Euro Supply Chain 2024

"Logistics must learn to optimise its surfaces"

Interview with Benoît Cudel, Director of Simco Consulting

Interview by Mathieu Noyer, editor-in-chief of Traces Ecrites News, the economic information website for the Grand Est and Bourgogne-Franche-Comté regions

Logistics and supply chain consultancy and training specialist Simco Consulting, which will be exhibiting at Euro Supply Chain, has concluded from its eight years of experience that the sector needs to change its vision to focus on optimising or reusing space at a time when it is increasingly being squeezed by other uses.

What are your motivations to participate in this second edition of the Euro Supply Chain trade fair? 
Above all, the positive experience of the first one! Compared to the events in which we participate, this show has, due to its regional profile, the interest of attracting visitors with a very operational aim. Most of them come with projects that they are trying to implement or optimise in their company. Last year, we completed a project directly from Euro Supply Chain. The meeting also strengthens our reputation in the East. 

 What activities is Simco Consulting developing in the field of logistics and supply chain? 
Since the company was founded in 2015, it has focused on advising companies, both shippers and logistics providers. For the former, we help them organise their calls for tender for suppliers, while we help the latter to respond to them. 
 We assist both in optimising their traffic and distribution patterns using 3D flow simulation software, in organising and setting up the information system, in short, how to "put logistics and distribution into performance". We provide our services completely independently of the solution providers. We know them all, of course, but we take care to maintain the necessary distance and perspective to offer each client the best suited solution. 
 Born independent, our company of 5 permanent staff in Chalon-sur-Saône (Saône-et-Loire) has relied since 2021 on the new shareholder, the Italian group Simco, an international expert in our field of activity (2.5 million euros in annual turnover). 

 How has your business evolved? 
 We have added a training service, which was recognised last year by the ad hoc certification, Qualiopi. We felt it was important to provide this additional service for our customers' employees, in a context where many logistics tasks are still manual and where there is a shortage of labour. 

 What are the main challenges facing logistics, according to your analysis? 
 I identify three major developments. Firstly, the development of e-commerce, which has reshuffled the cards in the sector and posed a challenge to respond to the urgency of the situation. However, this phenomenon is currently slowing down, but not to the point of causing a return to the pre-Covid situation, we are not going backwards. ;
Secondly, the digitalisation of flows, which makes our 3D simulation tool even more relevant.
Finally, the need to optimise the surface areas dedicated to logistics, under the effect of a certain recentralisation of production from abroad, a function that consumes square metres, and by the impact of the rules limiting land consumption.
In short, we need to densify, to know how to do more - or better - with less square metres, and to try to reoccupy wasteland before thinking about building new areas. 

 What is your view of the supply chain in the Grand Est? 
 It is confronted with the same phenomena as elsewhere in France, and adds a specific cross-border dimension. The players have to deal with demanding competition, particularly from Germany.