Muge ALANBAY worked in the freight forwarding sector for 20 years before starting to work as the Network Manager of FMI Groupe in 2017. She is very excited to develop further contacts and assist to WOF Members all around the World for their shipments from/to France and Algiers.
- FMI has recently celebrated it’s 30th anniversary, what were the biggest challenges you have successfully tackled in your history?
Of course within 3 decades FMI went thru a lot, as such any freight forwarding company would, but the most recent and most deeply effecting one.. I can easily say was the COVID period. It effected not only the market/clients/agents/ created a change in the whole process of a freight forwarder, but also effected people in some deep level, physically and psychologically and as I m sure you will agree; in our job the main source is human. But I can happily say we grew out of it stronger all together as a Team.
- We face an economic downturn presently, after a very hot period in transport and logistics during the last three years, what are your expectations for the year 2023?
Between 2023 – 2026 I believe we will finally face the real effects of the COVID period, the War in Ukraine and changing World market dynamics. It is not only for our sector, for all the markets these will be difficult times. But especially for us with the very harsh decrease on freight levels the profits all forwarders enjoyed in the last 3 years, will be difficult to hold on to and already going-on energy crisis will not help us either. I expect many small to medium size freight forwarders and liners to be purchased by bigger groups/ entities. This in return, within the next decade will deepen the problem of monopolization in our sector.
- What is your experience with WOF Events and WOF Alliance as new platforms for the Transport and Supply Chain Industry?
Indeed we had been members to WOF less than a year by now, but what I can say is that the member quality is really high. Also, even though I had been only to one WOF Event so far, the concept was quite different than the other Networks ‘ events. I really enjoyed to be within the same environment with SS Liners/ Air Lines/ Airports / Terminals as well as our fellow freight forwarder members of WOF. The experience was totally different and it felt more like a full concepteual look to Logistics. I can say I have learnt a lot from the mini seminars held and I m certainly looking forward to be in the next Event
- WOF Group was developed out of the booming Central East European market, how important is this region for your business?
Frankly speaking, as our main job is Sea and than Air freight, we don’t have much business with Central Eastern Europe (as this area is mostly active for land traffic to/ from France). But I can say we had been receiving many in/ outbound France cross trade requests for sea/air shipments from CEE members of WOF.
And even though WOF is developed for CEE market, I had already developed some really good business for USA / MEXICO / ISRAEL via WOF (some of these agents I have only met in the last Event held in Prague).
- Where do you see the biggest strength of FMI Groupe in the cooperation with your business partners and customers?
As I mentioned earlier, I believe Human Resources is the main strength in freight forwarding industry. So I can easily say the biggest strength of FMI Groupe is our people and it starts from our Founder Mr Vincent, who really puts effort for each and every member of FMI Family. So we all forward the same approach to our colleagues/ partners/ customers. I can easily say that in FMI we have one of the fastest respond time to agents requests (when I observe the market from Networks/ colleagues/ agents/ fellow competitors).
- Which recommendation do you give to your customers for their global supply chains in the year 2023?
End clients will face a lot of rate increases during 2023 but they will have an easier year to find space and move their cargo on time in general when compared to last 2 -3 years. Specific to French market, as we are facing several strikes on French sea/air ports since late January(and as so far it seems to continue), the pre/on carriage will be difficult for French clients. Clients shall give more attention to pre planning for their orders during 2023.