"We are extremely pleased to have Hancock Timber Resource Group as a client and to provide them with the benefits of our Blue Ox System," said Matt Linderman, area manager for Trimble's Forestry Automation Business. "Many of the inefficiencies along the supply chain are caused by a lack of information. The Blue Ox system collects and processes that information in real time, recommending actions that can reduce or eliminate the bottlenecks that waste time and fuel. The result is more efficient use of capital assets, accomplished by reducing the amount of time trucks spend traveling empty and waiting to be loaded or unloaded. For truck owners, this can mean savings in fuel, maintenance, and truck replacement costs, which could allow them to lower their price to landowners for their services. Loggers also benefit from a more efficient distribution of trucks to all cut sites, reducing the potential for disruption in the flow of wood to the mills."
"Transporting logs from the harvest site to the mill can represent nearly half of the total cost of forest products processing," said Hugh McManus, general manager for Hancock Timber's South Central Division. "With the implementation of these innovative transportation technologies across our forestry operations in Western Louisiana, East Texas and Arkansas, Hancock Timber expects to increase supply chain efficiencies and reduce costs—to the benefit of our clients."
Trimble's Blue Ox system applies rugged mobile computing, Global Positioning System (GPS) and wireless communications to the forest products and logging transportation industry. The Trimble Nomad™ rugged handheld computer allows real-time load information to be entered into a central system directly from a remote forest location. This information is then processed through an optimization engine which then matches available loads to available trucks based on real-time location and other status information. Fleet managers can also monitor and update the system for mill shutdowns, road hazards or detours, truck breakdowns or other supply chain disruptions and recommend corrective actions as needed. The Blue Ox system makes assignments and transmits other information to individual drivers via Trimble's Yuma™ Tablet PC, which is mounted in the cab of each truck in the fleet. The automated process significantly increases the utilization of trucks, enabling operations to move more logs with fewer trucks with reduced transportation costs.
For more information on the Blue Ox system, visit: www.trimbleforestryautomation.com
About the Hancock Timber Resource Group
The Hancock Timber Resource Group, a division of Hancock Natural Resource Group, Inc, is an operating company of MFC Global Investment Management. Hancock Timber is the world's largest timberland investment management organization and manages approximately 4.5 million acres of timberland in the United States, Brazil, Canada, New Zealand and Australia. Additional information about the organization may be found at: www.hancocktimber.com.
MFC Global Investment Management® is the asset management division of Manulife Financial. MFC Global Investment Management's diversified group of companies provides comprehensive asset management solutions for institutional investors, investment funds and individuals in key markets around the world. This investment expertise extends across a full range of asset classes including equity, fixed income and alternative investments such as oil and gas, real estate, timber, farmland, as well as asset allocation strategies.
MFC Global Investment Management has investment offices in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan, Hong Kong, and throughout Asia. As of December 31, 2009, assets under management for institutional clients were approximately Cdn$110 billion.
MFC Global Investment Management®, Manulife and the block design are trademarks of The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company and are used by it and its affiliates including Manulife Financial Corporation.
Manulife Financial is a leading Canadian-based financial services group serving millions of customers in 22 countries and territories worldwide. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia, and primarily through John Hancock in the United States, the Company offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$436.5 billion (US$407.1 billion) as of September 30, 2009.
About Trimble's Forestry Automation Business
Trimble's Forestry Automation Business develops solutions and applies technology that allows organizations to manage transportation, control supply chain costs and increase overall efficiency in the forestry industry. Trimble's solutions include a suite of software products and specially-designed rugged computers to meet the real-time needs of the user.
Trimble applies technology to make field and mobile workers in businesses and government significantly more productive. Solutions are focused on applications requiring positioning or location, including surveying, construction, agriculture, fleet and asset management, public safety and mapping. In addition to utilizing positioning technologies such as GPS, lasers and optics, Trimble solutions may include software content specific to the needs of the user. Wireless technologies are utilized to deliver the solution to the user in the field and to ensure communication between the field and the office. Founded in 1978, Trimble is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif.
For more information, visit: www.trimble.com.
Hancock Timber Resource Group
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