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Discharging agribulk from a cargo vessel

Associated British Ports has successfully completed the rollout of a new Terminal Operating System (TOS) – CommTrac v4 – at the port in Newport, South Wales.

This new system, which is supplied by TBA, has been deployed to help streamline the management of AgriBulk operations at ABP’s second-largest bulk handling port in their Wales and Short Sea Ports region.

This introduction in Newport is the fifth deployment of this system across the ABP network, having previously launched at Teignmouth, Hull (two terminals) and King’s Lynn, and is the latest example of ABP increasingly digitising the operations of supply chains through its ports across all cargo types.

This is producing benefits of visibility and efficiency both for our customers and ABP through advanced operational data recording and real-time optimisation of non-containerised cargo management. See a full list of CommTrac v4 capabilities for ABP’s Port of Newport below.

Tom Batchelor, Head of Operations at ABP’s Port of Newport said:

“ABP is committed to making ongoing and significant investments to help ensure ABP’s customers benefit from the most efficient port operations – across all of our ports, and whatever the cargo.

The latest rollout of CommTrac V4 at ABP’s Port of Newport highlights how ABP is working hard to deliver this.  Since 2019, ABP has invested approximately 50 million in its infrastructure, digitalisation and sustainability measures in Wales alone, and our customers and hauliers at Newport have already given us positive feedback on the new system and reports.

We look forward to building on the system to improve bulk handling going forward."

The successful deployment of CommTrac V4 at ABP Newport was achieved thanks to the strong partnership and comprehensive framework agreement between ABP and TBA Group.

David Trueman, Managing Director of TBA Group said:

"The powerful alliance between ABP and TBA Group has enabled us to seamlessly collaborate and establish a sturdy framework agreement that fully aligns with ABP's goal of delivering CommTrac to their bulk cargo terminals. With the successful deployment of CommTrac in five ABP terminals, we continue to fine-tune the system, resulting in increased value and reduced lead times. ABP's vision to standardise operational processes is fully supported by the versatile CommTrac solution."

The completion of this project provides the following capabilities to the future operations of the port:

  • A record of vessel details, berthing location, and date/time information.
  • The creation of manifest data in the CommTrac v4 system.
  • Clearly formatted and highly detailed collection tickets for customers and receivers.
  • Reports created in significantly less time than previously and with richer detail.
  • The ability to quickly view current/future Delivery Orders for improved turnaround time with collections.
  • The ability to bring previous haulier details/DO Details/Stock Allocation onto booking out screen in order to further reduce turnaround time for collections.
  • An accurate record of stock held for each customer and location on the port estate.
  • The ability to provide information to customers on stock level to a greater degree of accuracy and confidence.
  • Improved quality assurance when assembling discharge orders and automatic stock-control updates.
  • Improved visibility of commodity dwell time on port and an improved ability to evidence billing events.
  • The ability to capture ‘operational events’ such as recording asset breakdowns, weather events, and ops teams breaks.
  • Improved ability to measure operational KPI’s and evidence effects of continuous operational improvement initiatives.