For the OCEAN FREIGHT segment, we spoke to Björn Handorn, our Global Head of Ocean Freight.
Björn, why don't you start by telling us something about your personal background. What kind of training did you have? How long have you been working in the ocean freight segment?
I completed an apprenticeship as a forwarding agent and then worked exclusively in the Ocean Freight segment. In 2007 I made a side trip to a container shipping company for 3 years to get to know the other side of ocean shipping.
How long have you been working for SENATOR INTERNATIONAL?
On October 1st 2020 I had my 5-year anniversary at SENATOR INTERNATIONAL.
I started as Trade Lane Manager for Import - Europe and was allowed to take over the management of global sea freight 2 years ago.
What are the constant challenges in your work, especially in the area of Ocean Freight?
Generally speaking, you can say that in this segment you are always faced with challenges. Starting with the mergers of various shipowners in the last few years and ending with the constantly changing and volatile market. Digitalization in this area is constantly increasing, which also increases the demands of our customers from year to year. But it is exactly these constantly changing aspects that make this area so interesting.
When we talk specifically about Ocean Freight at SENATOR INTERNATIONAL What are our unique selling points?
We have our own worldwide SENATOR network of experts in this field, which enables us to serve any type of business professionally and successfully. In addition to standard FCL and LCL shipments, we offer the full range of services such as Project / Break Bulk, Buyers Consol, own consolidated containers and so on with our own specialists in the respective segments. SENATOR INTERNATIONAL is still an owner-managed family business. There are flat hierarchies and the decision-making processes are short. This enables us to react to new situations at short notice.
Looking ahead to the coming years: What are the chances of training or a professional career in this branch for interested parties?
Despite - or even because of - the ongoing digitalization and changes in processes, global trade will tend to increase. Ocean Freight will remain one of the most important branches of logistics and it will become increasingly important for every company in the future to be able to attract young people who are open to new technology. Well-trained specialists will continue to be needed in this industry.
We support the next generation with a well-founded education, as we offer it at SENATOR INTERNATIONAL. In this way they will be able to find their way in the various segments of our industry. I can only advise everyone to get their own picture of our diverse and interesting industry.
Finally, a look ahead. The Corona crisis has changed the entire industry and created new challenges. How will the Ocean Freight industry develop in the foreseeable future?
On the whole, Ocean Freight has so far come through the crisis in a fairly stable manner.
Shipowners are reporting record results in every quarter and volumes have not fallen noticeably compared to the previous year. We hope that this trend will continue and look ahead with optimism.
Björn, thank you very much for the interesting talk.