Tuesday 10 March 2015
News from UIC Members

Belgium: Swiss Xpress – fast and competitive single wagon transport between Belgium and Switzerland

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On 4 March 2015 SNCB Logistics launched the Swiss Xpress, a fast and direct railway connection for single wagon transport between Belgium and Switzerland. From Antwerp North and Basel all service points in Belgium and Switzerland can be reached. By developing such international connections, in combination with optimised and reliable rail offerings and closer collaboration with customers, the company is aiming for commercial growth with better reliability, faster connections and smarter information.

The Swiss Xpress runs three round trips a week between Antwerp (Mon, Wed, Fri) and Basel (Tues, Thurs, Sat). There are fixed timetables in order to provide customers with a clear insight on departure and arrival times. The reliability of the service has increased by reducing the number of stops and therefore the number of shunting movements during the route. The 4.5 days transit time is significantly lower than the current offering, which is more than 7 days. Finally, the customer can count on detailed and real-time information about its goods and wagons.
SNCB Logistics is running the Swiss Xpress in collaboration with the Xrail member SBB Cargo for feeder services in Switzerland.

SNCB Logistics focuses on the customer
Sam Bruynseels, Chief Commercial Officer SNCB Logistics, said: “Speed and reliability is what our industry customers need. They want to know exactly when their goods will arrive at their destination. With the Swiss Xpress we offer our clients exactly that: a fast and direct connection for SWL (The Single Wagon Load) that runs following a clear timetable. Before, during and after the trip, we feed them with real time information. Our customer Imerys has been using the Swiss Xpress since its start in January. Imerys and other clients appreciate that the quality has been impeccable and that we deliver what we promised.”

Geert Pauwels, CEO SNCB Logistics, added: “We have come a long way with SNCB Logistics. Over the last years we have put a lot of effort into restructuring, cost-efficiencies and improving quality. In 2014 we confirmed the financial turnaround with an operational profit (EBITDA: Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization) that’s significantly higher than in 2013, when we made an operational profit for the first time in history. With that, we have improved our result for the fifth year in a row. This has allowed us to shift our focus from transformation towards our customers, the market and product development. The Swiss Xpress is a first launch of a better, faster and smarter service offering. There is more to come in the following months.”

What is Single Wagon Load? SWL refers to complete freight trains composed of single wagon consignments of freight from different manufacturers. It allows customers to transport wagon load volumes of their products and raw materials to and from different locations such as production plants, ports and the European hinterland.

(Source: SNCB)

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