Displaying items by tag: AV Dawson

AV Dawson, owner and operator of Port of Middlesbrough has acquired the dry bulk business, Cobra Middlesbrough, as part of its strategic investment and expansion plans.

The acquisition will see Port of Middlesbrough’s footprint grow by eight acres, unlocking further opportunities on what was previously a 100-acre site.

Cobra, based on North Road in Middlesbrough, operates a dry bulk handling terminal with processing and packing facilities. The company’s main area of focus and expertise is in the salt market, handling and distributing thousands of tonnes of salt every year.   

Much of the salt stored at the facility has been mined locally. Some of the salt is used in animal feeds, but the majority is distributed to councils across the country for gritting roads during the winter.

Cobra also provides a range of services for the farming industry. The business receives screens and bags polyhalite – which, like salt, is mined. This is then used as a fertiliser in the agriculture sector in the UK and overseas.  

Salt stocks at Cobra Middlesbrough, an 8-acre site recently acquired by AV Dawson Salt stocks at Cobra Middlesbrough, an 8-acre site recently acquired by AV Dawson

The Cobra site, which is directly adjacent to Port of Middlesbrough, boasts extensive rail infrastructure and has direct access to the East Coast Mainline – this provides additional rail capacity for the port to support existing and new customers.

Gary Dawson, AV Dawson managing director said: “We’re excited to acquire Cobra Middlesbrough. We have worked closely with the business for many years, handling the import and export of salt through our port facility and supporting their rail logistics. Bringing both ours and their operations together, within one business, enables us to provide job security to existing staff while delivering greater efficiencies for our customers.

“We recognise that the site requires some significant investment, but this actually fits perfectly with our strengths and our strategy to invest, develop and expand our site.   

“This acquisition is also strategically important for our wider business because of its excellent rail connectivity. We are working with more and more of our customers to help them identify opportunities to transition from road to rail, so we need to ensure we have the capacity to accommodate their requirements. This is particularly important as we look to put our net zero strategy into action with the ultimate aim to become carbon neutral – we see rail as a big opportunity to help us and our customers to achieve this.”  

This acquisition is not the first time AV Dawson has made a strategic investment to improve its rail infrastructure. In 2015, the business struck a deal with Network Rail to take full control of the seven-acre neighbouring Middlesbrough Goods Yard.

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AV Dawson, owner and operator of Port of Middlesbrough has grown its transport fleet by 25% by investing in state-the-art trucks to support its diversification and expansion strategy.

The ten new heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) aim to help support the growth of its transport division and aid with its diversification strategy.

The Middlesbrough-based businesses’ multi-million-pound investment will strengthen the core fleet and enable further growth of the division, by allowing the expansion into new sectors.

The Scania R500 XT’s - five of which are ADR compliant – the European agreement which regulates the international movement of hazardous goods by land - also boast the XT package that includes reinforced bumpers’ to prevent damage to the trucks and R500 engines.

The business, accredited to the FORS Bronze Standard, has fitted the new trucks with extensive road management software which includes reverse parking sensors and 360-degree CCTV. These trucks also have the Optidrive CanBus system installed, which AV Dawson currently uses to monitor safe driving standards, fuel efficiency & driver performance to promote efficient and safe driving.

Transport Commercial Manager, Alex Hugill said: “It’s an exciting time for our transport department, the investment will allow us to expand our customer base and explore new sectors.

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“It also showcases the commitment the business has to the Transport department and the value this division brings to the wider company.

“Additionally, the investment has led to a restructure within the department which has made way for new roles to further strengthen the transport team.       

“This restructure will allow us to focus on offering an exceptional customer experience and provide a quality, value for money service.”

Transport Operations Manager, Paul Scott said: “Although there have been challenges in recent times regarding recruitment of HGV drivers due to a national shortage, this investment, along with other driver incentives, has allowed us to attract and retain our HGV drivers.    

“We look forward to seeing what the new changes bring to the department and wider business.”

The investment in the transport department is just one in a series of major investments the business has made over the past year including a new state-of-the-art head office at its Port of Middlesbrough site.

Plant investments, site infrastructure and the construction of a renewable energy facility – are just some of the incentives the port is investing in, in a bid to meet the Governments Net Zero targets.

Located on the River Tees in North East England, AV Dawson’s Port of Middlesbrough provides a multi-modal freight logistics service across a number of sectors including energy and renewables, construction, agriculture and automotive. The 40-hectare facility boasts deep-water berths, and market-specific rail terminals including a container park and climate-controlled metals hub, all supported by its road transport fleet.

AV Dawson Limited, the Teesside business which owns and operates Port of Middlesbrough, is a third-generation family business with an 80-year track record in logistics. With a local workforce of 200 people, AV Dawson is dedicated to the development and improvement of its employees and the community in which it operates.

AV Dawson is now embarking on a £10m master plan to invest further in its Middlesbrough port facility - supporting its customers and positioning the business for future growth. The three-year plan includes the construction of a renewable energy plant, a new head office and developments to the port’s quayside to accommodate larger vessels.   

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