Being major potential operators of foldable construction containers, marketing to shipping lines and/or container lease companies seems most obvious. There is a major task for the manufacturers of foldable containers to polish the negative image and to convince potential users of system benefits. The potential savings in transhipment and transport costs offer a substantial financial margin for a container design, which might have commercial perspectives. However, substantial marketing is required to change the perception of shipping lines on these savings. Read more
An important aspect affecting the performance of the foldable container is its application. This not only determines the cost-effectiveness of the container, but also makes demands on the arrangement and organisation of the logistic chain. On the basis of the number of links in the logistic chain in which containers are used in the folded state, the following logistic basic concepts can be distinguished (see also figure 3): Read more
Low costs for folding and unfolding the containers.
Folding and unfolding containers implies additional handling (manpower) and usually demands for ancillary equipment. Cost savings elsewhere in the logistical chain should compensate these additional costs. In other words, there is a trade-off between the cost savings of using foldable containers and the additional costs they bring about in the logistical chain. The net result, and therefore the success of foldable containers, will strongly depend on the time and costs involved with folding and unfolding. This influence of the folding costs on the cost competitiveness of foldable containers is further explained in Annex A with a quantitative example. Read more
The idea of foldable containers is not so new. In the past several designs have been proposed. The majority of these ideas however never passed the phase of patent granting. Only two concepts have achieved the phase of pilot/testing and market introduction and are currently still available: the Six-In-One container and the Fallpac container. Read more