MYBOXPLACE is a digital platform and an intelligent solution to optimize the transport of empty containers by trucks in the Port of Hamburg.
The digital platform MYBOXPLACE can be used by packers, forwarders, importers, exporters or container shipping companies. Traditionally, packers or forwarders have brought their import containers to an empty container depot after unpacking. The containers remained there until they were needed again by other logistic companies for their export activities. The process with MYBOXPLACE is much more streamlined. As the follow-up booking of the container happens directly and digitally, the container does not have to be transported to an intermediate storage depot and picked up again from there. The packer offers its unpacked import container as an available empty container online via the platform for a certain period. If another logistics provider reserves the container within the specified period, the container can be transported directly to the next user without an intermediate stop at the empty container depot. This direct exchange saves at least the transport to the container depot and therewith CO2 emissions accordingly. It is even more advantageous for socalled "self-re-users" if available import containers are reused directly for export by the same company. The physical transport and the CO2 emission is completely avoided.
The Hamburg Port Authority (HPA) commissioned IBM to create and develop the digital platform VIRTUAL DEPOT as predecessor of MYBOXPLACE for an order volume of 125.000 Euro. The operation of the platform requires very low personal resources.
Evidence of success
In the first year, the VIRTUAL DEPOT / MYBOXPLACE achieved a decrease of around 5.000 truck trips with empty containers in the Port of Hamburg and thus savings of approx. 41 tons CO2 emissions.
While the utilisation of VIRTUAL DEPOT was open to all actors involved in the supply chain in Hamburg MYBOXPLACE is only available for DAKOSY business partners. There is a strong competition targeting long distance hinterland traffic and unfortunately a low commitment of the shippiing companies.
Potential for learning or transfer
Considering that in general handling processes of import and export containers in ports are very similar worldwide a platform like MYBOXPLACE can be used throughout Europe and is not limited to the port area of Hamburg. The implementation of a similar platform is certainly easier in cases where local port authorities or digital service providers like DAKOSY already offer successful digital services and solutions along the supply chain.
Similarly, possible traffic reduction and CO2 savings depend on the individual port structure and the distances covered by trucks with empty containers between the various actors. The greater the distance to be covered, the higher are possible CO2 reductions.