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The independent voice of the global moving industry


Standing up to the challenge

Samer Darwish, founder of Darwish Logistics Syria & DXI Logistics UAE has had more than his fair share of setbacks during 40 years in the logistics and removals industries. Here he tells the story of how despite working in one of the world’s most volatile regions he has built two of the most successful transport companies in the Middle East. 


Closing the gender gap for international assignments

Women in business across the world are being urged to ‘go global’ to help close the gender gap for expat workers.

Tony Allen: And finally …

Things ain’t what they used to be!

Walking with Zac

An interview with Tony Allen, by Steve Jordan

The mystery of success

A visit to Movecorp, one of the industry’s thriving upstarts, by Steve Jordan

FEDEMAC Summit to be held in Riga

The first ever annual summit meeting held by FEDEMAC will take place in Riga, Latvia on 18 September, 2015. The Summit will discuss the issues faced by the European moving industry as a result of legislation emanating from the European Union.

Bigger better Panama Canal by 2016

Bigger ships will be taking advantage of a bigger Panama Canal when the expansion work is completed next year.

Standing up to the challenge

Samer Darwish, founder of Darwish Logistics Syria & DXI Logistics UAE has had more than his fair share of setbacks during 40 years in the Logistics and Removals industries. Here he tells the story of how despite working in one of the world’s most volatile regions he has built two of the most successful transport companies in the Middle East.



Tougher limits for diesel emissions following Supreme Court ruling

The UK Supreme Court has quashed the government’s ineffective plans to cut illegal levels of air pollution in Britain and ordered it to deliver new proposals by the end of 2015.

Jim Petzel joins UniGroup

Jim Petzel, previously president of global services for Graebel, has joined UniGroup relocation as the company’s chief operating officer (COO). 

Graebel promotes three

Graebel Relocation, has announced the promotion of Michelle Mara CRP, GMS, Nancy Lempicki GMS and Samantha Hodges CRP, GMS, to vice presidents of client development.

Tracing traffic offenders across borders

On 11 February, the European Parliament approved new data-sharing rules that will provide cross-border information on traffic offenders.

Timo Heck takes on immigration for Crown in DACH

Crown World Mobility has announced Timo Heck as its immigration manager for Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH). He will be based in Crown’s Zurich office.

Global hires relo specialist

Global International Relocation, OMNI member in Portugal has announced the appointment of Luísa Piló as its new global relocation immigration manager.

Mario Amato joins Whites

Mario Amato has joined White and Company as the company’s group European business development manager.

New Corporate Manager at Britannia Movers International

Britannia Movers International has announced the appointment of Julie Knapton as corporate manager based at its head office in Croydon.

New safety system for oversized loads at Dartford Crossing

The Highways Agency is to introduce a new safety system at the Dartford Tunnel for oversized vehicles. The system aims to minimise delays by directing them into a separate lane where they will be met by an escort.

New branch for Global in Lisbon

Global International Relocation from Portugal has announced the opening of a new branch in Lisbon.

Groves is first in Kent to BS EN 14873

D C Groves & Son from Tenterden in Kent has recently achieved the BS EN 14873 Standard for the storage of household and personal effects.


Congratulations to Marian Elbro from Luker Bros who correctly spotted Philippa Robinson last month.  Philippa is still attending conferences and hardly looks a day older. This time can you identify the rather puzzled young man in the middle? E-mail you answer to

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Editor's Blog

  • Sad losses

    Apr 16, 2015

    I usually try to keep this column fairly up-beat but it’s not easy this month having just heard of the death of Roy Church, who we featured in our December issue; and dear Ted Philp, only a few months after he lost his wife, Doreen.  The UK moving industry has been blessed by these two statesmen, and we should all feel privileged to have known then and be thankful for all they did: but it’s hard to see them go. Their obituaries will be in the May issue.

    I didn’t really know Roy, but I visited him at his home in St. Ives just before Christmas to conduct the interview.  He immediately made me feel at home and treated me as if we had been friends for ever.  Indeed, via some of our joint friends, I suppose we had.  He was very ill, but never complained and was as jolly and sharp as I am sure he had always been.  He insisted on paying for lunch in the local pub.  A few days later I received a card, which still sits on my office window ledge.  It is hand made and features a picture of spring flowers from Roy’s garden. It said how much he had enjoyed the visit and invited me to drop in any time I was in the area.  I never got the chance.

    Ted, I knew much better.  I had worked with him for many years, most closely when we were both part of the BAR’s freight negotiation team, the forerunner of the MTC.  He was gentle, diligent, courteous, hard when he had to be, and a mine of knowledge that the industry has now lost forever. He had a profound influence on me.  In the 1980s, I made my inaugural speech at a BAR conference.  I was probably voicing my naïve opinion about shipping. As I stepped down from the stage, Ted walked towards me. I was convinced I was going to be slapped down for my youthful insolence.  Instead he shook my hand and asked my advice.  Extraordinary!  Despite being the undisputed king of shipping in the UK that time he still had the wisdom to know that he might be able to learn something, even from me, and had the grace to make me feel good after a terrifying public speaking ordeal. 

    That helped me realise the power of public performance. Stand on a stage and you become the industry expert.  I have enthusiastically encouraged others to do the same ever since.  Thanks Ted.


  • Little things make a difference

    Mar 16, 2015

    I have just come back from my niece’s wedding.  I have been to a few weddings in the past and, of course, they are all fairly jolly occasions.  But, with the exception of my own and the weddings of my children, this one was by far the most memorable.  Why?  Because it was different.

    Most of the weddings I have been to in the past have been nice, but predictable.  This was predictable too: they looked wonderful, grandma cried, they signed the register, had a belting party and will, I trust, live happily ever after.  But this was different because of just a few little touches that were hardly noticeable to many: the organist in the church playing Ed Sheeran; dancing up the aisle to rock music after signing the register; photos of their mum and dad’s weddings at the reception; packets of mints spread around to help with the post breakfast indigestion; the bride changing into her pyjamas (not a going-away-outfit) after midnight to join the throng in the hotel bar.

    None of this was revolutionary.  It has probably all been done before. But it just goes to show how little you have to do to make a big difference when people think they know what to expect.  People often say to me that it’s hard to be different in the moving industry because everyone does the same thing.  That seems to me to be an opportunity.  Just by doing something unexpected (as long as it’s a good thing) can make you exceptional.  It doesn’t need to cost anything.  That’s not what it’s about.

    I went to a FIDI meeting last year at which this very thing was being discussed.  The presenter asked the attendees to look at every customer-facing aspect of their business to see if it was possible to include something exceptional: at the enquiry, if the customer came to visit, when the crew first arrived, etc. One company made a point of cleaning customers’ cars for them while they were in the office.  Not hard, not costly, but very memorable.

    So what could you do differently today?  Business is pretty good for most movers nowadays, certainly by comparison to the recent past.  Everyone should be able to do OK.  But how are you going to do better than OK?  How will you get more than your fair share of the good times? It might be a lot easier than you think.         


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