PortShuttle was set up in 2015 to organise the efficient exchange by rail of containers between terminals in the port of Rotterdam. Together with Martijn Loois, Linda Borsodi serves as joint Managing Director of PortShuttle Rotterdam. Borsodi: “In the past, we handled everything in-house, using our own shuttle that drives past the different terminals.
Nowadays, we take more and more advantage of space available on the trains of partner rail operators – which tend to call on multiple terminals too. We call this the Virtual PortShuttle Concept. Based on this concept, we are creating a network of exchange options via rail in Rotterdam.
Although we will occasionally turn to inland shipping or road haulage where required. For example, when containers need to be transferred to empty depots that aren’t connected to the rail network.”
From three to twenty
The flexibility offered by such solutions has proven a major stimulus for PortShuttle’s growth. Borsodi: “We ourselves make three round trips per week. But via our partners we have a total of around 20 scheduled services per week at our disposal. That makes all the difference! Thirty per cent of the transported volume is exchanged between the various Maasvlakte terminals. The remaining seventy per cent is on other routes – primarily the one that runs from Rail Service Center Rotterdam to Maasvlakte and vice versa.”
On behalf of the Virtual PortShuttle Concept, the Rotterdam firm also handles the administrative settlement of containers moved in and out of the area by rail for partner rail operators. Taken together, these different arrangements explain why over the past year, PortShuttle could chalk up its first six-figure total in terms of TEU volume.
Coevorden and CER
PortShuttle intends to maintain this positive trend in 2021 by expanding its network of rail partners – creating even more exchange capacity and opportunities. “For example, we see the shuttle service operated by Bentheimer Eisenbahn toward the EuroTerminal in Coevorden as an interesting addition to our network.” Although the team is also looking further afield. Borsodi: “This year, we hope to get clarity as to whether or not we’ll be appointed as a service operator for the Container Exchange Route (CER) at Maasvlakte. Naturally, that would be perfectly in line with the goals that we set ourselves at the time of our establishment.”