Holt Logistics Corp. has announced it has reached an agreement with Bermuda Container Line (BCL) to provide stevedoring and terminal services for BCL’s weekly shipping service to and from Bermuda. The agreement will become effective in the first quarter of 2014, when BCL will move its U.S. port of call from Elizabeth, New Jersey, to Holt’s Packer Avenue Marine Terminal in South Philadelphia. The agreement is attributable in part to negotiations and advocacy work done by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter, the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, Philadelphia Regional Port Authority (PRPA) and Holt Logistics Corp.

“This is another exciting development for the future of importing and exporting from Philadelphia,” said Thomas J. Holt Jr., President of Astro Holdings, lessee of the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal. “Business at Packer Avenue continues to grow, and the decision by Bermuda Container Line to move service here shows that the shipping community is taking notice of the strategic advantages offered by our facilities. We are grateful for the hard work by Governor Corbett, Mayor Nutter, the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, PRPA and other stakeholders who made this decision possible. On behalf of the City of Philadelphia, we extend a heartfelt welcome to BCL and look forward to a fruitful business relationship.”

BCL has been in continuous operation since 1979 and is dedicated to transporting to Bermuda a wide range of essential commodities, including general supplies, perishable goods, vehicles and heavy machinery. BCL’s ship, the Oleander, is a combination container and roll-on/roll-off vessel capable of carrying 360 TEU as well as 44 cars in an enclosed garage area. The Oleander has electrical plugs and generating capacity to allow it to carry 88 refrigerated containers, and hoistable car decks in its interior, which allow it to carry large roll-on/roll-off cargo such as construction equipment.

Neptune Group Limited Chairman (owners of BCL) John Wight commented. “Moving BCL’s departure point South to the Holt Terminal in Philadelphia required careful due diligence and engagement with stakeholders. We plan a smooth transition and look forward to elevating customer service levels and business opportunities for our customers”