Coal and Mineral Mining Solutions: What Manufacturers Can Learn from 'Pit To Port'

We at MetalMiner are always on the lookout for sourcing efficiencies in the industrial metals supply chain — and those who make said efficiencies their business. That’s one of the main reasons we chose the sponsors that we did for our recent MetalMiner and Spend Matters conference, Commodity EDGE; they are all at the top of their game in their respective industries.

One of those sponsors, Triple Point Technology (TPT), operates in the commodity-supply-chain and risk management world. In a recent case study outlined in a Spend Matters Perspectives research paper, after hiring TPT, a global consumer packaged goods (CPG) company reaped numerous benefits, including “the ability to better manage overall margins due to complete pricing visibility across the marketing and sales functions.”

This clearly has implications in the metals sourcing world, and from a raw materials standpoint, Triple Point has made inroads into the coal and minerals supply chain specifically by acquiring QMASTOR, whose “Pit to Port is the most complete end-to-end mining software solution.”

How Exactly Does Pit To Port Work?

Basically, QMASTOR’s Pit to Port software is used to “plan, record, track, optimize, account, reconcile and report the tonnage, quality and value of bulk materials from mine to point of export or consumption,” according to TPT’s site.

Any management team, it goes without saying, needs the wherewithal to keep track of the millions of tons of coal and other raw materials and minerals — otherwise, inefficiencies would erode margins very quickly. In fact, according to QMASTOR, they are contracted out to manage 1 billion tons of “bulk commodity movements” per year in coal, iron ore, copper, nickel, bauxite, lead, molybdenum, silver, and gold.

“The system synchronizes operations, logistics, marketing and commercial functions,” which streamlines the view of the entire supply chain. QMASTOR’s software plays in some pretty big mining companies’ systems — BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Vale, Anglo American, and Xstrata, to name just a few.

Of course, if your manufacturing or distribution company is not a huge behemoth like the Rios and BHPs of the world, you may not be tracking billions of tons of materials. However, for midsize and larger manufacturers, understanding the basis of commodity management tools such as these can help retain — and even increase — profits.

Check back in for a follow-up on this post, in which MetalMiner plans to share insights from TPT/QMASTOR (and another recent acquisition, Algosys) on what lessons manufacturers can learn from the operation of these systems.

Image source: Triple Point Technology

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