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Issue 7 2020 - FBJ Ireland

training program will upskill staff specifi cally in

the area of customs procedures and documentation for continuous or future trade with or through the UK. Logiskills recently launched

a Customs Program to support client demand for customs

brokers by: Identifying

the subject

matter expert - we engage with companies to assist them in hiring the customs knowledge where it is not available in-house; Draſt ing an internal training

programme - the subject expert draſt s up an internal training program in conjunction with the

department heads along with support from the customs and freight management systems soſt ware providers; Creating a resource plan

- estimate the number of personnel required and the staggered hiring schedule so as not to overwhelm available resources. The potential number

A thoroughly Irish forwarder

FBJ editor Chris Lewis talks to Balázs Bekes, country manager for Ireland at freight forwarder Maurice Ward

Chris Lewis: I understand that the company was actually established fi rst in Ireland in 1968. What activities did it carry out then?

Balázs Bekes: Yes, Maurice Ward Group (MWG) was founded in Dublin, Ireland in 1968. It is an Irish family owned organization. Our private ownership structure allows us to focus on long term strategic goals rather than concerning ourselves solely with the results of the next quarter. Our mission is to provide a credible alternative solution for the European continent as it is the largest trading block in the world and possibly the most complicated to manage. Much of the area is now encompassed by the EU, enabling free movement of goods, people and capital. With more than 50 years

of experience in the logistics fi eld, MWG has provided global freight forwarding, warehousing, logistics and customs clearance solutions. Our organic growth, singular business culture and truly innovative thinking give a competitive advantage. A single, proprietary IT platform delivers purchase order tracking throughout the supply chain, from factory door through distribution centres all the way

to the end-user.

CL: What offi ces or depots does MWG currently have in Ireland and elsewhere? What are its activities in the Irish market?

MWG currently has two

warehouses in Ireland - Longford and Garristown, both close to Dublin. Both locations were chosen to satisfy


needs in terms of location and quality. The Longford warehouse is a very modern one for customers of Trend Technologies. All our facilities have 24/7 monitored security. The second branch offi ce in

Ireland opened in Shannon in 1989. Currently, we operate over 40 owned offi ces in more than 25 European countries. Maurice Ward Ireland

provides air freight and consolidated international services, FCL/LCL international services, customs and trade compliance, road freight to and from European countries and warehousing & distribution. In Ireland Maurice Ward off ers

international transport, customs brokerage and logistics services to its clients with a specifi c focus on aviation, food, pharma and the medical device sectors. Our client base ranges

from small, medium to large multinational organisations.

CL: How has the Irish freight market been developing

recently? Has there been any disruption as a result of the Covid virus?

BB: Considerable eff orts are being made to prepare for the challenges lying ahead due to Brexit. We have been focusing on internal and external training of our staff , updating our systems, assisting our clients and engaging with various government bodies to make sure that we can off er a compliant service to our partners. The Corona virus had a

mixed eff ect in our business and operations. Some parts and sectors had ‘fallen off the cliff ’ while others have seen unprecedented increase in volumes and turnover. We are learning new things every day and trying to adapt to the new challenges. Being a very agile organisation we are very used to this on a daily basis.

CL: How do you see the Irish market going forward?

We are positive about the

future and see lots of new opportunities cropping up. We are continuously preparing ourselves

with training,

developing new products, investing in people, new equipment and facilities to make sure that we are ready and able to meet the requirements of our clients.

of entries and processing abilities of a new team with little practical experience should all be considered; Team member selection -

we source and screen trainees against the client’s specifi c requirements. Suitable candidates are hired initially as temps while they complete their


training and induction; and: Training and induction -

Logiskills enrolls the selected candidates on the ‘Clear Customs’ course which they complete in addition to the client’s onsite training program. Aſt er a successful probationary period, the temps are hired as permanent employees with the

DSV Road lays plans for the future

DSV Road has off ered a Good Distribution Practice (GDP) industry-approved service for pharma for some years, says managing director in Ireland, Jesper Thygesen. Now, the operator – Ireland’s largest in the road sector – plans to expand this vertical. “Ireland is a major hub for pharma companies and we want to be able to off er the best service within this sector,” he explains. Biotech and pharma are

possibly now the leading Irish industry and there are already plenty of human and animal medical products to be moved, without even considering the ramifi cations of the country becoming a manufacturing centre for the Covid vaccine. Meanwhile, though, DSV

Road has had to cope with the immediate eff ects of the Covid crisis, as has every other operator in the sector. Thygesen explains: “The initial impact was up to a 40% reduction in volumes which happened almost overnight. However, we are now getting back to near 100% of pre-Covid volumes and we expect the last quarter to be pretty close to normal – lockdown restrictions permitting.” However,

capacity in the

domestic spot transport market has been hit as many hauliers and owner operators have cut back and only operate vehicles where

will take advantage of that. Our Nordics volumes will most likely be unaff ected, but European loads will no doubt be moved from the

miles from Dublin is still planning to move to larger facilities by summer 2022 and work is currently in progress.

E-commerce trend is gathering pace, say IWT

Business for forwarding and logistics company IWT never really slowed down during the Covid crisis, say joint managing directors Colin Dunne and Paul Scully. While some industries like construction did experience a sharp drop at the outset, and the High Street remains very quiet, other sectors like e-commerce went the other way, they say. IWT’s own e-commerce off ering

has been very strong and indeed the operator’s own e-commerce business now accounts for around 3-400 truckloads a week, by no means exclusively in Ireland. Whatever the company’s full name – Irish Warehousing and Transport – might suggest, a lot of its activity these days is within Continental Europe or the UK. In fact, IWT operates a 30-strong dedicated fl eet for e-commerce in the UK, and

it recently took on an additional three members of staff there. E-commerce business is

growing rapidly in Ireland, says Scully. “It is very exciting. Ireland has moved rapidly online. We have a relatively young population here and, maybe, the pandemic has forced the pace of change more rapidly.” However, at the moment many

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they are guaranteed work, he adds. DSV

itself “reacted fairly

quickly in order to match capacity and volumes and made some organisational


However, these were mainly part of our optimisation strategy already planned so the redundancies were limited. As the volumes have picked back up we have relied on automation and other effi ciencies to counter the additional work.” The Covid crisis is not the only

issue that DSV Road has had to consider. Brexit is looming and this could have a fundamental impact on how freight is moved to and from Ireland. Thygesen explains: “We are

defi nitely considering moving more volumes onto the direct sailings from Ireland to the continent. There has been a signifi cant increase in off erings from the ro ro operators and we

client. The client then repeats the selection and training process as and when required. As for Logiskills, we used the

quiet time of lockdown to update all sales and marketing activities with a new branding to refl ect the fresh, responsive and dynamic approach we take to recruiting for the industry.

UK landbridge to going direct to a large extent.” Moreover: “We believe there will be a need for dedicated staff within customs clearance and facilitation – especially on the UK/ Ireland traffi cs. This is especially important in order to keep the disruption to a minimum in a market that requires 24-48 hour transit. We have started the training and are in the process of doing fi nal tests on the systems deployed to handle customs. On the Nordics and European markets we are mainly looking at transit documents for the UK landbridge which we are well prepared for.” DSV Road continues to focus

on tracking information across groupage, part and full load deliveries. Thygesen says: “We probably have one of the most advanced tracking setups in the market for international road transport. Our customers


book online, follow the cargo through

specifi c events and

retrieve delivery information – oſt en within 30 minutes of arrival.” The company, which is based in Naas, County Kildare about 30

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