Antwerp, a soft spot for steel

Thursday 03 09 2020

The steel sector’s been having a tough time lately. Low demand, a depressed global market, the continuing trade war between the US and China … and now the Covid-19 crisis.
Does this mean you’d better pack up shop? Of course not. As the saying goes: when the going gets tough, the tough get going. But it does mean you’ll have to be smart about how you organise your business. And you’ll need partners who are dedicated to do the same. Let’s zoom in on the three ways Port of Antwerp and its stakeholders are redefining steel logistics.


1. Increasing transparency and efficiency

One of the greatest challenges in the steel industry is a lack of transparency across the supply chain. That’s how Bulkchain came to life. It’s a collaborative data sharing platform, developed by NxtPort, that brings the breakbulk market in Antwerp into the digital era, making it more efficient and transparent. 


To make sure Bulkchain catered to the needs of all stakeholders, NxtPort carried out a pilot project with major steel players. William Moyersoen, CEO at ArcelorMittal Logistics, was one of them. "By creating Bulkchain, Port of Antwerp is putting itself on the map when it comes to improving transparency and efficiency”, says Moyersoen. 


Listen to the solutions of William Moyersoen:


Watch William’s story


Find out more about Bulkchain


2. Creating value added services

In a market where customer demands are ever increasing, creating added value is a must. Port of Antwerp offers its customers plenty of specialised value added services, like weighing, labelling, and stuffing and stripping of containers. On top of that, our steel service centres provide semi industrial services like cutting, coating and shot-blasting.


One of those service centers was custom-built for Zimmer Staal. CEO Luc Cools: “Offering value added services is vital for survival. Our clients simply demand it. In Antwerp, we can offer those services on top of trading and storage – all from one, centrally located warehouse.”


See how Zimmer worked with Euroports to build its service center:


Watch the video


3. Offering multimodal transport options

Port of Antwerp is Europe’s main steel hub. And with good reason: its central location is ideal to serve customers in important markets like Germany, France and the UK. But there’s another advantage to shipping from Antwerp: every steel terminal has trimodal access to rail, road or barge transport options. 


For ArcelorMittal Logistics, the PSA Breakbulk terminal is where it’s at. “We’re always looking into alternative modes of transport. They all have their advantages and disadvantages”, says COO Frank De Fyn, while overlooking one of his steel shipments.


Discover what Frank De Fyn calls his ‘magical transport mix’:

Watch Frank’s story