Digital CT booking portal Modility starts pilot operation
Modility is launching operations as a new booking and brokerage portal for combined transport (CT) within Europe. At www.modility.com, CT operators such as Hellmann Worldwide Logistics can now market their transport capacities and forwarders can easily find and book them. Hellmann has been supporting the digital start-up as a development partner since day 1.
The new portal is the result of a cooperation between several market participants and aims to simplify access to combined freight transport as a climate-friendly transport alternative. The pilot phase is being supported on a pro-rata basis by the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) as part of the 'Future of Rail Freight' funding program.
With Modility, users can for the first time find, plan and book free transport capacities of CT operators directly online via an open marketplace. "This is about a pan-European, neutral solution," says Ralf-Charley Schultze, president of the European CT industry association UIRR. "The Corona crisis shows us that the dynamics in combined transport are increasing and the need for short-term and flexible transport bookings is growing, not least in the pre-carriage and onward carriage by road."
"We want to move more freight traffic from road to rail. With the federal program 'Future Rail Freight', we support companies that want to invest in digitalization, automation, and modern vehicle technology."
With easy access to intermodal transport, Modility is intended to contribute to the necessary modal shift and strengthen CT as a high-performance and environmentally friendly transport system. For this reason, the project is being funded by the BMVI. Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer: "We want to get more freight traffic off the roads and onto the rails. With the federal program 'Future Rail Freight', we are supporting companies that want to invest in digitization, automation, and modern vehicle technology. Our program opens the door to new services, new customers, and new markets. An effective innovation and investment accelerator for environmentally friendly rail logistics."
A solution from the market for the market
The project was initiated by Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA), which spun off Modility as a corporate spin-off in July 2020 and developed it together with twelve development partners from the transport and logistics industry. "Modility was developed by the market for the market," emphasizes Lars Neumann, Director Logistics, Strategy, and Business Development at HHLA. "The companies involved represent a cross-section of the CT players, so the multi-layered needs and challenges of the market were taken into account right from the start."
New potential for operators and freight forwarders
For Hellmann as a CT operator, Modility opens up an additional online sales channel that can be used to market routes and residual capacities at daily updated prices and increase train capacity utilization. "As a development partner from the very beginning, we were involved from the very beginning and are pleased that with Modility we are creating a digital showcase through which we can offer our customers further innovative access to CT. The tool also enables us to reach new customer segments," says Dirk Baerbock, Head of Multimodal Solutions Europe at Hellmann Worldwide Logistics. After just a few clicks, the offered relations can be viewed and booked by users. The operator has full control over prices, capacities, and bookings at all times via a dashboard.
Freight forwarders can use Modility to find CT connections, receive daily updated offers according to individual requirements, and book the right transport option in a straightforward manner. With easy access to transport alternatives, they are thus allowed to react flexibly to fluctuating cargo volumes and short-term requests. The booking process is handled via an intuitive user interface modeled on proven booking portals from the B2C sector. The system advantages of intermodal transports are thus also accessible to companies without CT experience.
In the future, transport companies will also be able to offer pre- and on-carriage services directly via Modility, thus creating additional transport options on the first and last mile.
Modility will continue to be developed jointly in the future
As of today's go-live, users can already view and book numerous relations via the portal. Modility is free to use; fees are only charged for successfully arranged transports. During pilot operation, the solution will be further developed in line with demand together with Hellmann and other market players. Interested and potential users can find out about the benefits and register on the website www.modility.com.