Cogent started off as a family business providing cargo transportation services with a small fleet of trucks.
With a focus on providing our customers with an unwavering commitment to total quality service and excellence, the family business grew steadily into a sole proprietorship named as Soon Hock Transport. Subsequently, it evolved into a private limited company known as Soon Hock Transportation Pte. Ltd.
Cogent expanded its operations to include container depot and warehousing services, Soon Hock Transportation obtained its first two adjoining plots of land located at 29 and 31 Penjuru Lane where the first head office was built. During the 1980s, Cogent also successfully established valuable working relationships with a number of large local and international companies.
In the early 1990s, Cogent came out with its Safety Management System in accordance with the statutory safety requirements set by the National Environment Agency (NEA) Pollution Control Department. This system ensured that Cogent consistently achieved high safety standards required for the management and storage of hazardous chemicals.
Soon Hock Transportation continued to expand its businesses and ventured into the dedicated container depot business by acquiring Cogent Container Services Pte. Ltd. Cogent expanded its container depot business with the newly acquired 200,000 square foot plot of land at 19 Tuas Avenue 20. 3 years after the acquisition, Cogent went on to secure several major shipping companies as clientele based on its deep understanding of its customers’ needs and requirements.
In May 1995, Cogent became one of the first logistics operators in Singapore to obtain an ISO9002:1994 certification. The certification by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) certifies that all working processes are properly documented and comply with internationally standardised system quality requirements.
Cogent entered a niche market in operating one of the few chemical warehouses in Singapore. It was licensed by the NEA Pollution Control Department and the Singapore Civil Defence Force in July 1996, to store a diverse range of chemicals and hazardous materials in a four-storey toxic chemical warehouse with an approximate size of 120,000 square feet at 60 Tuas Crescent. This positioned Cogent to take advantage of the increasing demand for chemical storage in the market. This also began Cogent’s active involvement in warehousing, transportation, packing and drumming of hazardous chemicals and chemical compounds on site.
Cogent constantly ensures that it is updated with the latest technologies to handle hazardous chemicals, while being compliant with prevailing governmental and regulatory safety procedures and requirements.
Cogent consolidated and streamlined all existing resources by integrating its container, warehousing and transportation operations together under Cogent Container Services Pte. Ltd, which was later renamed as SH Cogent Logistics Pte. Ltd.
Since the formation of Jurong Island’s petrochemicals hub, SH Cogent Logistics continuously sought for larger plots of land to expand its operation scale. In 2002, Cogent successfully obtained a 300,000 square foot depot at 30 Tembusu Avenue in Jurong Island which provided a storage space of more than 3,000 TEUs (Twenty-Feet Equivalent Units).
Furthermore, Cogent expanded its specialised and professional vehicle and equipment maintenance team at 30 Tembusu Avenue to maintain and service more than 100 prime movers and over 400 trailers in aim of ensuring smooth operations.
In 2005, Cogent obtained approval from Land Transport Authority (LTA) to be one of the few appointed operators to provide Export Processing Zone (EPZ) services for the automotive logistics industry. Its comprehensive services include de-registration and export of pre-owned motor vehicles as well as storage of used/de-registered vehicles pending export or scrap.
Cogent made a strategic and significant investment to purchase vehicles and additional depot handling equipment such as forklifts and reach stackers, which can stack up to 9 containers in height. This investment in equipment and vehicles effectively increased Cogent’s depot storage capacity for containers and its overall effectiveness in operations.
To provide more comprehensive warehouse services for our customers, SH Cogent Logistics ventured into operating a Zero-GST (ZG) warehouse at our existing warehouse at 31 Penjuru Lane.
SH Cogent Logistics embraced new technology and adopted effective electronic management methods such as container trucking management system, warehouse management system, container depot management system and vehicle tracking system.
Cogent was one of the forerunners to invest in electronic systems and implemented GPS track-and-trace systems for its large fleet of vehicles, which comprised more than 100 prime movers, trucks and lorries, and over 400 trailers. These new systems increased operational efficiency and increased efficient handling of container shipments.
In July 2008, Cogent acquired Cogent Investment Group Pte Ltd. and Cogent Automotive Logistics Pte. Ltd. In doing so, Cogent further expanded its one-stop comprehensive automotive logistics services to include vehicle-related storage, transportation, port and customs clearance, freight management and EPZ operations. This marked the start of its collaboration with LTA in the repossession of cars with expired road taxes, and the impounding of illegally modified cars. Cogent also supported the Singapore Police Force in the removal and towing of accident vehicles to the designated police pounds.
In July 2008, Cogent shifted its headquarters to 7 Penjuru Close. This meant its headquarters along with its automotive logistics services, warehousing operations, and transportation management would be under the one roof of an expansive 400,000 square foot premise.
The S$24 million headquarters also housed part of Cogent’s EPZ and chemical warehouses. Cogent obtained licences to store dangerous goods at its new headquarters to enable its customers to enjoy a full suite of efficient logistics solutions at competitive rates.
In August 2008, SH Cogent Logistics further acquired a 170,000 square foot premise at 1 Chia Ping Road with a single-storey warehouse and a two-storey building as a part of our strategic plans to expand our warehousing portfolio.
Cogent was certified with an ISO9001:2000 award for our warehousing, storage and drumming services by the International Organisation for Standardisation. Cogent’s attainment of two ISOs was an indicator of its commitment to high quality services for our customers.
Based on its strong understanding of the customers’ needs and requirements, Cogent grew and expanded its customer base securing contracts with several leading multinational companies in Singapore’s Oil & Gas industry. This was a testament of Cogent’s commitment to mutually beneficial long-term partnerships with our customers.
In July 2009, Cogent received the Meritorious Defence Partner Award from the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) in recognition of our outstanding commitment and contribution towards National Defence.
25 February 2010 marked the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Cogent. It announced that its ordinary shares in the capital of Cogent were admitted to the Official List of the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited. The listing on SGX involved a restructuring exercise where Cogent Holdings Limited acquired both SH Cogent Logistics Pte. Ltd. and Cogent Automotive Logistics Pte. Ltd.
The listing exercise also involved a sale of 92 million Invitation Shares at S$0.22 each which raised approximately S$9.1 million for Cogent’s future expansion. S$6.1 million of the Initial Public Offering (IPO) proceeds was intended to be used to expand its container depot and warehouse capacity, as well as to consolidate all of its warehouse facilities from various locations into a standalone logistics hub.
Cogent took over the lease of the largest container depot premises in Singapore with an approximate size of 1.4 million square feet at 11 Jalan Terusan. The container depot is capable of storing more than 20,000 TEUs (Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units) of containers and to facilitate all logistics processes on site. This piece of land is also utilised as storage space for oil and gas equipment and EPZ. By enabling customers to process and store a wider range of goods at a single site, the need for customers to incur additional transportation charges was eliminated.
On 12 August 2011, Cogent was awarded lease from Jurong Town Corporation (JTC Corporation) for an approximately 60,398 square metres of land at Tanjong Kling in Jurong Industrial Estate to construct a standalone integrated full-service logistics hub.
Cogent commenced the construction of one of the largest one-stop integrated logistics hub in Singapore upon securing the lease at Tanjong Kling. The integrated logistics hub, known as Cogent One-Stop Logistics Hub, is a six-storey building comprising of five storeys of warehouse spaces, one-storey of container survey/inspection centre, and an integrated container depot on the rooftop (also known as Sky Depot). It is the world’s first building to have a container depot on the roof top, innovatively designed, constructed and pioneered by the Cogent Group’s Chairman. The hub will propel Cogent to a higher level of operational and cost efficiency by consolidating all existing operations sites to a single location.
To boost the diversity of the Cogent Group’s overall growth capacity, the Group tendered and was awarded the master tenancy of a 1 million square foot state-property at 200 Turf Club Road Plot 6 on 10 October 2011. Cogent Land Capital Pte. Ltd. was incorporated to manage the operations at 200 Turf Club Road, extending itself as a property management arm under the Group. Cogent Land revamped and rebranded the old Turf Club building into a lifestyle destination called “The Grandstand” which commenced operations in March 2012. The Grandstand provides a one-stop destination for various family and lifestyle activities, as well as housing one of the biggest pre-owned car malls in Singapore with over 150 car showrooms, 3,800 cars and over 580 models.
In 2013, Cogent participated in The Next Generation Container Port (NGCP) Challenge jointly organised by Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI) and Maritime and Port Authority (MPA). NGCP is a competition to encourage participants from all over the world to submit innovative proposals and ideas on how to plan, design and operate the next generation of container ports that exemplify performance, productivity and sustainability.
The Cogent team was shortlisted as one of the seven finalists from the pool of over 900 participants from various countries to compete in finals in which we received an award of commendation of US$100,000. It was an honour to have competed as equals on an international platform with other professionals and institutions.
Cogent Group was honored to be invited to the Land & Space Optimisation Forum organised by Jurong Town Corporation (JTC Corporation) to share its ideas and success of Cogent One-Stop Logistics Hub in our land optimising projects and initiatives. The forum is intended to encourage more industrialists to look into transforming their business models, improving productivity and re-engineering their processes to move from land to space, and reduce business costs.
Cogent is 1 out of only 3 Singapore companies that was honoured by Forbes Asia in its “Best under a Billion” 2014 list. Forbes Asia’s annual “Best Under a Billion” list honours the region’s 200 most dynamic publicly-traded firms with annual sales under US$1 billion a year and with track records of sustained growth and profitability.
Cogent Group moves forward with its growth strategy to expand into Malaysia by establishing a subsidiary, SH Cogent Logistics Sdn. Bhd. and buying over the joint venture based in Port Klang, known as JW Cogent Logistics Sdn. Bhd. It aims to expand its quality services to serve the logistics needs of a vastly larger market.