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Mission and strategy
Building on our heritage
Vopak’s history dates back to 1616. Our earliest ancestors stored and handled coffee, tea, cocoa, sugar, silk, spices and other products from all over the world for trading companies such as the Dutch East India Company, the world’s first multinational company. Since then, much has changed. Dry bulk gave way to liquid bulk and the company grew, eventually establishing a presence on every continent. Unchanged is that we are still loading and unloading ships and storing and handling products for multiple customers. We have thus been connecting global trade flows for 400 years. Looking forward, we will continue to enable the delivery of vital products by building on our heritage and living the Vopak Values: Care for Safety, Health and the Environment, Integrity, Team Spirit, Commitment and Agility.
Sustainability at the core
We store and handle products that are crucial to people’s lives, yet can endanger their health and the environment if stored or handled inappropriately. This comes with a huge responsibility. As a service provider, we do not determine what type of products are in use. As a service provider, our mission is to connect the supply of and demand for these products by providing safe, efficient and clean storage and handling services for our customers. By fulfilling our mission, we strive to be the partner of choice for all our stakeholders, from customers, business partners and investors, to governments, local communities and society at large. Our ambition is to be a strong link in our customers’ value chains and a leader in our industry. We realize that our long-term success depends on our ability to innovate and adapt to new demands from both the market and society. This is why we proactively engage with various stakeholders and explore ways to facilitate the introduction of more sustainable technologies, processes and products. We believe that putting sustainability at the core of our decisions and operations will enable us to remain relevant to society and to continue to store and handle vital products for future generations.
Vision and strategy
As the world population is growing and becoming more affluent, vital products like energy, chemicals and food are in growing demand. Yet these products are not always available locally. We see a growing geographic imbalance between areas of production and areas of consumption of such products. This leads to transportation of oil, gas and petrochemicals over longer distances around the world and a growing demand for storage and handling of bulk liquids and gases at key locations along global marine trade routes. Through our global network of terminals, Vopak connects the supply of and demand for these products and resources. This requires that we respond to constantly changing markets and product flows as a result of ambitious climate policies, geopolitical shifts and the development of new energy sources and cleaner fuels. Determining the best locations for our terminals requires a long-term vision on the products that society needs, while evolving customer demands require flexibility and short-term action in the day-to-day work at the terminals. In such a dynamic context, our success depends on our ability to show leadership in the following five key areas:
- Leading assets in leading locations
We see market changes earlier than others and offer the right service at the right time, in the right place. Over the years, we have grown our global portfolio and sharpened our value proposition for our strategic terminal types: industrial, gas, distribution and hub terminals. At the same time, we keep instilling the ‘Vopak way’ in different geographies, resulting in a stronger asset base than our competition at lower cost of ownership.
- Operational leadership
Vopak takes a leadership role in operating capabilities and sets the standard in the field of safety and sustainability, service and costs. We abide by existing rules and regulations as a minimum and adopt best practices whenever possible. We explore ways to facilitate the introduction of more sustainable technologies, processes and products.
- Service leadership
While safety is our first and foremost priority, we help to improve our customers’ business performance by maximizing operational productivity and increasing efficiency to keep costs down, for instance by shortening idle times. High customer satisfaction indicates that we are on the right track. But we always need to try harder by listening to our customers and by anticipating their future needs.
- Technology leadership
We innovate in the way we design, construct, maintain and operate our terminals. This includes introducing new technology, in particular digital technology like smart robots and mobile devices. Innovation will help us reduce safety incidents, improve service through better traceability and planning, and lower costs by working more efficiently and saving energy.
- People leadership
We need to lead in our investment decisions, in our care for the planet and people, and in living our values. This requires that we inspire and challenge our people and help them develop the right capabilities and leadership skills. We aim for a highly motivated, skilled, agile and diverse Vopak team.
For all this, we find a foundation in our 400 years of history and our ‘founder’s mentality’. This reminds us that we must not tie ourselves down to what we know now and what has worked in the past, but be open to new solutions and opportunities, with an entrepreneurial mindset. This, in combination with the ‘Vopak Values’, enables us to work every day as if each one of us is the founder or owner of Vopak, investing in the company’s success.