Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

DB Schenker opens low-carbon hub in Norway

Steve Rogerson
May 21, 2109

Digitisation and sustainability are key for the logistics sector, according to DB Schenker CEO Jochen Thewes speaking at the opening of the firm’s low-carbon city distribution centre in Oslo.
The Oslo City Hub is a centrally located terminal that should reduce CO2 emissions of city goods distribution by 80%, using electric cars and e-bikes. The hub is part of Electric City, the Oslo district's focus on activities associated with its status as European Green Capital 2019.
DB Schenker is aiming to achieve zero emissions in all city distribution in Norway by the end of 2020. The Oslo City Hub project is the first blueprint of how to achieve this.
“Digitisation and more sustainable solutions will be key competitive factors for future logistics,” said Thewes. “We at DB Schenker already started this future. With the low-carbon Oslo City Hub, we are taking another step to dramatically reduce CO2 emissions in our day-to-day logistics business.”
The hub is at Filipstadkaia in the centre of Oslo. The building is being constructed from containers and is organised for effective goods handling. The building will cover 457m2. All goods will be delivered by electric lorries and e-bikes.
DB Schenker says it has a high commitment to sustainability. As a member of the EV100 initiative, it aims to replace diesel drivetrains by electric ones in collection and distribution transport by 2030.
The logistics firm is in its partnership with Swedish start-up Einride and has its fully electric and autonomous lorry in commercial operations. In air and ocean, DBS is partnering with its carriers bilaterally and in different cooperation platforms on sustainable transportation.
At last week’s Vivatech start-up event in France, DB Schenker said in the future it would connect and analyse the data of its entire supply chain from warehouse to goods transport.
An IoT platform for all data points could provide users with real-time transparency of their entire ordering and delivery process. In addition to tracking a consignment in real time, this would improve the efficiency of route planning and increase the safety and quality of goods transport.
The company was looking for start-up partners at the Paris innovation trade fair to collaborate in the development of the corresponding IoT architecture and develop business models on the basis of the networked data obtained.
"Data have now become an essential component of the logistics business," said Markus Sontheimer, chief IT and digitalisation officer of DB Schenker. "We are therefore consistently focusing on new technologies such as blockchain and internet of things in order to further improve the quality and convenience of our logistics services and perhaps be able to offer completely new services in the future."
With regard to the IoT, DB Schenker intends to equip classic logistics infrastructure such as freight containers, lorries or department stores with the appropriate sensor technology. In the future, this will be used to record systematically all data points of a logistics shipment such as position, temperature, humidity, incidence of light or vibration. All data are to be bundled centrally via a separate IoT platform.
DB Schenker says it is implementing the next step in its digitalisation strategy through a cooperation with start-ups to set new digital standards in global logistics through the integration of innovative partners and the use of many years of logistics experience.