FRENCH FIRMS USE NETWORK TO LOWER COSTS
Oct 1, 2000 12:00 PM, MODERN BULK TRANSPORTER STAFF
Multi Transports, a French trucking company; Jean-Paul Michelon, a specialist on road information technology; and France Telecom, a telecommunications operator, developed a tool that makes use of the GSM Data radio communications network. Known as the Agat System, this tool is distributed worldwide by Michelon's company GIT (Groeneveld Information Technology), a joint Franco-Dutch company.
The on-board computer and radio communications network allows the driver to indicate load and delivery status to company headquarters. The volume of freight remaining on board the vehicle also is indicated. The transport company then can invoice without delay and send the driver new instructions, with the route optimized by computer.
French and European freight companies intend to offer tracking of their goods via Intranet-Extranet communication networks and on board computers placed in the trucks. They have organized the Sicadom project within the framework of the European Eureka research program to achieve this. This project includes Multi Transports; GIT; the French software company Deltis; the Belgian service provider Neosys; and the laboratory CEDITI (Center for the Dissemination of Information Technology), which produces Intranet enterprise software. With financing of about $2.2 million, the project is due for completion at year-end.
www.computrucks.com COMPUTRUCKS.COM DEBUTS Terry Young, owner of Volvo and GMC Truck Center of Carolina and former executive vice-president of Volvo Trucks of North America, has launched Computrucks.com, a web site where a buyer may order a new heavy-duty or medium-duty truck online from a franchised dealer.
Computrucks.com is a joint venture between the Comp-U-Truck database of used heavy trucks on the Internet and a network of heavy truck dealers. Dealer representatives from each manufacturer will be shareholders of the company and hold seats on the board of directors.
Computrucks.com will cater specifically to owner-operators and small fleet owners, who comprise about 38% of the heavy-truck market.
www.at-track.com HIGHWAYMASTER CHANGES CORPORATE NAME HighwayMaster Communications Inc, a provider of wireless-based vehicle fleet management and intelligent mobile asset-tracking solutions to commercial trucking and service vehicle fleets, has changed its corporate name to @Track Communications Inc. The name @Track reflects the company's strategy to integrate Internet technologies into its network and product offerings.
www.transportcentral.com WEBTRANSPORT OFFERS MATCHING EXCHANGE Dallas TX-based WebTransport, a transportation business service provider, has launched its beta-testing phase of an online trading exchange that levels the playing field for small- to-mid-size carriers and shippers. TransportCentral.com reduces operating costs and creates efficiencies by offering a matching exchange and business management portal. TransportCentral Exchange, which comprises the proprietary applications within TransportCentral.com, includes the online freight matching and decision support function of the site that will go live in June 2000.
Through an online request and profiling process, TransportCentral.com seamlessly and in real-time connects carriers and shippers. This allows shippers to secure commitments and monitor transportation services faster and at a lower cost. Furthermore, carriers can better manage their existing business as well as identify new shipping lanes and opportunities for growth.
www.Liveload.Net PROFIT TOOLS HELPS LEVEL FIELD Profit Tools has released its latest product, a service that allows small- and medium-size trucking companies to offer customer service over the Internet.
LiveLoad.net allows carriers to provide data and services to customers, including billing information, shipment history, shipment tracking, and pick-up-and-delivery confirmations. To participate, carriers will need operations software capable of exporting flat files or text reports to a PC. Profit Tools says the requirements of most small trucking companies can be met for less than $7 a day, including hosting their web sites.
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