Logistics: Its origin, conceptual evolution and meaning in contemporary usage [Logistiek: Die oorsprong, konseptuele ontwikkeling en betekenis daarvan in hedendaagse gebruik]
This article traces the origin of the word logistics, outlines its conceptual evolution, and explains its meaning in contemporary usage. The contextual development of the concept is traced from its origin in Greek, along with its successive adoption in Late Latin, French and Dutch, up to its contemporary usage in Afrikaans. The establishment of the French logistique as military concept during the Napoleonic wars, and its later extension to commercial usage subsequent to the Second World War are described. The development since then of the meaning of the concept in a commercial context is detailed. Contemporary descriptions of logistics relating to its meaning in a commercial sense and in common parlance are discussed. Thereafter the article offers a contemporary definition of logistics in a commercial context. Finally it is indicated how effective business logistics adds value.