iginon Group, a logistic services provider with a regional presence won five awards in the recently concluded East Africa Maritime Awards (EAMA) initiative. It emerged as the best warehousing company and the innovative firm in logistics in East Africa.
It was also the runners up in the best cargo transporter, best regional cargo logistics providers, and best clearing and forwarding agent in Kenya categories.
Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) held its second EAMA on September 17, 2021 in Mombasa to recognize the industry’s outstanding practices for excellence, sustainability, training, technology, initiative, personality, and leadership from the Eastern Africa region.
In 2018, when the initiative started, the company won the best cargo transporter and safety categories while it emerged as the runners up in the best regional cargo logistics service providers.
“We are in the business of powering trade through logistics and this victory is a true testament to Siginon’s commitment to service excellence for all our customers. Keeping our customers first, both our internal staff and external customers is the secret to excellence,” The group’s Managing Director, Mr. Meshack Kipturgo said following the award.
Added he; ” It is a great delight to be recognized through this award, it means Siginon Group is doing something right. It also means that our journey in powering trade is on the right track, and we feel inspired to stretch even further to ensure that we excel even more and keep our customers thriving and growing within whichever sector for the growth of the economies we serve.”
The awards, according to Kipturgo, encourage the industry players to aim high in various sectors. Opportunities to improve are there for everyone and the organizers should continue to look for growth opportunities to make the event even more attractive, he said.
The Group is an integrated end-to-end logistics and air cargo solutions provider based in Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda with over 30 years of experience. The firm provides supply chain solutions to its customers from the source to the final destination. It is located in Nairobi, Mombasa, and Eldoret in Kenya, Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, and Kampala, Uganda.
The company provides customs clearance, freight forwarding, warehousing, transportation, port services, and air cargo handling in East Africa.
“At Siginon, we ably serve regional and international markets focusing on satisfying needs in East Africa and the Great Lakes region. Some of our key markets include Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Somali, Northern DR Congo, and Southern Sudan,” Kipturgo said.
The Siginon Group started as a small clearing and forwarding company at the port city of Mombasa in 1985.
“As we cleared cargo, we started getting a lot of requests from our customers who wanted their cargo transported from point A to B. So we bought some trucks to move the cargo to the final destination. Then from there, we had the customer asking us whether we could hold the cargo for them for some time because they didn’t need the goods urgently; so we started investing in warehouses,” Kipturgo said, adding that this spared customers inconveniences of relying on multiple handlers for various services.
On warehousing that emerged as the winner in EAMA awards, Siginon Global Logistics, which is part of the Siginon Group has created warehousing facilities with a total capacity of 300,000 square feet to meet the growing demand from its customers.
The warehousing has today been aligned to meet the needs of various customer groups that include humanitarian agencies distributing relief food to neighboring countries such as Somalia, South Sudan among others.
To meet their growing demand and increased uses, warehouse operators have invested in modern Information Technology and internet-based systems. Siginon, for instance, operates a Warehouse Management System (WMS) that assists in stock taking, cargo identification among others that support customers’ decision-making processes.
“Our warehouse system provides the customers round the clock access to their inventory and execute orders from their offices. Radio-frequency identification (RFID) system ensures accurate and efficient inventory management, stock-outs, and stock-taking controlled by a touch of a button,” Kipturgo said.
He added: “These then advise customers on the status of their inventory on demand to support their prompt decision-making.”
Even importers of motor vehicles are increasingly finding warehouses indispensable since some use warehouse services to ensure they have vehicle stocks ready for sale to meet expected demand.
The advance in technology, according to Kipturgo, takes credit for the central role warehouses plays in the success of e-commerce, which is gaining a strong footing in the country. Their role includes inventory management such as ordering, stock taking, stock-outs, and acceptances.
The growth of online selling platforms such as Jumia, Kilimall International, Masoko, Aladin, Pigiame, Africa Sokoni among others has created the need for warehouses that are easily accessible to serve clients who expect a predictable, reliable delivery.
“An efficient e-commerce process relies on the adoption of warehouse management systems to ensure timeliness, accuracy, and speed. This has eliminated the need for unnecessary human intervention and delays caused by various factors,” according to Kipturgo.
Siginon has also been at the fore in embracing innovation to provide seamless logistics services. Last year, Siginon Aviation partnered with Kale Logistics Solutions to provide a comprehensive air cargo management system for its operations at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in Nairobi and Eldoret International Airport.
Kale, a trusted global IT Logistics partner for Fortune 500 companies was supposed to digitize the entire air cargo handling operations at the two airports with GALAXY- a web-based Airport Cargo Management System it operates globally.
GALAXY is a highly rated cargo handling system comprehensively covering operations for import, export, and transit. It incorporates several next-generation features, which help cargo ground handlers to shift from legacy monolithic systems towards a futureproof system. With GALAXY, users can experience complete automation, clear visibility, control, collaboration, personalization, and seamless integration within the stakeholder’s network.
“Our commitment to our customers is to consistently offer services that are in tandem with the evolving needs in the ground handling industry, we selected GALAXY for its ability to offer a robust system that ensures our airline customers’ needs are met proactively and effectively,” Kipturgo said in last year when the two firms signed the deal.