Special Report: Providing world-class petrochemical logistics

With extensive knowledge of logistics and years of experience in the industry, S.A. TALKE implements proven best practice solutions to improve its customers' processes.

Left to right: Hani Fawzi, site manager, Babar Ahmad, sales and marketing manager, Oliver Klingbeil, managing director, Mohammed Al-Hammed, HR manager, S.A.TALKE.
Left to right: Hani Fawzi, site manager, Babar Ahmad, sales and marketing manager, Oliver Klingbeil, managing director, Mohammed Al-Hammed, HR manager, S.A.TALKE.

With extensive knowledge of logistics and years of experience in the industry, S.A. TALKE implements proven best practice solutions to improve its customers' processes.

S.A. TALKE is a joint venture company between ALFRE TALKE from Germany, SISCO Group from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Al-Jabr Group from the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. The core offerings of the company are on-site operations, logistics, logistics solutions, transport and consulting.

S.A. TALKE offers logistic solutions, logistics analysis, consultancy, optimisation of logistics processes, and turn-key construction of logistics plants to its clients. The company’s logistics solutions business unit develops modern and efficient supply chain concepts tailored to the specific requirements of each customer and site. In 2017, the company increased its volume of business to 8.5 million metric tonnes (MMT) from the 7.4MMT volume of 2016.

On-site operations

One good example of the on-site operation is S.A. TALKE’s activities with a leading manufacturer of polymers in Jubail. The operational start-up was in Q1-2004 and volume handled was 1.6 million tonnes of polypropylene and polyethylene, where activities included packaging; maintenance (machinery and equipment); storage (on-site and off-site); re-bulking of packed material; loading in bags, or bulk; administration (SAP R/3); and silo and dispatch coordination.

“As a performance-oriented business, the downstream business would rather focus on its core competence and let us take care of its on-site logistics. Companies in the sector are increasingly outsourcing their on-site logistics to professional service providers like S.A. TALKE,” says Oliver Klingbeil, managing director of S.A. TALKE in Saudi Arabia.

“We can manage entire logistics centres, or individual facilities on behalf of a downstream company. Our logistic services range from supplying the production process and handling finished goods, to re-packaging and warehouse logistics, as well as packing and preparing goods for transport. Equally important is the fact that we also handle the maintenance and repair of the plants and facilities – which means a big reduction in the workload of the refineries and petrochemical units,” remarks Klingbeil.

“The petrochemical logistics will always be there in different ways to support people in their lives, organisations in doing the businesses, and industry in developing the economy. Our core business will always be the chemical and petrochemical segments; but, logistics is a wide spectrum, and we are exploring alternative segments.”

“The logistic industry is a very dynamic industry which is constantly evolving. The TALKE Group has 70+ years of experience and due to our vast knowledge and experience, we are very well positioned to face any requirements and needs of our customers. We also share our best practices within the group, and our regional team meetings further allow us to develop innovative solutions from the knowledge of lessons learned,” comments Klingbeil.

Team of proven specialists

All of S.A. TALKE’s customers benefit from the expertise of its top-class logistics solutions teams, comprising specialists in various fields who cooperate closely to develop the best possible interdisciplinary solutions. “When starting our consultancy activities, we usually carry out an extensive material flow analysis. Based on the results of this analysis, our teams of specialists will develop a local set-up perfectly adapted to the customer’s plant, or site. Alternatively, they may design a completely new supply chain concept for the client. The optimisation of facilities and processes lies at the heart of their work,” explains Klingbeil.

“However, S.A. TALKE’s Logistics Solutions business unit takes things a step further. Our experts – proven specialists in their fields – can also plan HR and training needs, internal materials handling and plant technology, maintenance intervals, necessary IT infrastructure, materials inventory management, and much more.”

“Chemical companies, and their partners in related industries, wishing to build new plants, or optimise existing facilities can, therefore, benefit, from the beginning, from the knowledge and expertise of our professional consultants. We offer logistic solutions, procurement, construction, engineering, and consultancy,” remarks Klingbeil.

“One good example for this will be an industry leader and producer of petrochemicals, also operating in Jubail Commercial Port. We offered this client contract for design, construction management and operations of logistics facility; EPC contract management in 2009; 81,000M² covered storage area; 1,000TEU container yard; operational contract in 2011; and up to 1.5 million tonnes per annum product handling,” reveals Klingbeil. In recent years, S.A.TALKE significantly increased the size of its team and the total number of manpower went from 500 to 1,500, and the company also increased its Saudisation rate.

“Despite the difficult economic situation and shrinking oil prices, we had another successful year in 2017. Our team managed to secure additional business every year since 2014, and significantly increased revenue. We also managed to secure a new operational site of 50,000M², strategically located just outside the Jubail Commercial Port,” observes Klingbeil.

S.A. TALKE team supervised the development of the site for container and product storage. The site was commissioned during June 2017 and is since used for the storage and handling of a significant amount of containers for few customers.

“Despite the very tight deadlines and the high requirements from customers, we have managed to deliver to our KPIs to all clients. This would not have been achieved without proper planning, starting from the strategic marketing, bidding, project management and operations,” adds Klingbeil.


“Safety is our top priority in all aspects of our business and hence we enforce BBS – behaviour-based safety programme throughout the organisation. The collaboration between Andreas Goebels, HSSEQ manager from our Saudi team, and Babar Ahmad, sales and marketing manager, has been extremely successful in planning and executing several HSSEQ initiatives. Due to this team work and our commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility, the organisation has made significant enhancements to our environment,” reveals Klingbeil.

“The TALKE Group is committed to Corporate Social Responsibility. Our Saudi team kicked off the ‘Waste Free Environment’ campaign on 28 February 2017, where majority of the S.A. TALKE employees and students from the Boy Scouts of Saudi Arabia took part in a beach cleaning activity. The TALKE Group also kicked off a sustainability campaign to increase the awareness of avoiding plastic waste reaching our waterways and oceans,” comments Klingbeil.

S.A.TALKE received several best contractor awards from different customers – appreciation award and GPCA supply chain award for the land category in 2017.

S.A. TALKE achieved a major landmark in the history of its operations with the mobilisation of its truck fleet; achieved six million safe man-hours without lost time injury; successfully executed several social responsibility campaigns to support community and environmental services; and successfully implemented the Blue Room concepts at all project sites.

Keeping abreast of latest developments

“Exhibiting at international trade shows is a great way to advertise to a target market and create brand awareness. Most international industry exhibitions are open to a large and sometimes diverse range of audiences. This provides us with a platform to promote our services to a broader group that may have little, or no knowledge of our services,” says Klingbeil.

“Depending on the type of business, product and market testing can be carried out at trade shows and exhibitions to gain industry, or general opinion about the offering. Being involved in international industry exhibitions provides us with opportunities to branch out to business-to-business trading and create a customer database from the visitors at our display booth. This also helps us to stay informed about the upcoming industry trends.”

“We also continue to invest in the training and development of our team members from all disciplines and ensure that we can forecast any major/minor modernisation of logistics sector. Additionally, we stay informed by continually participating in several industry trade shows at the global level,” remarks Klingbeil. S.A. TALKE considers all its clients as major clients and the company ensures to provide the best quality of service, regardless of the business size of its customer.

Supporting Saudi Vision 2030

“Since Saudi Arabia has released details of its ambitious Vision 2030, we have been working hard to develop our business strategies in-line with the new vision of the Kingdom. This include significant increase in our Saudisation, and hiring of the first female employees. S.A. TALKE is fully committed to providing jobs and opportunities for Saudi youth. We offer a unique and rich working experience, especially for young Saudis who have proven that he/she is capable of excelling in different positions and across different sectors. In 2017, we hired 221 Saudi nationals for various project sites, including young Saudi females in the western region,” reveals Klingbeil.

 “Of course, a lot will depend on the Saudi government and its rules and legislations on which we depend on; but, in my personal opinion S.A.TALKE will be a part of achieving the goals of Vision 2030 and will build our strengths together with the vision of the Kingdom. We have established a lot of programmes for Saudi nationals in cooperation with the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce. I am very positive that the Kingdom will reach the objectives of Vision 2030, and we will be a part of that success,” concludes Klingbeil.

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