NSK: ”It takes two to tango”

 In Client cases

“If I don’t like it, I’ll say so”, says John van Vegchel, European Warehouse Operation Manager of NSK, resolutely. “Very nice!” is the laconic response of Stef his first contact with Van Duuren Districenters. The cosy talk is typical for the relationship between the two men, as except when the subject is football -Van Vegchel supports Blommaart PSV while Blommaart is an AJAX fan-, the cooperation between NSK and Van Duuren is, as both state ‘a marriage with continuous work in progress’. Van Vegchel: “I like to have the feeling that a career with NSK moves just that little bit faster than necessary, and at Van Duuren’s, that’s the case. When I see opportunities, I like to go for them together.” Van Vegchel manages NSK’s European storage and distribution centre in Tilburg that is responsible for all orders placed for different European countries. In terms of flexibility and continuity, his customers, the NSK internal sales units, have high requirements. “I risk claims for damages of up to a hundred thousand Euro per hour if I fail to deliver on time.” For this reason alone, a transporter needs to be able to do more than simply drive a full lorry from A to B. Van Vegchel: “if that’s all I wanted, I could just as well get a driver off the Internet. But what do you do if you have to
get a pallet to Italy urgently? That’s when you have to be able to count on your carrier. Van Duuren is one of the few companies that can transport that kind of cargo in such a short time.” The examples of eccentric agreements given by Blommaart and Van Vegchel are numerous. On request, for example, Van Duuren makes photos of the consignment on departure as proof in case anything goes wrong. The transporter also journeys to France at unusual times to realise a 24 hour express service. Blommaart: ““On Good Friday’s for example, it can be difficult to get out of the Netherlands, so we make sure we leave an hour earlier.”
At the beginning, Blommaart visited the NSK sales units in Spain, Portugal and Italy himself. In Van Vegchel’s opinion, an exceptional initiative. “There are not many carriers that’ll do that.” The marriage also stands firm in the event of adversity, as any problems are openly discussed. Van Vegchel; “every time something goes wrong with the cargo, we try to trace the cause together. I don’t just blame Van Duuren, as it can also be our fault or a simple case of force majeure. If the Brennerpas has been snowed under, that’s that. Shame.” Van Duuren does, however, attempt to anticipate such situations by providing information in advance, for example, on the state of the roads, Blommaart explains. Happily, things generally work out OK, as this kind of service exceeds the agreed ‘service level