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Covaxx and Maersk partners to distribute global Covid-19 vaccines

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Covaxx and Maersk partners to distribute global Covid-19 vaccines. Image: Unsplash
Covaxx and Maersk partners to distribute global Covid-19 vaccines. Image: Unsplash
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COVAXX, a U.S. company developing a multitope synthetic peptide-based vaccine to fight COVID-19, announced a global logistics partnership with Maersk, one of the world’s largest shipping and integrated logistics providers. The agreement lays out a framework for all transportation and supply chain services that will be needed to deliver COVAXX’s vaccine candidate UB-612 around the world, once approved by regulatory authorities. Financial terms of the agreement are not disclosed.

COVAXX is developing UB-612 using a high precision, synthetic peptide platform to activate both B-cell and T-cell arms. The investigational vaccine is designed to mimic natural biology and preclinical studies have shown high immunogenicity and levels of neutralizing titers against SARS-CoV-2. The technology platform has been successful in commercializing blood diagnostics as well as safe and effective vaccines for infectious disease in animal health and has been tested in numerous clinical trials for other indications to date.

COVAXX is currently conducting Phase 1 clinical trials of UB-612 in Taiwan and has an agreement with the University of Nebraska Medical Center to conduct Phase 2 trials in the United States, upon regulatory approval. The company has advanced pre-commitments for over 100 million doses of UB-612 around the globe. In September, COVAXX announced an agreement with Dasa, the largest diagnostic medical company in Brazil to conduct a large-scale human efficacy clinical trial in Brazil.

The mission of COVAXX is to defeat COVID-19 and ultimately democratize health worldwide. Maersk will help fulfill this mission by overseeing all logistics activities to ensure efficient transportation to developing countries. The agreement provides for end-to-end supply chain management, packing and shipping, via air or ocean, ground transportation, warehouse storage and distribution to facilities to support COVAXX’s requirements for a pharmaceutical grade, temperature-controlled supply chain. COVAXX is planning to manufacture 100 million doses of UB-612 during early 2021, and a billion doses by the end of 2021. The design of the vaccine components will allow for the use of existing cold-chain storage and distribution channels, as the COVAXX vaccine does not require additional infrastructure such as -80⁰C freezers or liquid nitrogen tanks to store materials at extreme temperatures. “The COVAXX vaccine is unique in that it can be stored in the fridge you have at home, moved in the same trucks that deliver groceries and administered anywhere you can get a flu shot.” – Lou Reese Co-Chief Executive Officer of COVAXX.

“Our team, which now proudly includes Maersk, is committed to addressing the needs of countries where the greatest unmet needs exist today,” said Mei Mei Hu, co-Chief Executive Officer of COVAXX. “To do what is in the best interests of society at this time of the global health crisis, we are aligning with the strongest leaders in their respective industries to meet the large-scale demand and compliance requirements that we expect. It is not enough to focus on vaccine development and approvals. We must work in parallel to establish the infrastructure and partners with the strongest capabilities, like Maersk, to safely deliver our vaccine around the world.”

“Efficient and safe delivery of COVID-19 vaccines around the world is the most urgent logistics challenge we face today. A. P. Moller – Maersk is committed to working closely with COVAXX to ensure smooth end-to-end global delivery of this vaccine as soon as it becomes available,” said Rob Townley, Head of Special Project Logistics at Maersk.

“Our specialized logistics expertise and the global infrastructure of Maersk make this a perfect match.”

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Logistics & Supply Chain

Geek+ partners with system integrators, Reesink Logistic Solutions

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Geek+ partners with system integrators, Reesink Logistic Solutions. Image: Geek+
Geek+ partners with system integrators, Reesink Logistic Solutions. Image: Geek+
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Geekplus, the global AMR leader, has announced the beginning of a new partnership with one of Europe’s top system integrators, Reesink Logistic Solutions. The two companies are entering a non-exclusive cooperation covering the entire Geekplus product range and targeting primarily Northern Europe, with a focus on the Netherlands, Germany, and Poland.

“The warehouse automation market is becoming increasingly competitive and dense. In order to stay ahead of future developments, the RLS-companies have always looked for state-of-the-art technologies, to add to the product portfolio. We strongly believe that the Geekplus systems speak for themselves and open a new world of possibilities in our market. We are therefore thrilled about this new partnership and look forward to adding the AMRs to our integrated solutions,” said Gert Bossink, Vice-President of Royal Reesink and Division Director of Reesink Logistic Solutions.

“Geekplus entered the European market in 2019 and has grown the business here at a fantastic pace, accelerating the development of the e-commerce phenomenon in the territory. We are now looking into building a strong and highly-professional network of partners and are glad to have Reesink Logistic Solutions among them, with a mature and stable footprint in Europe,” said Jackson Zhang, President of Geekplus Europe.

Geekplus was founded in 2015 and scaled up very fast and now has offices in seven countries around the world. The company is a leading global AMR producer, with six product lines that solve warehouse tasks like picking, moving, sorting, forklift, shuttle and collaborative robots. Geekplus is particularly strong in the field of goods-to-person picking, with thousands of its flagship P-800 robots in operation around the world. Building upon this expertise, Geekplus has recently developed PopPick, the pinnacle of goods-to-person AMR technology.

Reesink Logistic Solutions is the European warehouse automation division of Royal Reesink, a global group of companies headquartered in the Netherlands. With over 50 years of active presence in the market and over 850 automation projects delivered, RLS is currently one of the strongest system integrators in Europe, offering a wide range of solutions, from warehouse cranes, high bay warehouses, conveyors and shuttle systems, to connecting software integration, and new technologies like AMRs.

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Environment

Daimler Truck’s first successful liquid hydrogen refuelling of the truck 

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Daimler Truck's first successful liquid hydrogen refuelling of the truck. Image: Daimler AG
Daimler Truck's first successful liquid hydrogen refuelling of the truck. Image: Daimler AG
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Daimler Truck reaches its next milestone on the road to sustainable transportation also with hydrogen-based drives. Since last year, a Mercedes-Benz GenH2 Truck fuel-cell prototype has been undergoing intensive testing – both on the in-house test track and on public roads. Daimler Truck is now putting another prototype into operation to test the use of liquid hydrogen. Political support for the development program comes from Daniela Schmitt, Minister of Economic Affairs of Rhineland-Palatinate, who opened the regional hydrogen week “WOCHE DES WASSERSTOFFS SÜD” with a test drive in Wörth am Rhein, Germany.

A newly installed prototype filling station at the development and testing centre in Wörth enables the refuelling with liquid hydrogen. Recently, Daimler Truck celebrated the first successful liquid hydrogen refuelling of the truck together with Air Liquide. During the refuelling process, cryogenic liquid hydrogen at minus 253 degrees Celsius is filled into two 40 kg tanks mounted on either side of the chassis. Thanks to the particularly good insulation of the vehicle tanks, the hydrogen can be kept at temperature for a sufficiently long time without active cooling.

Daimler Truck prefers liquid hydrogen in the development of hydrogen-based drives. In this aggregate state the energy carrier has a significantly higher energy density in relation to volume compared to gaseous hydrogen. As a result, more hydrogen can be carried, which significantly increases the range and enables comparable performance of the vehicle with that of a conventional diesel truck. The development objective of the series-ready GenH2 Truck is a range of up to 1,000 kilometres and more. This makes the truck suitable for flexible and demanding applications, especially in the important segment of heavy-duty long-haul transport. The start of series production for hydrogen-based trucks is planned for the second half of the decade.

Comprehensive commitment to hydrogen

At the same time, Daimler Truck is working together with Linde on the development of a new process for handling liquid hydrogen. Among other things, this innovative approach enables even higher storage density and easier refuelling compared to LH2. The companies plan for the first refuelling of a prototype vehicle at a pilot station in Germany in 2023. Daimler Truck and its partners are planning for a high level of transparency and openness around the relevant interfaces of the jointly developed sLH2 technology. The goal is to collaborate with other companies and associations as possible to develop their own refuelling and vehicle technologies that apply the new liquid-hydrogen standard and thereby establish a global mass market for the new process.

When it comes to infrastructure for hydrogen filling stations along important transport routes in Europe, Daimler Truck is planning to work together with the companies Shell, BP and TotalEnergies. Daimler Truck is also a shareholder in hydrogen filling station operator H2 MOBILITY Deutschland. In addition, Daimler Truck, IVECO, Linde, OMV, Shell, TotalEnergies and the Volvo Group have committed to work together to help create the conditions for the mass-market roll-out of hydrogen trucks in Europe as part of the H2Accelerate interest group.

On its path towards a CO2-neutral future Daimler Truck has clearly set its strategic course and is consistently pursuing a dual-track strategy in the electrification of its portfolio with both battery-electric and hydrogen-based drives. The ambition is to offer only new vehicles that are carbon-neutral in driving operation in its global core markets by 2039.

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Logistics & Supply Chain

CEVA Logistics opens new warehouse facility in Philippines

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CEVA Logistics opens new warehouse facility in Philippines. Image: CEVA Logistics
CEVA Logistics opens new warehouse facility in Philippines. Image: CEVA Logistics
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CEVA Logistics opened a new facility in the Ruhale area of Taguig, Philippines, offering its customers a new warehouse with advanced technology and environmental best practices. The new 14,000-square-meter facility allows CEVA to better serve existing customers, keeping pace with current demand while also remaining flexible for future capacity needs in the rapidly growing Asia Pacific region.

Designed to meet a wide range of warehousing, logistics needs

The Ruhale warehouse boasts a full suite of warehousing and logistics services for customers across a range of industries, including electronics and food and beverage. The facility features ambient, temperature-controlled and dangerous goods storage, 13 loading bays, floor staging and an optimized shelving configuration that can accommodate up to 16,000 pallet positions.

Currently employing approximately 50 people, the warehouse offers customers a full range of warehousing, distribution and value-added services, including picking and packing, labelling, bundling, re-work, tax stamping and digital bottle printing. The CEVA team can also manage return and reverse logistics and integrated B2B and B2C omni-channel operations.

The site was chosen based on its proximity to Manila’s city center, as well as for its easy access to major transportation hubs, including Manila’s international and domestic airports and seaports, and to major highways for ground transport options.

Meeting the needs of today with an eye on the future

In addition to meeting anticipated regional capacity needs, the Ruhale warehouse was also built with an eye on the future in terms of adopting warehouse innovations. Employing state-of-art technology to improve both employee health and safety and risk management, the warehouse also incorporates best practices in waste management and energy conservation to improve the facility’s carbon footprint and environmental impact. To optimize productivity, digital lean dashboards have also been implemented. Planned future enhancements include the use of wearable device scanners, drones for stock-taking and cleaning robots for facility maintenance.

Elaine Low, managing director of Southeast Asia and Pacific, CEVA Logistics, said, “I am very proud of the team’s expansion in the Philippines, and I am confident this strategic investment in one of Southeast Asia’s more vibrant markets will be the start of many more successful ventures as we continue to support customers’ supply chains with responsive logistics solutions.”

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