re-joined forces with +Ross Radich who is back working with the familiar team and clients at Depth Logistics as our Biosecurity Consultant.

Ross was originally a New Zealand Quarantine officer before joining my team about 12 years or so ago. He is a true gentleman, very reliable, diligent and always gets even the most difficult jobs done in a good humored manner. It's a sincere privilege to work with him.

During this time Ross has lived and travelled literally all over the world working with our clients and their suppliers making sure that cargo destined for Australia and New Zealand is prepared before shipping to minimise quarantine risks and achieve the smoothest possible clearance on arrival. In fact Ross has a perfect record on cargo he has inspected and prepared with not a single re-export order ever being issued.

The characters he has met, the places he has gone and the stories Ross has collected along the way are often amazing and funny. Ross written a book of them in fact and it's available on Amazon.


I really enjoyed reading the book and recalling many of the situations and stories. It's a great and entertaining read with good insights into the great work Ross has done not only for our clients, but in the big picture, in helping to minimise quarantine risks for Australia and New Zealand.
I hope you might buy a copy so we can help add "Best Selling Author" to Ross' list of accomplishments.
All for now,

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

The 20-Year-Old With a Plan to Rid the Sea of Plastic

As the branding of Depth Industries suggests the team and I all have a strong affinity with the ocean.

I came across this amazing project that promises to clean up the oceans of the estimated 150 million tonnes of plastic floating out there that is even gradually entering our own food chain through seafood. Check out this YouTube clip.




A simple but brilliant idea!

All for now,

+Brad Skelton 

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Please help me to help the homeless at the Vinnies CEO Sleepout

The latest figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that 105,237 people in Australia are experiencing homelessness, with 60% of those under the age of 35. Perhaps surprising to many people is that 44% of these are women, 13% are under the age of 12. These figures in a lucky country like Australia are disgraceful.

On 23 June 2016 I will join with Brisbane’s community leaders and CEOs to spend one night on the streets as part of the Vinnies CEO Sleepout. We will experience homeless life in an endeavour to raise awareness and crucial funds for St Vincent’s homeless services.


Last year I raised $1,520.00 through donations from clients, suppliers, family and friends. This year I am aiming to better this amount and hope you will join with me to do so. Please click here to sponsor me and donate to support this great cause.

Thank you!

Friday, 20 May 2016

Global ship traffic as seen from space

I came across this fascinating (1min 40sec) YouTube clip of one weeks global shipping traffic as seen from space courtesy of Fleetmon.

Take a look...



All for now,

+Brad Skelton 

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Freight forwarders quotation trick #69

My team and I at Depth Logistics always give our clients comprehensive and fully transparent quotes that they can reliably budget on. This is a non-negotiable thing for us.

That being said, increasingly we are competing against operators who are at best convenient in how they present their quotations, or at worst, plainly try to mislead shippers about the true landed costs just to secure the booking.

One trick we see nearly every day relates to Australian Customs and Quarantine import charges charges which are published on government websites. Specifically EEC(Electronic Entry Charges) and DAWR(Dept of Agriculture and Water Resources) entry and inspection fees.



Unscrupulous freight forwarders will not quote these actual charges in dollar terms to a client as if they did it increases their quotation per shipment by sometimes A$2-300.00+ depending on the cargo type and import declarations required. Instead they say things like "Plus government charges" or "Plus EEC and DAWR fees" if the client is lucky.

Price is an important driver of most clients decisions as to who they trust to move their cargo. When they are making their decision they innocently compare quotes where a professional forwarder actual identifies the exact costs, because you can, against another operator who intentionally is vague(Plus Govt charges). They total the various dollar amounts listed in the quotes and compare who is the most competitive.

It is not until they get billed and find that these charges were not identified specifically in the original quotation that they realise they have actually paid too much overall.

To make matters worse operators who do this usually add EEC onto the import duty and GST on their invoice to disguise the charges further which they know will often go unnoticed by the client. If they get found out and queried later they hide behind "But our quote said Plus Govt charges" and the poor client is snookered.

So be aware of this freight forwarders quotation trick and insist that whoever you get quotations from always identifies all charges in dollar terms so you can compare apples with apples.

If you need any further clarification or want to check what you might have been billed previously, I'd be pleased to help.

+Brad Skelton