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- Gary Fast
As one of Canada’s largest importers, Canadian Tire faced a challenge shared by all major trans–Pacific BCOs over the past year: gaining access to and controlling capacity when traditional ocean carrier services were full to capacity and unable to fully support the company’s need to keep its 1,700 retail locations stocked with product. As 2022 begins, the company’s supply chain supporting imports of 100,000 TEU a year looks very different from just a year ago. Among other unconventional moves, it entered the vessel market as a charterer, securing multiple ships — including a breakbulk vessel that it successfully modified to safely move hundreds of loaded proprietary 53-foot containers from Asia. In August, it acquired a 25 percent stake in an inland container terminal 300 kilometers east of the port of Vancouver (Ashcroft Terminal Ltd.) operated by Singapore-based PSA Corp. It enabled container stacking at inland locations using reach stackers, expanding capacity. “It’s all about being creative and innovative and building resiliency,” said Gary Fast, Canadian Tire’s vice president of transportation. Gary will discuss how the company pivoted in the face of unprecedented challenges in this 45-minute one-on-one conversation at TPM.