Celebrating 30 years of international freight forwarding
Posted by Reid Malinbaum on Wed, Nov 20, 2013 @ 05:52 PM
ETC International Freight System a true story from our founder
Part # 1 The beginning
Although, I incorporated in 1984, my involvement in the international freight forwarding started when I immigrated to the USA from France in 1981. I was employed by Marshall Brownfield a freight forwarder that handled wearing apparel near the LAX. I was then 24 years old.
With my broken English, Marshall had me in the warehouse where I took upon myself to re-organize the incoming shipments of wearing apparels with receiving, manifesting, warehousing, inventory, in a nutshell the in & out. Luckily, my family background was in the textile manufacturing & I grew up in that environment working on & off for my father. This position did not last long, as Marshall & his French agent namely TTA, thought I would better be used in a sales capacity.
I was sent for training to New York for several weeks to work with the TTA office & came back with my new international freight forwarding skills. Working with the French importers in Los Angeles, obviously, was of no issue for me, I must say I did struggle with the all American customers importing from France. I can capsulate the feeling with one customer s remark: Call me back when you speak English”. I thought the sarcasm was well deserved, not that I felt at the time like laughing, but, from that point on-ward, I was committed to become articulate in English. Of course, over the years, there were other times, when I was corrected or made fun of mostly by my kids, but never, was the sting as vivid as the first time.
Several months after my employment, I was fired. We know the French have certain arrogance about them; you can add a good dose of spontaneity from my personality fueled by comments directed at Marshall (the owner). I acted as I was Captain America, when Marshall s exploded with anger at employees, which I felt was shockingly inappropriate above and beyond his company status. In his defense, I must admit that my lack of timing was enormous, as had I waited for a more inconspicuous place and time, adding more deference, I would surely have avoided what ensued. Marshall was a good man that gave me a job, a shelter and lent me his old Mercedes Benz from the 50s (gear shift next to the steering wheel). I repaid him with an un-timely remark and blew a piston on his Mercedes Benz, not knowing how to get to his 4th gear I did get my driver s license with that car, parallel parking on a hillside (Parisian trained driver), impressing the placid inspector. I am grateful to Mr. Marshall Brownfield & would apologize for the behavior should he be still standing. I had a few repeats of a similar nature that pursued me many times over in the years that followed.
2 years of struggle ensued. Out of a job, threaten by Marshall Brownfield to call the INS. I was doing menial jobs to earn a living, while learning the language and the many cultural differences seeking to assimilate. I will spare you the details, but, I may amuse you sharing a couple of them. Looking for jobs when you are so foreign and perhaps a bit strange for the main stream America forces you to get out of your comfort zone. So, I was in my life time a basic construction worker sent to retrieve various tools coming back with the wrong ones (lost in translation), for a punishment or their amusement, I was directed to work underneath the bottom of homes in Palos Verdes, using crawling spaces, seeking among dead rats, spiders, dirt and pipes the area to work on, discovering in the process what claustrophobia is like. A massive panic attack would surge, just about un-controllable, thinking, I was sent there to be buried alive, a magnified worse nightmare. For sure, my work there was incomplete.
To make ends meet, I was living in houses in Beverley Hills waiting to be sold or tear-down (I knew the listing agent), she was a caring listing agent. I was a home decorator for a short while, but, this did not pan out. I was not climbing the social ladder & left Los Angeles for some fresh air, living in Aspen in Colorado for a few months working as a busboy, a waiter, as well as being part of the work force on the slopes before the world ski cup started. This time in Aspen ended abruptly when I was asked by the judge that it would be best to leave the town. Yes, you guessed it; I had another Captain America episode. Here is the story: After being insulted up & down for returning a food platter from an un-satisfied patron & joining a waitress picking up a morsel off the returning platter (mea-culpa), the chef, which I recall was Middle Eastern, yelling insult at me, then got me fired for telling him how poor was the choice of words were. The injustice felt overwhelming and after I received my small severance check from an apologetic boss that hardly could argue my value against the value of a chef. My decision was made that there are lessons best learned by afflicting moderate pain and against the potential consequences. Going back to the kitchen, I pretended with the chef that the boss decided to keep me after all & got the chef away from his kitchen and his knives. Then, I proceeded by gently knocked the wind out of him, but, unfortunately, he landed on a table filled with clean dishes. The entire occupants of the restaurant running in to the fracas… I received a $ 70 fine for disturbing the peace & was suggested to consider leaving town. After leaving the courthouse, I had a small following, which at first worried me, but, as it turned out bought me a beer wanting to know the inside details. At some point, I did leave the town, the ski slopes and a ravishing young lady. Assimilation was rough, but well underway.
Back in Los Angeles, living with friends, I hit a wall going nowhere and running out of cash. Anxieties running high, afraid to fail, I remember speaking with my older brother, whom gave me a piece of his wisdom & it went like this; Since you want to stay & do not want to follow the family footsteps (textile industry) and had several months of experience in the freight business, why not look into it again .
This gave me the direction, I needed. I sold my motorcycle, bought myself a plane ticket back to France & interviewed with 32 French forwarders, which 2 of them were interested in opening an office in Los Angeles. The first one was Galax’ Air International that agreed to have me represent them independently. The second was SCAC, a French conglomerate that was strong in Africa. SCAC had a relationship with an agent Radix International & offered me to work for them inside Radix International in Los Angeles. I chose SCAC, being poor and not quite qualified to open my own freight forwarding company. This was 1982 / 83. Beyond sales, I was trained to administrate an office, which was extremely beneficial when I founded ETC International Freight System.
This was a very successful employment. I hired an assistant and we moved on Century Blvd into a luxury 1 office space with secretarial front desk. My parents visited me & were impressed with the outfit. I was a happy man & married my American wife, whom gave me instant stability and a razor sharp focus. At last, I was no longer working for myself, but, for us and our children to be. But, life keeps throwing twists here and there. SCAC was happy with the success of this satellite office and wanted more. They sent a company name to re-structure a bigger office & I found myself suddenly confounded in sales with a new boss from Switzerland that used words like his people, in a context that reminding me of the old nobility addressing the serfs. By then, I had learned enough of the American way, coupled with a strong independent nature. I left SCAC & in a hurry, opening my company, next door having a few customers dedicated & the owner of Galax Air, Mr. Francois Dusseque with whom, I kept close contact. Francois Dusseque had trust in me & gave me advance on commission for the traffics to be, which helped me establishing my first few months in business. In addition, my relationship with my bank was great & since SCAC before opening their larger office was using an account under my name (the good old days once upon the West ). I had credit, and, let us remember that in 1984 under the Reagan era, the import was booming with a strong dollar over the Franc currency (before the Euro). And so, my little firm had the incredible advantage to receive the customers payments here and repay the agents (European) so fast that they were experiencing something no other freight forwarders (agents) ever offered; fast return (15 days or less repayment) on their invoices. It was the inception of P Malinbaum Company DBA Euro Transport Connections & later on DBA ETC International Freight System. What happens next is to me fantastic.
Part 2. Beyond the pathway that led me to freight forwarding over 33 years ago with the incorporation of what became ETC International Freight System in the summer of 1984.
SALEM -The ongoing battle over whether an Island City homeowner can operate a trucking company on his residential property continued in the Oregon Court of Appeals Wednesday.
The appellate court judges heard only from La Grande-based attorney Phil Wasley, who argued on behalf of the Stevenses, the neighbors who hope to stop the trucking operation. Neither Island City, which issued the home occupation permit, nor Jon Fregulia, who operates the trucking company, were represented at the hearing.
Wasley told the appellate judges that Fregulia s business, Oregon Trail Transport, violated the Island City s development code. No reasonable person could consider the trucking company a secondary use of the property, with the residential being the primary use, a term of the permit, Wasley argued.
At least one of the appellate court judges appeared to agree.
Judge Rex Armstrong spoke about the magnitude of operating a trucking business.
Running a trucking operation, given what that normally looks like and what that normally entails, at a residence, I struggle, frankly, that it could really be defined as secondary to the residential use, given everything required to make that operation effective, Armstrong said.
See more in Friday’s edition of The Observer.
DriveCam s system uses a window-mounted recording device that captures forward and cab-facing video.
Some large U.S. carriers have began implementing a new method in eliminating accidents and absolving themselves and their drivers of fault in accidents that do occur: Video cameras that film the driver and the road while recording time and place on a map using GPS.
As noted previously in an Overdrive Extra blog post from earlier this year,3 fleets have already used the technologies to set the record straight when sued for an accident that was not the fault of their driver.
These driver risk management systems, as their called, take the form of a continuously recording cameras that feature a cab-facing camera and a forward-facing one. As Huff notes, not all of the footage is sent to the truck s carrier, but when a risky event occurs, like a quick lane change, sudden acceleration or deceleration or running a stop sign, short clips are sent to headquarters, showing what happened before, during and after the event.
Huff s story also covers driver acceptance geared toward fleet managers of the cameras, as they are obviously generally perceived as invasions of privacy.
Last December, Overdrive reported on the news that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration OK d the use of the in-cab cameras, which led to an ample amount of OD reader response, including one driver saying he d drive naked as a means to give his carrier something to look at, along with other drivers chiming in on their take on in-cab cameras. Click here to see that story.456
This video from SmartDrive shows what carriers get when the clips are sent and shows a driver having to come to a quick stop to avoid a collision:
- ^ Aaron Huff has an extended story (www.ccjdigital.com)
- ^ Click here to see it (www.ccjdigital.com)
- ^ Overdrive Extra blog post from earlier this year, (www.overdriveonline.com)
- ^ OK d the use of the in-cab cameras (www.overdriveonline.com)
- ^ OD reader response, including one driver saying (www.overdriveonline.com)
- ^ Click here to see that story. (www.overdriveonline.com)
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You Want To Start Your Own Import Export Business
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Hello, I m Lance Scoular.
For over 35 years I have been quietly making vast sums of money with my own Import Export Businesses and for the last 10 years I have been teaching people how to make big money as import export business owners. I use a series of methods that are so simple, you can literally put them to use as soon as you learn them.
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In fact, it is one of the few businesses where you can start with nothing and build it to the point where you have a very profitable, hands-off business that makes you hundreds of thousands of dollars a year.
One of the great things I love about International Trade is that you can do it from anywhere in the world. You choose the products you want to work with. If you ve got some interest (a hobby) in certain products or niches, then that s generally a great place to start. Why? Because you already have some knowledge of the product, so you ll be interested and jazzed up about working with it!
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As Your Own Boss You Call AllThe Shots
This means that you decide when you work and when you play!
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If you decide you want to live in another part of the world for longer than just a vacation, then you can do it! Just set up your small office (basically a phone and a computer) and you are good to go.
You see, once you ve learnt the basics of the Import Business or Export Business, you ll be able to do it from anywhere in the world. And the skills you learn you ll have and use forever.
That s a critical difference between going back to school to further your education for your job (J.O. B. means just over broke! ) and working for yourself! Learning more for your job is always going to help your boss more than it will help you.
STOP working so hard making money for your boss who doesn t care about you!
With Your Import Export Business You ll Never Again Fear Being Downsized
Importing and exporting is never going to stop as the world marketplace will always continue to trade. It s always made money for the people that have known how to use it You can now be one of these people who know the secrets of world trade. In fact, now is actually better than ever as there is a critical shortage of experienced import export agents right now!
Even in these tough economic times, most businesses do not have their own import or export agents and wish they did!
All you need is the right training so you can take advantage of this in-demand position that is staring you in the face.
New Trade agreements between China, India, South America and hundreds of countries around the world means that there are billions of dollars of product moving each month between these countries. So what you re probably wondering now is how do YOU get a piece of that action?
If you really want to know how start an import business or an export business then put your name and email address in the box above and get a copy of our free report that will give you a clear picture of what this is all about. After you read this report you will know if this business if right for you.
Should I Choose a Product First or Find a Market That Interests Me First ?
If you already have a product in mind then you are in the right place.
I can help you with your marketing needs. Once you sign up to be coached by me I can help you research and verify your product s viability. We ll discuss if the product is likely to make you money before you go investing any time in your project. This is one of the biggest mistakes new people make when they get started.
They first choose the product before doing research on the amount of demand in the marketplace. (By doing this new agents are putting the cart before the horse.)
It just makes common sense to make sure that your product is in demand, and can be sourced at a good price that will make you the most profit. I m sure you ll agree with that. The sticky part is having the insider information to knowing if a product is profitable to market or not. And how to get that product sourced, or produced, moved and sold.
I m going to show you how to evaluate the market for your product and make sure that you always pick winners. Plus I ll share my insider trading secrets with my sources and contacts in the countries you want to do business with.
If you don t have a product in mind, we can work together to find one.
I will show you how to do thorough market analysis and research, how to identify an in-demand product with a high enough margin so you can make good money on it. I ll coach you to make sure your product is not a competitor saturated product market . We ll go over everything you need to know to get it from the manufacturer to the consumer.
It just doesn t get any simpler than that!
Can I Work With Local Manufacturers Who Don t Export?
This is your golden opportunity because most local manufactures haven t tapped into the export market.
You are probably thinking why haven t they ?
First, the reality is most local manufacturers don t know where to start. And second, they are just so busy running their business that it really hasn t even been a consideration. Can you see where there is a big hole in their thinking?
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All it takes is some of your spare time to be trained to do it.
As an Import Export Agent all the financial transactions are paid for by the manufacturer. The Freight chargers, Freight Forwarders, Insurances, Customs and even your marketing to find trade leads can be paid for by the manufacturer. You take NO RISK. But you get to profit from every transaction now and into the future!
So why is there so much money in this industry?
One of the reasons there is so much profit in the import export business is because the profit margins are so huge.
Think of it this way When you buy a product for 30 cents and sell it for $2.00 you can see how these incredibly high profit margins can make you very rich, very quickly.
Here s an example:
Do you know how much it costs for Nike to make a running shoe .. Less than $10.00 total cost, and how much do they sell them for .. $120-$200. That s where the real money is. Now are you ready to find out more? You bet you are!
As an import export agent you make a significant amount of money, with no risk, and easily can get started in your spare time!
Now do you see why importers and exporters make BIG MONEY?
The fact is, they have such big margins to work with that they can afford to make a few mistakes every now and then and still make lots of money.
You can get started, with little financial investment and just your spare time. Over 400 people just like you, have been coached by me to quickly and confidently start their own import export business. Many are financially free!
If I m Ready to Get Started Building My Import Export BusinessWhat Do I Really Need To Get Started?
You can get started today, with just an Internet Connection that s really all you need.
In the past I would have said a telephone and a fax but now with Skype and virtual fax machines you can do everything through the internet. With Skype and a laptop your office can be anywhere you choose!
So Do I Really Need a Coach and Trainer to Help Me Get Started?
You could try to work it all out yourself, but that would be a very expensive and timely process. I m sure you don t have the time or money to waste playing the game of trial and error. Not when I m here ready to teach you the shortcuts to your freedom.
I ll show you exactly what you need to do so you can put all the pieces together quickly. That way you can start making money in the fastest possible way. Without a coach you could be struggling for years trying to work this out. What would you prefer to have 3 months from now? A business that is making money or a business that is still trying to work out which way is up?
Do I Really Need Your Free Report about making money in the import export business?
I want to begin teaching you as soon as you are ready to get started and I want to send you, absolutely FREE, my concise report on How to Get Started With Your Own Import Export Business. Just put your name in the form at the top right of this page and I ll send it straight to you.
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- You don t need an expensive college education and why that is probably a disadvantage in this business.
- This is the perfect time to get started in the import export business
You May Be Surprised By What You Learn in This Report as My Methods are Simple Yet So Effective
I ll reveal to you my insider secrets gleaned from over 35 years experience in the import export business experience! As they say Nothing Takes the Place Of Experience
Once you decide you want to be an import export agent we ll then move on to some of the other things you will need to learn. Remember that I will be with you every step of the way as you build you knowledge and skill base to be a successful Importer or Exporter.
Some of The Other Things You Will Need to Learn Are
- How to find and negotiate deals using other people s money (not your own!)
- How to find the right in demand and high profit margin products
- How to choose the most cost effective freight methods for your product
- What are the Incoterms 2010 and how to write them into your contract
- How to find top quality suppliers that are reliable and honest
- How to protect yourself against any unforeseen events
- How to build a client base that will stay loyal for years to come
- How to keep all your profits . Tax Free
This is your chance to gain all the import export business building knowledge you need. With my coaching you can easily avoid the costly mistakes and errors that other new import export agents and business owners make.
You ll love the freedom of working for yourself and doing what you want, when you want.
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When you work with me I ll help you walk down the road to financial success!
So just sign up for the free report and let s get started building your own Import Export Business Today!
I m looking forward to helping you get started
Dedicated To Your Import Export Business Success
P. S. Remember, owning your own successful import export business will give you the freedom of being your own boss and allow you to live the lifestyle you truly deserve. And you can do it with little or no cash as the only investment is your free time.
P. P. S. I m for a limited time offering my personal support and mentoring, so you ll get all the help and coaching you need on your path to success.
P. P. P. S. Remember to collect your free offer on this page on, How to Get Started With Your Own Import Export Business as it will open your eyes to a new world of possibility.
Brad Chapdelaine, 2012 Owner-Operator of the Year, was featured on the cover of the May 2013 Overdrive.
Many truck drivers operate safely, give to their communities and work to enhance the image of trucking. Now is the time nominate such drivers for the 2013 Driver of the Year Competition, run by the Truckload Carriers Association and Overdrive.
Three finalists for Owner-Operator of the Year and Company Driver of the Year will be announced in December. The six finalists will attend TCA s annual meeting, March 23-26, near Dallas, where the winners will be announced.
All nominees must have at least one million consecutive, accident-free miles. Company drivers must be nominated by the carrier that employs them. Owner-operators may be nominated by a carrier they have been leased to for three or more years, or if independent they can nominate themselves or be nominated by a spouse.
Nominations will be accepted until Oct. 21.
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Location: Eastern CapePublish Date: 14-08-2013Expiry Date: 2013-08-16Description:
Job Title: Clearing & Forwarding Import/ Export ControllerREF: GSAA/LN/Clearing & Forwarding Import/ Export Controller/Eastern Cape/080813
Recruiter: Grindrod Limited
AA/EE: Not Applicable Contract PermanentLocation: Eastern Cape Available: ASAPCategory: Freight / Shipping / Transport / Import / Export Basic salary range: Market RelatedReporting To: Regional Manager Department: Division: Grindrod Ships Agencies (Pty) Ltd Africa Positions: 1IntroductionA new and challenging position has become available for a dynamic and customer-focused individual to join our Clearing & Forwarding Department in Port Elizabeth.Minimum RequirementsWe invite applications from candidates who meet the following minimum criteria
Relevant industry-related training and / or a relevant course in the maritime field
Minimum of 3 years practical experience in the Freight Forwarding industry with emphasis on sea freight imports and exportsExperience in quality complianceKnowledge of customs entries an added advantageSound knowledge of Incoterms and the various shipping modes
Job SpecificationReporting to the Eastern Cape Regional Manager the successful applicant will be responsible for:
Following through on the full shipment process timeously & accurately, from receipt of documents until final delivery of cargo and invoiceKeeping clients and agents updated and informed during the whole processRequesting clearing instructions, original documents, registering, reconciling & recovering third party charges, redirecting if necessary, invoicing, splitting files & all other actions required for successful delivery to clientsDealing with Customers/Service Providers/Customs & Excise/NPA/Port Health/Dep. of Agriculture/State Vet/Container Depots/Chamber of Commerce/ITACSound Seafreight and Clearing and Forwarding import/export knowledgeEffectively deal with queriesDealing with basic accounting processes such as debtors, creditors and invoicingEnsuring quality compliance in ISO 9001, and working within the framework of ISO requirements
Ability to identify and execute on the needs and requirements of the clients, agents, shipping lines nvocc s and other service providersAbility to deal effectively with client queries and escalate queries and complaintsDisplaying a passion for quality service to clients and agentsAble to work accurately with strong attention to detailWorks according to standard operating proceduresStrong communication skillsStrong numeric abilityExcellent organisational and administration skillsComputer literacy MS Word, MS Excel, Microsoft OutlookAble to work as part of a team
How to Apply:Applicants to send their CV s to the HR Department for attention Siya on e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Please state the name of the position as a reference on your application
Due consideration will be given to the company s equity targets.
Please note that the position has been opened to internal and external candidates.