Slot exchange and purchase planning of short sea services for liner carriers
Lu, HA and Chen, S and Lai, P, Slot exchange and purchase planning of short sea services for liner carriers, Journal of Marine Science and Technology, 18, (5) pp. 709-718. ISSN 1023-2796 (2010) [Refereed Article]
In a slot exchange co-operation, participating carriers seek
to benefit in which their surplus of controlled capacities can be
shared to exchange slots belong to partners for their shortages.
To each participant, whether the exchanged conditions can
bring more benefits is based on its slot allocation planning.
This paper introduces a practical slot exchange contract for
multiple short sea loops between two co-operative carriers.
Two integer programming models for maximizing the concerned
profits are proposed to satisfy the expected demand
level and shipping properties. One of the models merely
considers slot exchange as the practical planning, and the other
one includes slot purchase additionally. Decision results can
assist the studied company to pursue an optimal allocation
with consideration of exchanged slots for the involved lines.
Moreover, sensitivity analyses including fixed exchanged condition,
swap allowance influence, and purchase price assessment
are carried out for measuring the impact of relevant
variables to the profits.
In contemporary liner shipping industry, alliance cooperation
has been a popular approach adopted by carriers for
extending service scopes and/or reducing investment risks.
Concrete means of collaboration like joint fleet, slot charter,
slot purchase, and slot exchange are normally employed in
practice. This research focuses on a real-world case of slot
exchange among short sea services. Slot exchange allows
participating carriers to use the recognized capacities of the
involved lines not operated by own self, according to the
contents of the agreement. In such co-operation, participating
carriers expect to benefit in which their surplus of controlled
slots can be shared to exchange capacities for their shortages.
Accordingly, the exchanged condition must have a fair and
reciprocal calculation among the involved lines between participants.
If the number of exchanged slots cannot satisfy a
carrier’s estimated demand, extra available slots could be purchased
from its partner as long as the deal is accepted by all of
them. For fulfilling the benefit from the alliance contract as
expectation, the carrier has to make an ideal slot allocation
plan to understand the proposal of exchanged conditions. This
research explores how to construct a beneficial proposal for
the participating carrier.
The co-operative structures among liner companies began
from conferences and consortia to the recent strategic alliances.
Several studies have been devoted on the strategic alliances
from different perspectives such as the exploration of cooperative
purpose , motivations and successful reasons ,
and the main driving factors to yield the high degree of instabilities
in the beginning of strategic alliances . It was
found that the obvious changes in the operations of liner shipping
slot exchange, slot purchase, short sea service, slot allocation