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Poseidon rules the waves at LogiPharma 2019

Delegates at the world's largest pharma supply chain event in Montreux learned how the wave-parting Poseidon ocean freight model is opening a clear passage to safety, savings and sustainability.

A workshop presentation by Reinhard Schneider, Global Head of Logistics, Merz Pharma, and Alan Kennedy Executive Director, Team Poseidon Ltd. explained why there is a need for disruptive change to a pharma-logistics model that remains unacceptably risk-prone despite the huge effort and sums of money that has been spent, and continues to be spent, on addressing known performance issues.

These issues include an unacceptably high level of costly, and potentially dangerous, product temperature excursions during transportation. "For too long the pharma-logistics industry has been addressing its considerable quality, safety, security and regulatory concerns by simply nibbling at the edges" said Kennedy, "If it was just a case of a case of throwing money and technology at these problems then they would have waned long ago. What's needed is root and branch reform of the logistics process, a rethink of traditional transactional relationships and a more joined-up approach to the cold chain logistics process."

This is exactly what Poseidon has been set up to do. Embracing 20 large pharma companies and a phalanx of 'best-of-breed' logistics operators and suppliers, the Poseidon network uses a holistic, team-based, approach to create sustainable solutions, drive change and foster continuous improvement. Poseidon reduces transportation risks and improves efficiency by using a radical approach of working together as a team with a common set of goals and objectives for the mutual benefit of everyone involved with the project.

“This kind of 'win-win' strategic collaboration is essential for a modern cold-chain that that can adapt to an environment of constant change, whether driven by competition, regulation, product life cycles, technical innovations, or new drug treatments", says Schneider. "The Poseidon model is a structured network of equals where all parties understand the client's needs, what is expected of them and the importance of working as a team and sharing information. We are creating a proactive, innovative and sustainable supply chain with complementary skills, strategic alignment and inherent flexibility.”

According to Alan Kennedy: "the Poseidon partnering philosophy and the presence of an independent neutral trustee at the core of the group means that it can serve to unite the industry behind supply-chain reform in a way that cannot be achieved otherwise. As cost, regulatory, quality and other risk pressures continue to mount Poseidon is a breath of fresh air. It is pharma-specific, prioritises ocean freight, is recognised by the pharma and logistics communities, and is independent of vested interest and unilateral bias.”

Having been launched at the beginning of 2018, the Poseidon program is well down the road to supporting commercial ocean freight services, both full container-load and part container load.

Schneider and Kennedy touched on the highly successful 'proof of concept' pilot exercises that Poseidon has been conducting over 12 months. “These are designed to demonstrate that there is ‘another way’ of managing the cold chain and that a goal of zero temperature excursions is a feasible objective with existing technology.” asserted Schneider.

Both speakers acknowledged that the fundamental changes being wrought by Poseidon can be difficult for some diehard industry traditionalists to embrace. They say that a paradigm shift of this nature does not come easy to stubborn minds that have been immersed in outmoded conventions and arms-length commercial practices for many years. But a new generation of logistics professionals see things differently. "The days of the status quo are numbered." says Kennedy. " The impetus for change and cultural shift is unstoppable."

As a first step to unlearning bad supply chain habits, Interested parties are invite to visit the Poseidon website at

LogiPharma is a major event for pharma supply chain executives and their supply chain partners. It is the largest and longest-running conference of its type and attracts around 900 senior managers who assemble in Montreux, Switzerland, for 3 days of news, views, discussion and interaction to keep them ahead of key technology updates and market trends.

Poseidon rules the waves at LogiPharma 2019

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Last Updated: 23-Apr-2019