Business, Freight News, Logistics, Sea

Protests ‘interfering with our business’ says logistics chief

[ August 28, 2013   //   ]

Uniserve managing director, Iain Liddell said that Uniserve has not concluded any formal agreements with DP World, despite being the target of protests by the United union over union recognition. (See: ‘Unite targets Uniserve in London Gateway protest’ below.)

Activists from the union staged a protest at Uniserve’s Tilbury depot on 22 August in a continuing dispute with the nearby DP World London Gateway port, saying that it had targeted the logistics company because it had confirmed that it plans to set up operations at the new port.

The Uniserve boss said: “We have experienced at least four protests by Unite and have tried to explain our position, which must be good news for their members and the local area, but the protests continue to interfere with our business.”

Uniserve’s existing Tilbury site is six miles from London Gateway and it would be using the new port for some of its containers. The logistics operator was “the largest warehouse and e fulfilment provider in the immediate vicinity with over 750,000 sqft of modern warehousing on a 20 acre site” at the gates of Tilbury Port. Liddell added: “It is our intention to build a further 3 million sq ft of warehousing on 50 acres close to our current Tilbury operation which will create employment for nearly 1,000 people, this site will be our new UK freight head office and global centre of excellence.”

Uniserve, he said, was a major importer and exporter of containers and had made significant investments in portcentric facilities in many locations, having purchased a 28-acre plot in Felixstowe in 2009 where it is the only current major development site at that port. Over 2 million sqft of multi user warehouse specialising in wines and spirits, furniture, hanging garments, cold store, electronics and e fulfilment were being built. This he said, “will be bringing at least 500 new jobs to Felixstowe so we are being encouraged by Hutchinson ports, the carriers, the local authorities and virtually everyone.”

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