Kelly Bunyan is the Owner and Managing Director of a group of successful freight networks, headquartered in London, UK: World Freight Network (WFN), Specialist Freight Networks (SFN) and International Freight Network (IFN).
Kelly comments: "With freight forwarding confirmed by governments as an essential industry, the ongoing worldwide situation has highlighted just how vital a role forwarders play in keeping
supply chains moving.
Our networks are specifically for small to medium sized forwarders; independent companies who are competing with 'the big boys' (as the large freight companies are sometimes called). We provide our members with the necessary global coverage and support to compete.
As one of our members mentioned recently, 'Almost all freight forwarders will join a networking alliance, if not already - independent forwarders will find it too difficult to proceed without
one.' We are receiving new applications each week from forwarders who agree, and want to give themselves the contacts and support structure that a network provides."
Debbie Constantine, Group Operations Manager, added: "One of the main subjects that has been raised this year when talking to our members, is the future of the freight forwarding industry. Unsurprisingly, our members say that there are many challenges to be met and difficult times to weather, with one member commenting: "The future right now looks uncertain. We will certainly have to adjust our companies to these new times."
Other members offered some encouragement to smaller companies and practical tips to their fellow agents on ways to approach the current challenges:
"Independents have a place in our industry. There is no doubt that many of them offer a better and a more personal service, which the 'big boys'/multinationals do not always give. Perseverance is key. Keep in touch with your clients and keep knocking on doors."
"In most cases, small and middle-sized independent forwarders cannot compare with large forwarders in price. But we absolutely can compete on quality services with reasonable prices. And there is a niche market for this."
Despite the difficulties raised, there were also some positive remarks, with one member saying, "I am very optimistic for our industry and our role. We need to seize the opportunity to meet the challenges." And yet another commenting, "The future looks bright! The world economy cannot do without freight forwarders."
Debbie concluded, “What has become abundantly clear to our Head Office team is just how resilient and positive our members are. Forwarders have to be flexible and ready to think on
their feet most every day... this has surely served them well this year. We are so impressed with their remarkable ability to adapt, and we look forward to continuing our journey together
as a united family."
As one member put it: "We will face a lot of challenges in the coming future, but I believe they will only change the way we play the game, they will not end the game. The logistics industry will keep growing, changing and evolving. We have to keep up with the trends."
Read more about Kelly’s networks on the links below: