Thursday, January 16, 2014

UK Freight Forwarding and Logistics Stakeholders Gather at BIFA 2013 Awards

Another Success to Celebrate 25 Years of Honouring the British Shipping Industry
Shipping News Feature

UK – The most prestigious event of the British freight forwarding calendar, the BIFA awards, took place again today at The Brewery in London and this year was even more special, celebrating as it did with BIFA 2013, 25 years of success for organisers the British International Freight Association. As time has moved on so the annual event has grown and awards for achievement in the various fields of logistics now represent nine distinct, and equally worthwhile, categories, from Project Forwarding and Supply Chain excellence to recognition in the fields of Air and Ocean shipping. A measure of the high esteem in which this event is held can be gained by the fact that every category once again bears the same sponsors name. The categories, sponsors and winners for the BIFA 2013 are as follows:

General categories:

Environment Award, sponsored by Red Recruit:    Damco UK  

Project Forwarding Award, sponsored by Peter Lole & Co:     Spatial Global UK

Special Services Award, sponsored by Forward Computers:    James Cargo Services

Staff Development Award, sponsored by Albacore Systems:     Dachser

Supply Chain Management Award, sponsored by BoxTop Technologies:     Yusen Logistics (UK)

Modal categories:

Air Freight Award, sponsored by IAG Cargo:    OHL International

European Logistics Award, sponsored by TT Club:    DSV Road

Ocean Freight Award, sponsored by CargoWise:    Cardinal Maritime

Individual category:

Young Freight Forwarder Award, sponsored by Virgin Atlantic Cargo: Phoebe Rockwood, Damco UK 

There was an additional award which the Association gave to IAG Cargo, and collected by Stuart Forsyth, as a mark of thanks to a company which historically had sponsored the Air Freight Cargo category award from its inception twenty five years ago right up to the present day, albeit that it is a company evolved from the 2011 merger of Iberia Cargo and the original award sponsors, British Airways World Cargo.  

As ever, there was a particularly loud cheer and prolonged applause for the winner of the young freight forwarder of the year, Phoebe Rockwood of AP Moller-Maersk subsidiary Damco, who has spent her six years in the industry honing her skills in China as well as the UK and looked a little shell shocked after collecting the cheque for £1,000 which accompanied her award. 

The event itself went off well with the large audience consisting of the great and the good of British freight forwarding and other industry stakeholders, all of whom were charmed by the stunning hostess for the day, Julia Bradbury, she of the BBC series Countryfile (also celebrating its Silver Jubilee year this year) and other programmes, who, whilst admitting her logistics knowledge was not her greatest asset, created a wish list of things she would like to have delivered from points around the world, a menu derived principally from some of the manifold sights and experiences she had gained whilst globe-trotting in the course of her work.

BIFA President Sir Peter Bottomley MP again welcomed guests to the 25th BIFA Freight Service Awards luncheon ceremony and, along with Julia Bradbury, presented the finalists with their certificates. Peter Quantrill, BIFA Director General, said:

“Such is the prestige of the event that in this landmark year, the Awards attracted even more entries than usual.  The luncheon represented a splendid landmark, both for the Awards and the Association. I congratulate every company and individual who took the trouble to enter our Freight Service Awards 2013 competition.

“It was a pleasure to reveal a surprise Award for BA World Cargo, now part of IAG Cargo, for its sterling support of our Awards from the very beginning. This very long-standing sponsor has been supporting the Awards for the full 25 years since their inception and, along with valued support of other sponsors, has helped make them possible. Given the strength of support for the Awards, and the enjoyment each luncheon has provided for the last twenty-five years, I have no hesitation in forecasting that we will be toasting the success of the 50th Freight Service Awards in 2038!”

To mark the special Silver Jubilee anniversary, a special programme was distributed at the event, commemorating the Awards’ 25 years and revealing every sponsor and winner’s name since the event started. A special retrospective audiovisual presentation, sponsored by American Airlines Cargo, looked at how the Awards and the Association had supported the industry over the last 25 years and was enjoyed by the luncheon guests.

Other ceremony sponsors, in addition to the category sponsors were: Delamode, DP World London Gateway, Impatex Freight Software, MCP, Port of Antwerp, Simpex Freight Management and Woodland Group.

Photo: Jubilant category winners surround Julia Bradbury as they celebrate their success.