Canadian wins global young forwarder award

by Inside Logistics Online Staff
Anastasia Gureeva (LinkedIn photo)

GENEVA & LONDON – A Canadian has won a Young International Freight Forwarder of the Year Award (YIFFYA) for 2020. Anastasia Gureeva, is an ocean import coordinator with Traffic Tech in Toronto is one of four regional winners from around the world.

For over 20 years, the award has been providing valuable training opportunities for young talent in the freight forwarding industry. It is presented by FIATA International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations and international freight transport insurer, TT Club.

Gureeva entered the competition to challenge herself in dealing with “transportation problems where you cannot apply standard logistics solutions, but have to think out of box. I entered the competition because it is something that interests me and helps me gain knowledge at the same time,” she said in an email with Inside Logistics.

“It is an import milestone in my career. It proves certain level of experience and professionalism I have achieved so far in my freight forwarding journey,” she added.

“At the same time it showed me the areas which are yet to be discovered and developed such as project logistics.”

Project logistics is the subject she addressed in two theses she presented for the competition. She tracked two project moves with the titles “Smile Through Every Challenge” and “Getting off the beaten track”.

The first addressed a client proposal to move fire hydrants from Edmonton to Algeria in 20 days. She assessed the fastest way to accomplish the move as time was the client’s main concern. Ultimately she determined that trucking to Houston and flying from there less expensive than flying direct from Edmonton airport, although slower. As a result, an air charter from Edmonton was proposed.

The second project was a proposal to help GE Capital move three locomotives from the Port of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to their plant in London, Ontario. The challenge was getting the engines from the port of Houston to London, since they cannot travel on North American track due a gauge difference. Her solution: load the locomotives on flatbeds by rail with the bogies removed.

Traditionally, the four regional winners would present their dissertations to the Award Steering Committee at the FIATA World Congress, with final judging and the announcement of the global winner taking place during the event. Travel restrictions being as they are, there will be no congress held this year, so the judging will be completed remotely, with the regional winners’ entries being presented via videocall in October 2020.

Representing their respective companies and national associations, candidates submitted their dissertations earlier in the year, focused on demonstrating their expertise in freight forwarding. The dissertations sought to illustrate complex multimodal shipments of cargoes such as large crane assemblies, locomotives, halal meat and rainbow trout eggs. Many of the candidates this year were able to further demonstrate their expertise through inclusion of COVID-19 challenges, explaining how these were overcome.

TT Club recognizes the importance of encouraging new talent in the freight forwarding business and has supported the competition with its sponsorship throughout the 20 years of the award’s history.

Mike Yarwood, TT Club’s managing director, loss prevention and the chair of the award steering committee, commented: “The awards continue to celebrate the achievements of young forwarders and both the Club and FIATA recognize the high standards of professionalism in our industry that must be exhibited in the most challenging of times. Throughout the current crisis – and for some time into the future – forwarders will be critical to the maintenance of an efficient and effective global supply chain.”

This year’s regional winners are:

  • Region Europe: Femke Marie Fürst (DSLV – Germany)
  • Region Africa and Middle East: Vimbai Loreen Manyumbu (SFAAZ – Zimbabwe)
  • Region Americas: Anastasia Gureeva (CIFFA – Canada)
  • Region Asia Pacific: Umair Aamir Sheikh (PIFFA – Pakistan)

FIATA president Basil Pietersen added his congratulations to the four winners, “Our award aims to contribute to the development of quality professionals and reward young talent. The entries this year were, as ever, of a high standard and drew from a wide range of dissertation topics. I am heartened by the exceptional work of all the entrants, which demonstrates the complexity of processes carried out within the global supply chain and the logistics skills required to serve it. In addition, they underline the need of forwarders worldwide to adapt quickly to regulatory, political and economic pressures.”