Multimodal was launched in 2008 as a forum for shippers, manufacturers and retailers to develop more sustainable supply chains by optimising the “mode” of transport. Since then, the event has grown and evolved to encompass resilience, technology and “people-power” without forgetting its Green credentials.

Robert Jervis, Event Director at Multimodal, speaks to Warehouse & Logistics News.

What are your best-known products/solutions/services?

The Multimodal Exhibition was established in 2008 and has grown into the industry’s largest UK, Ireland and Northern Europe’s annual meeting place for freight transport, logistics and supply chain management and logistics. It is the industry’s meeting place where 9000 cargo owners and shippers attend to find ways to improve their supply chains and discover innovative ideas to solve their transport and logistics issues. Over 200 companies exhibit at Multimodal offering solutions across all modes together with the latest technological advances to help you make your supply chains more cost effective and more efficient.

The Multimodal Awards held on the first evening of the Show recognise excellence in air, road, rail, maritime, and freight forwarding services and are voted for by the thousands of readers of the Multimodal Newsletter and exhibitors & visitors to Multimodal. This makes them one of the fairest industry Awards as companies are nominated and voted for by the industry for the industry through an independent Awards nomination and voting system. We’re absolutely delighted to annouce that we have sold out of seats and are operating a waiting list.

Which industry sectors are your customers in and which ones are growing fastest?

Multimodal represents every logistics sector under one roof, and is characterised by key vertical sectors, including manufacturing, retail, agribusiness, chemical, automotive, electronics, FMCG, food & drink, fashion, pharmaceuticals, construction, aerospace, energy, real estate, recycling, paper/print and perishables, amongst others, whilst horizontally, the show covers all modes of transportation, including sea, road, rail, air and inland waterways.

What are your most recent product innovations?

Multimodal introduced the BIFA Village in 2021 providing freight forwarders with an easy economical way to participate in the show. This was an enormous success and has doubled in size for 2022. We’ve also forged partnerships with the Institute of Export and International Trade (IOE&IT) and the Careers Colleges Trust/Skills for Logistics. IOE&IT, as a provider of education and training to professionalise the UK’s international traders, will also be running two days of CPD accredited free to attend seminars aimed at their membership of small/medium shippers. Whilst the CCT collaboration will further enhance our third day focus on the logistics industry future workforce addressing recruitment, apprenticeships, training, education and the skills gaps. The CCT support students into great careers, and specifically to fill the Skills Gaps that exist in their local areas – the Logistics industry as one of the top growing sectors is a major focus.

What are the major trends and developments affecting your category and your customers, and how are you responding?

Multimodal has three streams of free to attend seminars open to all participants ranging from manufacturers to LSPs which address the latest trends across the industry. Supply chain sustainability and resilience is a key concern of the industry and is the main theme running through the seminars, looking at people, tech and innovation as essentials to future proof logistics. Integrated logistics is becoming is the new normal, with vertically integrated companies disrupting the traditional supply chain models – again this is something being addressed in the seminars.

Can you tell us about any recent customer contracts and how you helped the customer meet their challenges?

75% of our exhibitors/floorspace is booked year on year by the same companies so I think that speaks for itself. One major exhibitor for example met a new customer in the early years of the show, who has now grown to become their largest customer.

How does business in 2022 compare to previous years? What’s your strategy for succeeding in the current climate?

Multimodal in 2021 was a little smaller than usual with some companies not being permitted to exhibit due to Covid, plus we held 2021 in October rather than in our usual Spring slot which is a busy time for the supply chain industry. The buzz and fizz on site at the Show was superb, it was great to be back to face-to-face and it showed! Multimodal 2022 is 25% bigger and just about sold-out, and visitor pre-reg soaring ahead – so all in all with a sold out Awards evening and a bigger show all round – it’s going to be a wonderful three days!

What’s the latest news from your company?

Multimodal is also a portal for industry news which is hosted on our website and updated as soon as the news breaks; a digest of the week’s news is pulled through to a weekly newsletter delivered free to inboxes every Monday morning.

Can you tell us about any areas where you’re currently making technical advances eg safety, sustainability, environment?

Like many companies, we are honing our ESG policies and are undergoing a major audit of our successes so far. Safety training is ubiquitous – as safety is a cornerstone of our operations

Are you investing in staff training and skills development?

We continually invest in training – from new technology, sales and marketing, and increasingly into ESG.

 

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