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25 Years of Aloha - Lynden celebrates anniversary of Hawaii service

Posted on Thu, Dec 30, 2010

Looking to expand its services, Lynden Air Freight opened an office in Honolulu soon after the New Year in 1987. Lynden’s first employee on the island was Marvalyn Mallette Ringling and, 25 years later, she is still there, answering phones, greeting long-time customers by name and showing the Aloha spirit Lynden is now known for.

Marva and Robb
Photo: Marvalyn Mallette Ringling and Robb Guro

“We’re not just a mainland company doing business in Hawaii, we were born and raised here,” says Jeff Bell, Lynden’s Director of the Mid-Pacific. “With local staff we have established solid, long-standing relationships. We take pride in being a niche player in a niche market.”

Lynden, now known as Lynden International, is commemorating its 25th anniversary of shipping to Hawaii with a celebration on Feb. 11th, 25 years to the day the office opened. More than 200 customers, vendors and employees will gather on the roof of the Lynden warehouse overlooking the Honolulu airport to ring in the next quarter century. Lynden International commissioned a special poster (created by Lynden’s own Julie Notarianni) to celebrate the 25th anniversary:

Hawaii poster

“Hawaii is a very competitive market, and customers may have four or five people trying to win their shipping business. They can afford to be picky,” Ringling explains. “What sets us apart then and now is a good product and personal service. Customers want to talk to a real person on the phone who remembers them from six months ago or even six years ago. We don’t ask customers to start a conversation with an account number. I make it a point to stay connected with them even if they haven’t shipped with us in awhile.”

Customers’ expectations have certainly changed over the past 25 years. On the ocean side, they expect reduced transit times and quality along with quick cutoff times and perfect execution, Marva says. Supply chains on Hawaii have matured and if something goes wrong customers want to know about it right away so they can manage their inventory, products and employees. “That’s why Lynden’s EZ Commerce is such a huge selling point,” Ringling says. “Many forwarders have not embraced the technology piece at this level.”

Senior International Operations Agent Robb Guro has worked at the Honolulu office almost as long as Marva. Over 22 years, he’s heard just about everything from those on the mainland. “Someone from the Midwest once asked if we had chickens running around in our office,” he says. “Or why couldn’t deliveries be made to a neighbor island – can’t you just take the bridge to the next island? The comments were hilarious, but I was surprised how unaware people were about the geography and business atmosphere in Hawaii”.

Separating fact from fiction just comes with the job, he says, but the real challenge is being the last state in the national time zone. “Time is against us here. We are opposite the east coast in time zones, so we must act quickly to get a shipment booked or respond to an email. We often need to answer requests and questions the minute we get in.”

Looking back over two-plus decades, the Hawaiian freight industry has changed from construction to retail. “Back in the mid-80s construction was king,” Ringling says. “Maui went through a growth spurt with a lot of hotel construction going on. We were moving a lot of oversized, heavy cargo. Now retail is king along with perishables like fruit and flowers.”

In 1992, Lynden arranged for charters and emergency shipments when Hurricane Iniki ravaged the Hawaiian island of Kauai. Lynden was the first air freight forwarder to set up a regular office on the island to meet customers’ and residents’ needs. “We couldn’t keep up with the calls,” remembers Ringling. “We moved a ton of generators and a 10,000-pound shipment of roofing material from Honolulu.”

Lynden warehouse
Photo: Lynden's Honolulu warehouse

In Hawaii, Lynden is known for caring about customers and the community. “We’ve kept the same name since the very beginning – not acquiring new companies and changing people and services,” Ringling explains. “We don’t brag about what we do, we just quietly go about our business.”

Just last month, Lynden quietly donated the shipping of two containers of popcorn for the annual Boy Scouts popcorn drive. Lynden employees unpacked the containers and then assisted with the distribution of the popcorn to fundraising locations around Honolulu. Lynden also helped bring the Lost Heroes Art Quilt to the state capitol this fall.

“This is a family owned company, and I think people feel that sense of family, or Aloha, in everything Lynden does,” Ringling explains. “After 25 years I still enjoy my job and each of our customers. Here in Honolulu, Aloha means more than just hello and goodbye. It means treating everyone with a spirit of harmony, affection and mutual respect.”

Tags: Lynden International, 25th Anniversary in Hawaii, Shipping to Hawaii, Lynden employees, Hawaii

Lynden Air Cargo supports Gulf response efforts

Posted on Thu, Dec 30, 2010

Lynden Air Cargo’s N403LC is shown here on one of the 81 aerial oil-dispersant missions Lynden flew in support of BP’s Deepwater Horizon response efforts in the Gulf of Mexico earlier this year.


Dispersant flights
Dispersant flights

Dispersant flights - back view
View from inside the plane

The first L-382G began flying missions in April, followed by the second aircraft, N401LC, in June. Both aircraft finished work in the gulf in July when the well was permanently capped. Flights operated out of Stennis International Airport in Mississippi. Chief Pilot and Captain Mike Redmon and 35 Lynden Air Cargo employees were involved in the project.

Lynden Air Cargo has helped with disaster relief all around the world, including relief flights to Haiti in early 2010 and delivering emergency supplies to Samoa and Indonesia after the earthquakes in late 2009.

Tags: Relief Flights, Hercules, Lynden Air Cargo, Relief Efforts, Disaster Relief, Disaster Relief Logistics, Alaska

Lynden ranked the 7th top business in Alaska

Posted on Wed, Dec 22, 2010

Alaska Business Monthly magazine and the Alaska State Chamber of Commerce ranked Lynden Inc. seventh among 40 Alaskan-owned and operated companies. Lynden provides 698 jobs in Alaska and 2,164 jobs worldwide. “These companies have weathered the storm, and have come out on top, providing jobs, dividends and a host of other benefits to the Alaska and worldwide economies,” says Jim Martin, Alaska Business Monthly President.

You can read more in Alaska Business Monthly's report (PDF) on the Top 49 Alaskan-owned and -operated companies.

Tags: Lynden, Alaska Business Monthly, Alaska, top Alaskan companies

New Mobile Shipping App created by Lynden

Posted on Mon, Dec 20, 2010

Last month, Lynden put customer service directly into customers’ hands by adding a new mobile web application for shipping. The new app provides shippers with accurate, up-to-date information and control of shipments directly from their hand held smart phones. Available for iPhone and Blackberry, the app allows a customer to take care of a variety of shipping tasks – tracking freight, requesting rate quotes and locating Lynden service centers – all from the palm of their hand. A clickable map to locate service center information will be available soon. The app also includes links to Lynden’s website, blog, Facebook and Twitter pages.

Customers may download the new app to their smart phones at http://www.lynden.com/mobile.

 

Mobile Shipping App

Tags: Mobile Shipping App, Lynden, Shipping App, Innovative transportation solutions

Darigold selects Lynden Transport to move products to Alaska stores

Posted on Fri, Dec 17, 2010

When a Wal-Mart customer in Kenai places a carton of milk in their shopping cart, that milk made its way to Alaska via Lynden Transport – at least since September of this year. Thanks to innovations in equipment, customer service and value, Darigold chose Lynden Transport to move its milk and dairy products supplied to Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores in Anchorage, Fairbanks and Kenai.

The product originates from the Darigold plant in Seattle, which is the same facility Milky Way delivers raw product to from dairy farms in Eastern Washington and other locations.

Refrigerated truck for Darigold products

(Lynden designed a refrigerated trailer, similar to this one, to allow double-stacking of Darigold products.)

“We knew from our relationship with LTI, Inc. on milk hauling that this new project would be handled with the same professionalism,” says Wayne Cottrell, Darigold Senior Manager Supply Chain-Logistics. “Lynden has shipped over 100 trailers to date without issue. They understand the local dynamics unique to Alaska.”

According to Lynden Transport Northwest Regional Sales Manager Russ Walker, many Lynden employees were involved in securing the business, including Lee Peterson, Charlie Mottern, Jerry Wendorf, Paul Grimaldi, Mike Oliver, Alex McKallor and Jim Beck.

The project required plenty of meetings and planning ahead of time. Russ went to Alaska in September with Darigold representatives to meet the Anchorage operations team of Blaine Ghan, Jered Post and Andy Collins. “The folks at Darigold were very impressed with the enthusiasm and willingness to get the job done right by the Anchorage operations staff,” he says.

To move the dairy products efficiently, Lynden designed a three-axle 28-foot refrigerated trailer with the K-beam system to allow double stacking of packages. The new reefers will be capable of handling 45,000 pounds of net payload. Lynden trucks the Darigold packages to the dock in Tacoma where they are loaded onto steamship for delivery in Alaska. Lynden then completes truck delivery of the products to Sam's Club and Wal-Mart stores.

In August the first test shipment to Fairbanks went off without a hitch, but the day of the actual changeover was not so smooth.

Darigold experienced an unusual mechanical problem, and product that was supposed to be ready at 10 a.m. on the day of the sailing was not ready until around 10 p.m. “We had five loads to pick up in Seattle and needed to have through the gate at the steamship lines in Tacoma by 11 p.m.” Russ explains. “Kreig DeYoung was working operations that night and somehow got it done. I didn’t ask how, but it was Lynden ‘can do’ spirit at its best.”

Lynden Transport will carry Darigold products to Alaska for the next five years, per the new agreement. Darigold products also move via Alaska Marine Lines barges into Juneau and Ketchikan from Seattle, and Brown Line hauls Darigold products to Costco stores in Washington and Idaho.

Tags: Lynden, trucking to Alaska, Alaska Marine Lines, Refrigerated Trucks, Milky Way, Darigold, Lynden Transport, Alaska, shipping to Alaska

Priceless John Lennon artifacts shipped to LA museum

Posted on Wed, Dec 01, 2010

The Lynden International staff in Orlando is getting used to high-profile moves. After handling a project for the Dalai Lama’s visit to New York earlier this year, the station was asked to move former Beatle John Lennon’s personal artifacts from Orlando’s Hard Rock Café to the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. On Oct. 4, the museum opened the exhibit “John Lennon, Songwriter” in association with Hard Rock International. The exhibit celebrates the 70th anniversary of Lennon’s birth on Oct. 9, 1940.

>John Lennon
Photo credit: Iain Macmillan/©Yoko Ono (www.grammy.com)

Lynden was entrusted with Lennon’s famous white suit, a handwritten letter from 1962, a 1967 album sleeve with Lennon’s handwriting and his private diary and notebook from 1967. The four items were insured by Lloyd’s of London for $12.5 million and were packaged together in a 29-inch by 24-inch crate weighing only 20 pounds.

The shipment was booked as a rush and flew overnight to Los Angeles. For security purposes, one dedicated driver picked up the crate and delivered it to the waiting plane. “The customer was aware of where the shipment was at all times – when it was picked up, when it was in the air and when the POD (proof of delivery) was signed,” explains Danny LaVallee, Lynden International Customer Service Representative. “This was one-of-a-kind cargo and we treated it with TLC.”

The Hard Rock Café has been a Lynden customer since 1994. “We move mostly clothing for the Hard Rock to Hawaii and other points,” says Danny, “but this shipment was a big deal. We felt honored to be trusted with something so valuable.”

Tags: Lynden International, remarkable shipments, shipping, The Beatles, John Lennon

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