Norbert Dentressangle needed to understand how many vehicles to assign to each depot in order to balance resource, reduce instances of outsourcing and lower associated costs as a means of delivering the required savings.

The Problem

As part of a varied client portfolio, Nobert Dentressangle handles the logistics for Akzo Nobel, the largest global paints and coatings company and a major producer of specialty chemicals.

As part of a 2012 bid to secure a renewal to the existing contract, Norbert had pledged to reduce the cost of the current delivery model by £1million.

In order to illustrate these savings and model the required changes through the network, Norbert Dentressangle called upon Geoplan to deliver the desired results.

The Challenge

Norbert Dentressangle needed to understand how many vehicles to assign to each depot in order to balance resource, reduce instances of outsourcing and lower associated costs as a means of delivering the required savings.

Dependent on the volume required on a particular delivery day, the number of vehicles required at each depot fluctuated wildly during a week. The challenge was therefore to achieve an equal weight per day and therefore even out the number of vehicles required, reducing the cost whilst adhering to service levels.

Certain Akzo Nobel customers had stipulated particular delivery days as per contract, providing a starting point for the wider optimisation exercise. Geoplan were therefore tasked with presenting the most optimal delivery structure across the broader customer base, factoring in frequency of deliveries and vehicle capacity.

With this in mind, the solution would have to allow or disallow consecutive delivery days dependent on the frequency of delivery days required; in order to present the best possible scenario to the customers in terms of stock utilisation and deliver the correct amount of stock to reflect the time since the last delivery.

The Solution

Geoplan adopted a staged approach to the above;

  1. Optimisation of the territories/boundaries for the depots based on the current vehicle number against weight required or capacity as it originally existed.

  2. Rules were applied to the data to pro rata the delivery quantity per client per day in accordance with the revised structure and consecutive visit constraint.

  3. A Route Scheduling exercise was then applied using a bespoke algorithm to assign a specific combination of day(s) to a given customer location, factoring in the capacity split.


The end result not only delivered the required savings but provided a robust and logical resolution to a long term issue, balancing out the capacity issue, and reducing the costs associated with outsourcing; whilst navigating a myriad of complex constraints and customer requirements.


How we can help you?

See how Geoplan mapping software and services can help you optimise territories and maximise your return. If you are interested, just call to speak to an Account Manager on +44(0)1423 569538.

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Norbert Dentressangle is a major European transport, logistics, and freight forwarding company and the third largest logistics company in the UK. Since the company began operations in 1979, it has acquired a truly international dimension with recent acquisitions of Christian Salvesen and TDG strengthening an already firm foothold across the globe.

Nobert Dentressangle focuses on keeping their customers satisfied, optimising their solutions every day, improving performance, achieving objectives and winning new markets.

Geoplan began working with TDG in 2008, delivering a solution designed to factor in weight by ton, and outbase locations to help optimise resource and reduce current levels of waste across their distribution network. The system has consistently delivered ever since, delivering £500k worth of cost savings on the first client project alone.

Geoplan Factfile

Sector: Distribution

Task: Territory Management / Route Planning

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