Skip to main content

Demonstration and market replication of Innofreight’s innovative rail logistics equipment for the raw material supply of the steel industry

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - ITECCO Demo (Demonstration and market replication of Innofreight’s innovative rail logistics equipment for the raw material supply of the steel industry)

Reporting period: 2017-10-01 to 2019-03-31

"In recent decades, the railway transport business has faced critical problems which lead to a clear trend from rail freight transport to road freight transport. Rail freight is often inflexible, underperforming and thus unattractive in comparison to road transport, especially since the rolling stock is overaged within Europe, the logistic management is inefficient and the wagons are very specialized with a very narrow range of utilization.

The overall objectives and goals of the project are:
• becoming one of the main market players in the supply of the steel industry,
• establishing the innovative technologies InnoWaggon, different containers and unloading solutions as standard equipment within the iron and steel branch,
• and addressing the transport of all raw materials and semi-finished products,
• increasing the railway logistics performance in comparison to the ""state of the art"" tremendously.

During the project period, Innofreight was able to introduce innovative logistic solutions based on railway transport and combined transport for the supply of the steel industry to potential costumers all over Europe. The company structure was changed and new Sales and Service Companies were introduced, as well as new departments and new processes. Innofreight got a lot of feedback from stakeholders and integrated them into the business processes in order to improve the service level and also to create new business opportunities. Furthermore, an increase of the human resources and a fresh setup of the quality management system took place.
We were able to proof the exceptional performance of our logistic solutions by several full-scale demonstrations at steel mills and a number of smaller demonstration activities. For instance, our container and pallet systems, as well as the adapted versions of the InnoWaggon as wide gauge version and 90 ft version and the patented Innofreight unloading solutions (Forklift Truck with turning device and Stationary Unloading Machine). Longterm demonstrations lead to a step by step increase in the net-load, because the innovative technology used and because of adapted loading procedures and lead altogether to e.g. a plus in the net-load of up +40% in some destinations and transported goods and a well functioning, stable logistic performance.

Several new businesses within the iron and steel branch could be started already and some are in intensive negotiations.

With our activities we could push towards a disruptive and well functioning, reliable and highly performing supply system for one of the basic key industries for Europe. The new logistic supply systems of Innofreight help to lower the productions costs for the steel industry and secures long term jobs in this branch and adds to a lower use of ressources in the transport and minimizes the negative external effects by strengthening the evironmentally friendly railway transport system.
"
"The project was divided into seven work packages, where each was focused on a specific topic.
WP 2 dealt with ‘processes and IT’. In the second half of the project, the ERP software BMD NTCS was chosen and implemented. Another point was about the definition of roles, processes and the specification of the needs for HR development. A risk analysis took place, as well as an ISO 9001:2015 certification.
The team working in WP 3 focused on the new organizational organigram (group structure, including functional levels in the individual countries), including responsibilities that were defined in newly elaborated processes (incl. decision matrix). For the new employees a whole new training system was introduced.
WP 4 was mainly dealing with demonstration activities, where the innovative solutions could be shown under real ""environment"". The Demonstration activities were extended to include other ‘short term demonstration projects, e.g. for semi-finished products (Figure 1). In these two years demonstration projects with different and future business partners took place. (Figure 2: RockTainer-Sand for slag-sand transport; Figure 3: Coal transport with WT-XM and InnoWaggons for steelmill voest in Donawitz / Leoben). Furthermore, the certification process for the 90 ft version and wide gauge version was successfully finished.
The goal of work package 5 was the dissemination of the results of the demonstration projects and to inform the market players (stakeholders) about the innovative offer of Innofreight.
Articles were published in different magazines, e.g. ‘Forbes’ and ‘International Transport Journal‘ (ITJ). WP 5 also cared about the preparation and realization of advertisement videos. The homepage was setup freshly and the participation at different fairs (transport&logistic Munich 2017, Innotrans Berlin 2018, etc.), conferences (TRA Vienna 2018, etc.) and railshows was organized.
In WP 6 the team created a new budgeting structure and fixed the capital needs for the next years. Together with all other activities Innofreight sees big growth potential for the next years in turnover, number of employees and invested capital. For the future cash needs a new financing strategy was created.
In the first half of the ITECCO Demo project the team of work package 7 dealt with the evaluation of different processes and a new modular contract system was formed.

Innofreight got the chance to develop from a SME to a bigger company through the support within the ITECCO-project that functioned like an enabling catalysator for this evolutionary process."
"During the project period Innofreight was able to conquer the steel branch as a new market covering all main in- and outgoing materials. The demonstration activities were extended to include ‘short term demonstration projects’, during which we were able to show potential costumers like e.g. VR, voestalpine Linz, ArcelorMittal, HKM, Salzgitter Mannesmann Grobblech and DB, the fast, reliable and higly performing Innofreight solutions.
The InnoWaggon family was extended by the 90 ft version and the wide gauge version which expands the market reach to the wide gauge area and to extra long goods like pipeline tubes.

A higher number of new staff members were hired already during the project (+33,8 FTE's from the start of ""ITECCO-Demo"" till the finish) and we expect a continuous increase for the next years.
The whole new marketing and dissemination strategy was established that lead to a modern and internationalized homepage concept. Further on, new marketing and training videos were produced.
The completely renewed contract structure allows a save and well set growths on the international level.
As a conclusion the whole company is proud that the first step into an important future market could be made by convincing business partners with disruptive innovative logistic solutions. Innofreight is well prepared for further growths in the next years.
"
Steel Pallets for semi-finished products of the steel industry
RockTainer_Sand for slag sand demonstration at unloading place Rohrdorf
coal transport of demo train for voestalpine