Issue 5 2020 - Freight Business Journal


One happy family – Ital Logistics marks its first two decades

Manchester based forwarder and groupage operator Ital Logistics celebrates its 20th birthday this August. Over the decades, the company has made a name for itself as a specialist carrier of chemicals and other dangerous goods, as well as freight of all kinds, throughout Italy, Greece and the Iberian Peninsula. However, it still retains the ethos of a family firm and founder Phil Denton is determined to see this continue as the company embarks on the next 20 years of its history. He talks to FBJ editor, Chris Lewis.

How did it all begin?

I started work in the freight industry straight from school with Tower Express in 1978, in Trafford Park, and later in the old Salford docks. Back in those days, Manchester was still a commercial port, hard though it is to believe now. I used to do customs entries and learned how to do consolidations on Tower’s services to Malta and Canada. It was then that I met Jim Woodward, who I often refer to as my mentor

– certainly one of the best teachers anyone in forwarding could hope for. I worked for various

companies in and around Manchester and, in 1989, the company I was with then asked me to manage a new Italian trailer service. Even though I didn’t know it at the time, this was an important turning point in my career, as Italy was to play a very big part in my life. Later, in 1993, I became Italian Route Development Manager at what was then M&S Europe

(later renamed IS Logistics, part of the Italsempione group). Leaving IS Logistics in 1998

I spent two years developing Italian services at a small forwarder in Burnley, alongside ITX Cargo, a spin-off from Italsempione founded in the same year by key personnel from Italsempione; namely Roberto Tagliareni, Dario Bragonzi and Claudio Moresco. Then, Brian Hay, founding

member and later to become CEO of

Cardinal Maritime,

asked me if I had ever thought of setting up my own company. So, with his support, I founded Ital Logistics Limited in 2000, in what was little more than two small brick cubicles at the back of a warehouse in Rochdale, with one other employee. ITX naturally came with me and my former employee closed the service which I had developed, thus giving me a free hand and a great start. The company started off as a partnership between myself,

the three Cardinal

Directors of the time and a small shareholding by Roberto Tagliareni – but since 2015 it has been solely owned by my wife, Dianne, and I.

And how did Ital Logistics evolve over the years?

Needless to say, the Rochdale premises were only short- term. In April 2001 we moved to Eccles where we shared facilities with Cardinal,


moving with them to Sharston where we stayed until 2014. Outgrowing these facilities,

we separated from Cardinal and moved to our present office and depot at Heywood, a 16,000ft² facility over 1¼ acres, with dock-levellers, full access control, 60 day recorded CCTV coverage and secure 24/7 manned ANPR site security. We are a North-west based

company so naturally we have many customers in this region but we have valued clients all over the UK and, indeed, Europe. While Ital started off serving

primarily Italy, over time we have also become one of the leading groupage operators to and from Spain. We also service the rest of the Iberian Peninsula, Greece and, more recently, Malta and France. Also, six years ago, we started sea

our freight

departm en t. Initially, this

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