Beijing Solee Cold Chain Logistics Co., Ltd.
Beijing, China Site Visit
December 3, 2014
Mr. Thomas Sun, President
Beijing Solee Cold Chain Logistics Co., Ltd. is a medium-sized logistics company focused on the cold chain. The company was founded in 2007. Its sister company, Beijing Solee Technology Co., Ltd., was founded in 2004. The founding business was providing cold chain equipment to pharmaceutical and vaccine manufactories. After providing equipment to its customers, President, Mr. Thomas Sun found there was great demand in the cold chain logistics market; therefore, Beijing Solee Cold Chain Logistics Co., Ltd. (Solee CCL) for cold chain logistics was established. Currently, there are 130 employees working in the company including its headquarters in Beijing and branch offices in Shanghai and Wuhan. With ten years of cold chain experience in pharmaceuticals, vaccines and biological sources, Solee CCL is a key player in China market.
Solee CCL provides both truckload (TL) and less-than truckload (LTL) cold chain services. Solee CCL owns 25 refrigerated trucks for long distance transportation. The main lanes are among the main city gateways including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Chongqing. All shipments to and from Northeastern China (Haerbin, Changchun, Shenyang) are transshipped via Beijing. Solee CCL has regional distribution centers (RDCs) in main gateway cites. For all TL shipments, Solee CCL can arrange the trucking from door-to-door directly, if required. For all LTL shipments, Solee CCL picks up the goods from shipper’s warehouse using its own truck from origin RDC to destination RDC. We can consider this as consolidation for cold chain. From the destination RDC to consignee’s warehouse, the shipment delivery will be shipped via LTL. Usually, Solee CCL delivers four, five or even many more shipments with the same truck, like milk-run service.
The sale point for Solee CCL is the equipment unit as a cooler box, and the smart solution for the packaging. Usually, Solee CCL’s packaging solution ensures that the equipment units can keep the temperature under control for seven days or more. According to Mr. Sun, it is easy for the unit to keep the temperature under -20°C with a time limitation, but it is not easy for the unit to keep temperature between 2°C and 8°C with a time limitation. Most of vaccines and pharmaceuticals should maintain temperature between 2°C and 8°C, so a tailored packaging solution is important when using the unit. For example, a unit from Beijing to Shanghai is different than a unit from Beijing to Guangzhou as different destinations with different temperatures. A unit to keep temperature under -20°C for five days is different than a unit to keep temperature under -20°C for eight days.
Solee CCL’s customer list includes China National Biotec, North China Pharmaceutical, BioKangtai and other well-known Chinese companies. There are more than a hundred companies in long-term cooperation with Solee CCL. For most domestic shipments, Solee CCL arranges the trucking service with some shipments handled via domestic air, if needed. Other than domestic shipments, Solee CCL handles export shipments via international air with CIF (cost, insurance, freight) terms to the destination airport. Solee CCL doesn’t have overseas agents as the company is focused on domestic business.
In the past years, Solee CCL has had good growth in cargo volume year-on-year. In order to save cost, Solee CCL plans to open a distribution center warehouse in Wuhan as Wuhan is in Central China, a perfect geographical location. The DC warehouse is around 15,000 square meters. As there is great potential for cold chain logistics in China market, some global 3PLs, including couriers, had M&A discussions with Solee CCL years before, but it was not the right time for Solee CCL. Now, Solee CCL has a good record and is open to any investor with interest in cold chain logistics.