Imperial partners with Turkish freight forwarder M Ekspres (MEX), to create a new multi-modal freight management business housed within Imperial’s freight management capability, specialising in traffic to, from and transiting Turkey.
The business will be based in Istanbul and will provide air and ocean import and export forwarding services to existing clients of both Imperial and MEX, as well as new customers. In addition, it plans to leverage the fast-growing range of global destinations served from Istanbul’s new airport, as a gateway for traffic to the African continent.
Says Imperial Logistics International CEO Hakan Bicil: “Imperial’s strategy involves establishing a global air and ocean freight management business based in Europe, to complement our logistics services offering, and maximise the potential of existing client and carrier relationships to generate revenue growth.”
Bicil goes on to say the partnership’s ambition is to become the chosen Gateway to Africa, “creating a competitive differentiator through technology and business model innovation”. To do this requires a global network connected to key world markets, he notes. The partners say they will leverage complementary strengths and tap the fact it is based in one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.
“Istanbul is also the best-connected airfreight gateway between the world and Africa – which means our new partnership is ideally located to link international business with Imperial’s unrivalled presence on the ground throughout major African markets, and our highly-developed market access solutions, unlocking some extremely exciting market opportunities,” Bicil says.
Adds MEX’s Oktay Baykut: “We are delighted to enter into this strategic partnership with Imperial, which brings together our own unparalleled local market knowledge and their blue-chip multi-national customer base and enormous strength in key African markets.”
MEX was established in 2009 as an international courier company by experienced Turkish forwarding executives Mehmet Baykut and Oktay Baykut, who had previously built the country’s second-largest IATA forwarder which was subsequently sold to Toll Global Forwarding.
Following the sale, Mehmet Baykut served as country managing director and Oktay Baykut served as director of Operations (and, later, sales) for Turkey. This was followed by the latter’s appointment as business development and sales director – Turkey for CEVA Logistics. After this, both returned to MEX and launched it to the market as a freight forwarder in 2019.
Imperial is mainly an African and Eurozone logistics provider of outsourced, integrated freight management, contract logistics and market access services. Listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and ranked among the top 30 global logistics providers, Imperial has established capabilities in transportation, warehousing, distribution and synchronisation management and expanding capabilities in international freight management. The group operates in specific industry verticals – automotive, chemicals, consumer, healthcare and industrial.
Imperial Logistics International is one of three divisions of Imperial, alongside the South Africa and African Regions divisions. Imperial Logistics International has its headquarters in Duisburg, Germany and is responsible for all the group logistics activities outside Africa.