Clean energy initiatives will include one of the largest solar-roof developments in the region

DUBAI – November 25, 2020 – Agility, a leading global logistics provider, announced solar projects in Dubai and Jordan that will eventually cut the company’s carbon footprint in the region by 5%.

At Agility’s regional headquarters in Dubai, the solar photovoltaic (PV) plant involves installation of 17,500 panels at three sites with the capacity to generate nearly 8 mega-watts of power at peak. Installation will include a 5.45 MW system at two sites in the Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), and a 2.6 MW system at the Dubai Investment Park. Once complete, Agility’s solar PV system will generate enough electricity to cover 60% of the energy requirements at the sites and save an estimated 8,838 tons of CO2 each year, roughly equivalent to the emissions generated by trucking 18,000 fully-loaded containers from Dubai to Abu Dhabi.

In Jordan, the solar photovoltaic plant will encompass 1,945 panels at Agility’s warehouse in Aqaba, with a capacity of 788 kilo-watt peak. The solar plant will generate enough electricity to cover 100% of the energy requirements and save an estimated 900 tons of CO2 each year.

In both locations, the high-efficiency solar PV panels are designed to optimize energy generation in hot desert climates. The panel systems incorporate robotic cleaning and are waterproofed.

“Globally, Agility’s goal is to reduce its carbon footprint by 25% by 2050. Our investment in solar is a huge step in the right direction and will cut the company’s global emissions by 3%. We are hopeful that it encourages other companies in the region to do the same. We know that greening operations is good for business and good for the planet,” says Elias Monem, CEO Middle East & Africa, Agility GIL.

The project is consistent with the goals of the UAE’s Shams Solar Policy, a local initiative for distributed solar plants in the United Arab Emirates. In both Dubai and Jordan, Clenergize Solar Consultants was appointed as the project  advisors to handle the engineering specifications, tendering, contract management, design reviews and project management.

  • “The Private Sector and its Humanitarian Role During the Pandemic” dialogue discussed best practices, success stories, and shaping policies and processes to support refugees worldwide
  • The virtual event convened high-level decision makers from UNCHR and international private sector companies from Kuwait, Oman, Canada and Switzerland
  • Long-term and financial sustainable solutions were at the heart of this collaborative dialogue to alleviate the effects of forced displacement and foster economic inclusion of vulnerable populations across the globe

Tarek Sultan, Vice Chairman & CEO of Agility, speaking at the dialogue.

Kuwait City, Kuwait, November 18th, 2020 – UNHCR, The UN Refugee Agency, held yesterday a strategic dialogue titled “The Private Sector and its Humanitarian Role During the Pandemic” to discuss best practices, success stories, and shaping policies and processes to support vulnerable refugees and internally displaced populations worldwide.

The strategic dialogue is part of a series of in-depth and collaborative dialogues organized by UNHCR to highlight the role of the private sector in supporting refugees and internally displaced people (IDP) across the globe. The first virtual event of the series was held on November 17th and brought together high-level decision makers from the UN refugee agency and international private sector companies including Tarek Abdulaziz Sultan Al Essa, Vice Chairman & CEO of Agility from Kuwait, H.R.H. Prince Jaime de Bourbon de Parme, Senior Advisor to UNHCR from Switzerland; Iman Al Barwani Director & Vice Chairperson of MB Holdings and Foundation from Oman; and  Jim Estill, Chairman of DDE Media from Canada. At the heart of these discussions participants shared experiences and shaping actions to generate long-term solutions and impact in support of refugees.

“Private sector engagement and cross-sector partnerships are more important than ever when it comes to the support of vulnerable refugees, especially with the current pandemic and its economic repercussions, which has disproportionately affected those living on the margins of society and in low to mid income countries, where 85% of refugees globally live ” explained Dr. Samer Haddadin, Head of UNHCR Kuwait Office. “Therefore, we are delighted to be providing this platform in Kuwait, which will enable us to find long-term solutions to support forcibly displaced worldwide as well as to foster their economic inclusion,” he added.

Improving the livelihoods of refugees and displaced persons through economic inclusion is a key component of UNHCR’s operations as part of the efforts to provide protection and solution outcomes for vulnerable populations.

 “Our ability to protect refugees and vulnerable populations depends on the strength of partnerships between UNHCR and the private sector. UNHCR does the extremely difficult, on-the-ground work to provide refugees with vital assistance and equip them with the necessities to protect themselves and cover their basic needs” stated, Mr. Tarek Sultan. Adding that “UNHCR knows what vulnerable populations need, and where obstacles lie, but without the commitment and expertise of private-sector partners, many of those needs would go unmet. So our challenge for the future is to figure out how to work together to be even more effective.”

Key topics from the discussion focused on the empowerment of refugees. This includes innovative solutions on responding effectively to the refugee crisis amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and how private partnerships can take the lead in designing equitable and sustainable responses that position empowered refugees at the center of their design. Other topic focuses included the ways in which long-term and financially sustainable solutions can alleviate the effects of forced displacement, the private sector’s role in providing a safety net around humanitarian issues, and how to raise the interest of other business leaders when it comes to the support of refugees.

 “As companies, CSR is more than simply donating money in a hope that the challenges facing society will magically disappear. Corporate Social Responsibility is really an investment in the good of society, and we should treat it as such, with proper planning and coordinated effort with governments and NGOs to create sustainable positive impact,” explained Mrs. Al Barwani.

Currently, displaced populations come primarily from five countries including Syria, Venezuela, Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar. Through strategic dialogues as well as other activities, campaigns, and partnerships, UNHCR is working towards building a better future for refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people across the globe.


FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

Raefah Makki
Head of Campaign and Advocacy Team, UNHCR
[email protected]


About UNHCR

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, leads international action to protect people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. We deliver life-saving assistance that includes shelter, food and water, as well as help safeguard fundamental human rights. We also develop solutions that ensure people have a safe place to call home where they can build a better future and work to ensure that stateless people are granted a nationality.

Geoffrey White tells CNBC Africa that investors’ view of Africa as the riskiest place to do business will change in light of rising risks elsewhere and Africa’s increasingly inviting prospects.

Originally published on the CNBCAfrica

KUWAIT – November 18, 2020Agility, a leading global logistics provider, has been added to the FTSE4Good Index Series, a resource used by investors to identify companies around the world with strong environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices.

Agility’s addition to the FTSE4Good Indices comes as the company is intensifying efforts to green the supply chain, strengthen labor protections, improve its safety record, and provide humanitarian relief to those affected by natural disasters, conflict, and the pandemic.   

FTSE4Good was developed by FTSE Russell, which provides benchmarks used by investors to analyze and measure markets, sectors, companies and asset classes. Agility outperformed the transportation services sector average in FTSE4Good’s independent assessment of its ESG record.

Tarek Sultan, Agility Vice Chairman, said: “Agility’s addition to the FTSE4Good series is important independent validation of the commitment Agility has made to serve the interests of communities, customers, employees, investors, small business owners and vulnerable populations. It also demonstrates that ethical investors looking for responsible, sustainable companies have real opportunities in high-growth emerging markets.”

EcoVadis, an independent organization that evaluates and rates corporate sustainability programs, has also ranked Agility in the top 10% of all companies and the top 4% of the logistics industry for overall sustainability performance.

Environment

Agility is investing in green supply chain technologies through its corporate ventures team. Agility is committed to the development of commercial trucks powered by revolutionary hybrid technology through its investment in Hyliion. The company has also invested in digital-trucking and road freight optimization platforms that help in tackling the issue of trucks traveling empty on the back haul. Agility has also invested in TVP Solar, a renewable thermal energy company, whose technology powers Agility’s corporate headquarters in Kuwait’s harsh desert climate.

Agility has pledged to lower its CO2 emissions footprint 25% by 2025. It is a member of the Sustainable Air Freight Alliance, as well as the ocean freight industry’s Clean Cargo Working Group, which strives to cut emissions associated with ocean cargo, and is working directly with Maersk and other carriers to slash emissions from shipments booked by Agility customers.

Agility’s sustainability experts deploy carbon reporting tools and proprietary transportation optimization technology to lower CO2 emissions from customers’ ocean and air shipments. The company’s Integrated Supply Chain Solutions (ISCS) team designs lower-emissions supply chains and other solutions that improve efficiency and reduce overall environmental impact.

In Africa, India and the Middle East, Agility warehouses and Agility Logistics Parks incorporate features that maximize use of local building materials and sharply reduce energy consumption, water usage and waste. In Kuwait, Singapore, Spain, Abu Dhabi and other locations, Agility offices and facilities are cooled, heated and powered by solar and other renewable energy sources. Agility has also adopted business practices such as double-trailer trucking in Abu Dhabi that decrease environmental impact.

Fair Labor

Agility has invested in the development of fair labor practices, monitoring and transparency, and has committed to third-party human rights audits in all its emerging market operations. The company has an extensive fair labor training program for management and for employees, and empowers employees to raise concerns directly or anonymously via a third-party hotline.

Communities & Humanitarian Logistics

Agility has a long track record of investing in community projects in 80+ countries around the world, including helping tens of thousands of children to access education both online and offline. Agility and its employees have funded schools, education initiatives and vocational training across Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

The company also supports the UN World Food Programme through its partnership with the Logistics Emergency Team, which donates logistics experience and services during major humanitarian crises. Through this partnership and others, Agility has donated logistics in support of more than 45 major humanitarian operations in the last decade, in countries ranging from Peru to Nepal. Agility also partners with UNHCR to support 12,000 refugees across two community refugee centres in Malaysia.

Through its #keepcargomoving initiative, Agility has responded to the global COVID-19 pandemic by donating warehouse space, freight services, personal protection equipment (PPE), and supply chain management expertise to government agencies and international institutions in several countries.

  • The center in Jebel Ali Free Zone South is being established in a new partnership with Agility and will serve customers in the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Yemen and Libya, among others
  • Increasing speed of product availability, the Center will reduce time-to-market by 58 percent
  • The center will facilitate the delivery of more than 3400 tons to the region.

Dubai, November 17, 2020 – Bayer Middle East FZE has announced the launch of its regional distribution center that will reduce time-to-market by as much as 58 percent. The center will facilitate the delivery of more than 3400 tons annually, while ensuring greater network flexibility, increased frequency and dedicated stock for customers in the Middle East.

Supporting network optimization and streamlining supply, the warehouse is located in the Jebel Ali Free zone, close to the Jebel Ali Sea Port with easy connections to Al Maktoum International (DWC) and Dubai International (DXB) airports and major road arteries.

Equipped with the latest warehousing and cold chain technologies, the facility operated by Agility, one of the world’s leading logistics companies, is spread over 60,000 m² with multiple storage temperature options. Accommodating over 100,000 pallet positions, 56 loading docks and 83 material handling equipment, the center is fully compliant with Ministry of Health, EU Guidelines on Good Distribution Practice and World Health Organization standards.

Thomas Panzer, SVP – Head Supply Chain Management Pharmaceuticals at Bayer AG said, “Customer focus is among Bayer’s core values and is embedded deeply in our overall supply chain strategy. With a presence in the Middle East for more than 85 years, we have been providing important healthcare and crop protection products to customers in the region. Within the last decade we have successfully launched various innovative products that advance the unmet health and nutritional needs of the region, which as the next step required us to invest in logistics infrastructure to ensure greater flexibility and reduce lead times.”

Henrik Wulff, Senior Bayer Representative – Middle East & Head of Bayer Pharmaceuticals Middle East added, “Advancing health and nutrition remains a priority for us. We want to ensure increased and closer product availability especially amidst COVID-19 through this center. Benefitting from Dubai’s strategic geographic location and logistics infrastructure and Agility’s experience, scale, operational capability and regional track record, the Center improves our distribution model in the Middle East and optimizes our last mile processes.”

Integrating fully with Agility’s warehouse management systems, Bayer will maintain visibility and traceability of inventory employing the latest technologies. The center will be supported by another facility that will be implemented in Germany in mid-2021 as part of Bayer’s long-term commitment to Middle East customers.

Albert Asool, CEO, Agility Dubai said, “Through this partnership we aim to support Bayer with world-class warehousing that incorporates multiple temperature-zone storage and cold-chain solutions. Our strategically positioned regional logistics hub, pharma supply chain expertise and distribution network incorporate a comprehensive suite of services, technologies and tools that provide visibility and traceability down to the unit level.”

The center is a key milestone for Bayer Middle East which as a legal entity was established in 2012 in the United Arab Emirates to cater the business of its leading divisions, Bayer Pharma, Bayer Consumer Health and Bayer Crop Science in the region including GCC countries and Egypt. Prior to the launch of the center, Bayer products were previously being directly imported into the local markets and sold to pharmacies, end consumers and patients through a distributor network.

   Q3 2020 (Million KD)Q3 2019 (Million KD)Variance (%)9 Months 2020 (Million KD)9 months  2019 (Million KD)Variance (%)
Revenue403.0400.70.6%1,168.01,175.8-0.7%
Net Revenue120.4133.3-9.7%364.0386.4-5.8%
EBITDA46.547.4-1.9%122.4142.4-14.1%
Net Profit15.321.7-29.4%31.563.6-50.4%
EPS (fils)8.0011.33-29.4%16.4733.22-50.4%

Numbers above are rounded

KUWAIT – November 8, 2020Agility, a leading global logistics provider, today reported Q3 earnings of 8 fils per share on a net profit of KD 15.3 million, a decrease of 29.4% compared with the same period a year earlier. EBITDA declined 1.9% to KD 46.5 million, and revenue was flat at KD 403 million.

Nine-month earnings stood at 16.47 fils per share on net profit of KD 31.5 million, a decrease of 50.4% over the same period in 2019. EBITDA declined 14.1% to KD 122.4 million, and revenue declined 0.7% to KD 1,168 million.

Tarek Sultan, Agility Vice Chairman and CEO, said: “While we – like many businesses – are still feeling the impact of COVID-19 we are also seeing recovery across most of our business lines, albeit with each business recovering at a different pace. Agility benefited from early and decisive measures taken to contain costs and preserve cash, and is well poised to navigate what is likely to continue to be a volatile market for some time. Agility remains committed to investing in technology that will transform our industry, expanding our digital logistics offerings, and bringing world-class warehousing infrastructure to fast-growing emerging markets.” 

Agility Global Integrated Logistics (GIL)

Global Integrated Logistics Q3 EBITDA was KD 18.5 million, a 35.2% increase from the same period in 2019. The improvement was primarily driven by significant cost reductions across the business.

GIL’s Q3 net revenue was KD 71.4 million, 5.1% higher than the same period in 2019.  Along with net revenue increases in Air Freight and Contract Logistics, there were net revenue declines in Ocean Freight, Fairs & Events and Project Logistics. GIL gross revenue was KD 305.7 million, a 7.3% increase from same period in 2019.

The Q3 Air Freight NR increase of 39.1% was driven by continued demand for exceptional shipments related to the Life Sciences vertical. Ocean Freight NR declined 14.5% when compared with Q3 2019, as a result of volume and yield compression. Air Freight and Ocean Freight volumes decreased in Q3 vs. same period in 2019, as a result of customers’ demand and production disruption arising from COVID-19 as well as capacity constraints.

Contract Logistics continues to experience strong growth (12.7% net revenue growth), mainly in the MEA Region (Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE), where there was strong performance at new facilities, along with increased efficiencies. Fairs & Events (F&E) has been hurt significantly by Coronavirus-related event postponements and cancellations.

Starting in Q1, GIL introduced a range of cost reduction measures intended to ensure continued strength of EBITDA performance in anticipation of falling global trade volumes. This positions GIL well for operating in the current environment. GIL continues to focus on operational productivity as well as customer solutions to respond to the changing market environment.

Agility’s Infrastructure Companies

Agility’s Infrastructure group EBITDA declined 16.5% to KD 31.6 million during the third quarter. UPAC, NAS and GCS were primarily responsible for the decrease, each reporting significant declines as a result of the pandemic. In contrast, Agility Logistics Parks (ALP) and Tristar proved resilient during this pandemic. Infrastructure group net revenue fell 24.4%, and gross revenue declined 15%.

ALP experienced revenue growth of 5.6% in the third quarter. ALP continues to see increased demand for warehousing spaces from customers that are mainly suppliers of necessity goods. ALP is moving ahead with the developments in Kuwait, Saudi and Africa to meet customers demand. 

Tristar, a fully integrated liquid logistics company, posted a 15.9% revenue decline mainly due to commercial fuel sales. Maritime segment has shown a healthy growth due to the deployment of new vessels on long term contract. Fuel Farm segment also reported an increase in revenue as compared to same period last year. At the profitability level, Tristar have achieved improvement in earnings mainly due to contribution from Maritime segment. Tristar contractual business model helped them to be resilient during this crisis and achieve a profitability growth compared to last year.

National Aviation Services (NAS) reported a Q3 revenue decrease of 46.1% but is beginning to see improvements in passenger traffic and flights. NAS Kuwait continues to suffer from the cap imposed by the government on the number of passengers/flights into/out of Kuwait International Airport. Other geographies NAS operate in performed well, and are experiencing a rebound. NAS VIP services and airport lounges have been mostly impacted, where, in most cases, lounges remain closed. Cargo remains a positive subsector for NAS.

The pandemic also has affected performance at United Projects for Aviation Services Company (UPAC), which saw revenues decline in the third quarter compared to last year; primarily due to the cessation of operations at the Kuwait International Airport during the lockdown period and subsequent resumption of traffic at a lower capacity. Business is starting to show signs of gradual recovery as UPAC continues taking measures to reduce the negative impact on its business.

At GCS, Agility’s customs modernization company, revenue fell 30.2% in this quarter compared to the third quarter of 2019 due to the decline in trade movement, though the negative impact of COVID-19 eased during Q3.

  

Recap of Agility 3rd quarter 2020 Financial Performance

  • Agility’s net profit decreased 29.4% to KD 15.3 million. EPS was 8 fils vs. 11.33 fils a year earlier.
  • Agility’s EBITDA decreased 1.9% to KD 46.5 million.
  • Agility’s revenue increased by 0.6%, to KD 403 million and net revenue decreased 9.7%.
  • GIL revenue increased by 7.3% to KD 305.7 million.
  • Infrastructure’s revenue declined 15% to KD 101.7 million.
  • Agility enjoys a healthy balance sheet with KD 2.2 billion in assets. Net debt was KD 173.9 million (excluding lease liabilities) as of September 30, 2020. Reported operating cash flow was KD 115.2 million for the first nine months of 2020, an increase of 17.5%.  

Agility will hold its Third Quarter Earnings Webcast on Thursday November 12, 2020 at 2:00 pm (Kuwait), 6:00 am (New York) and 11:00 am (London).

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Investor Relations Department
Agility Public Warehousing Company

Vehicle configuration means significant environmental, and operational benefits

ABU DHABI – November 4, 2020 – Agility, a leading global logistics provider, is the first logistics company in Abu Dhabi to operate double-trailer trucks, which will improve operational efficiencies for its customers and reduce emissions by cutting the number of trips made.

Agility operates an extensive fleet of trailers in Abu Dhabi. About 50 of those are now double-trailer trucks. Double trailers significantly reduce the number of trips required to haul cargo, decreasing overall wear and tear on tires and vehicles. In the first six months of operation, Agility’s fleet management data demonstrates that double trailers reduce fuel use by 26% per container, eliminating about 2,500 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year.

Houssam Mahmoud, Chief Executive Officer for Agility Abu Dhabi, said: “In addition to being environmentally friendly, the double trailers will positively impact productivity – and that’s good for both Agility and our customers. We are able to pass a lot of this benefits to our customer by providing greater flexibility and a significant reduction in the number of required trips.”

Acquiring the permit to operate double-trailer trucks took six months of proposals, trials, accident simulations, and safety demonstrations. Agility worked together with a local automotive distributor to develop the safest possible solution for the market, including Active Brake Assist 4, proximity control, and lane assist. Agility conducted a transport route survey to identify any routes that might be risky or challenging for drivers. Agility insisted on lane assist capability for the vehicles, and proposed it to the supplier after determining that drivers would need help to navigate sharp round-a-bouts.  In the United Arab Emirates, Agility has an industry-leading safety record, linking driver incentive pay to safety, rather than speed of operations, and has voluntarily provided extensive third-party training on double trailers to ensure it maintains its excellent record.