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“We see ourselves as our customers’ logistics department”

15 May 20248 min reading

“Esna International Freight Forwarding is particularly one of the leading companies in transporting flour and pasta. Today, 45% of our transportation with all of our fleets consists of flour and pasta loads. We continue regular freight transport to many countries. We organize shipments with regular services from all ports in Turkey. We take pride in helping many of our customers who start exporting through our channel from scratch to eventually achieve significant volumes in foreign sales. We see ourselves as the logistics department of our customers and do our best to support their sales, and we will continue to do so.”

The crisis in maritime transportation, which began with COVID-19, continued with the war between Russia and Ukraine, and reached its peak with Israel’s occupation turning into genocide in Gaza, is adversely affecting many sectors. Problems such as container shortages, port congestion, and increases in transportation costs are leading to price hikes, harming national economies.

We spoke with Naci Tacikayan, Managing Partner of Esna International Freight Forwarding, about the developments in the sector. Tacikayan noted that maritime transportation, where a significant portion of world trade takes place, is prolonging transit times and increasing costs due to the inability of ships to use this passage and having to circumnavigate via the Cape of Good Hope, especially due to the issues in the Suez Canal. Tacikayan expressed that the importance of maritime transportation is increasing day by day and will continue to do so. He hopes that the crisis in the Suez Canal, which began due to the chaotic situation caused by the genocide in Gaza, will be resolved soon and the canal will be reopened for traffic.

Naci Tacikayan

Below are the responses provided by Mr. Naci Tacikayan to our questions.

Dear Mr. Tacikayan, thank you for taking the time to accept our interview request. Could you provide us with information about Esna International Freight Forwarding, which has been operating in Turkey for about 15 years?

Esna International Freight Forwarding has been a boutique service-oriented company in international transportation since 2009. We continue to provide services with our Istanbul Central office and our branch office in Tekirdağ province. In addition, we continue our journey with an increasing variety of services, including our project cargo department and customs clearance department. Our business is not just the typical freight sales that many similar companies offer; instead, we aim to provide fast and creative solutions to meet all of our customers’ logistics needs. This approach has made us one of the top choices in the transportation sector. 

In addition to maritime transportation, Esna has significant services in air, railway, and road transportation. What advantages does working in such a broad network provide you? Also, what does this situation bring to your customers?

We support our customers in selling goods to new destinations by providing them with all transportation services from a single source, thereby offering them advantages in both time and cost. This allows them to focus solely on the sales and export aspect of their business. Providing services in so many areas also enables us to reach companies exporting in every mode of transportation.

Could you share with us the importance of maritime transportation in the food sector, especially in a world economy that has become a global market where shipping and transportation continue to grow and become increasingly important?

As you mentioned, maritime transportation is indeed the backbone of world trade. Over 90% of the volume and over 70% of the value of world trade are organized by maritime transportation. Therefore, new ships and containers are entering circulation every day, and new investments are being made. We believe that maritime transportation will continue to maintain its strategic position as the most important mode of transportation in the future.

Due to the increased risks in maritime transportation caused by the war between Russia and Ukraine and Israel’s attacks on Gaza, costs have risen and transportation times have lengthened. Especially events in the Red Sea and the Black Sea have affected your industry.

Of course, as a sector that conducts a significant portion of global trade, it has been adversely affected. Especially due to the issue in the Suez Canal, ships have to navigate around the Cape of Good Hope because they cannot use this passage. This has made transit times and container supply more difficult, consequently increasing costs. Due to the extended transportation times, exporters also find it harder to collect their receivables as materials arrive late. We hope that this issue will be resolved as soon as possible, and the canal will reopen for traffic. The crisis in the Suez Canal, which started due to the chaotic situation caused by the genocide in Gaza, has had a greater impact on maritime trade than other factors you have mentioned.

Could you tell us about your goals in the field of maritime transportation?

Our biggest goal in this field is to elevate our customers who choose us to a step ahead of their competitors in the market with our boutique service of minimum cost and maximum quality. To achieve this, we work 24/7 to maximize our dominance in the market and share this effort with our customers.

Why is sea transportation preferred? What services do you offer in maritime transportation as Esna?

Sea transportation is much more cost-effective and offers a wider variety of destinations compared to road, rail, and air transportation. Consequently, exporters can reach more countries and more buyers, allowing them to make more sales.

Esna International Freight Forwarding, as one of Turkey’s largest maritime transportation companies, serves the industry. We are among the leading companies in both container and bulk cargo transportation. It is a great pride for us to transport export cargo in containers to 106 countries today. We have a presence on every continent and in every country. We will continue to increase the variety of our services to our customers, both in container and bulk cargo transportation.

Could you talk about the importance of Esna in the international journey of dry foods such as flour, pasta, bulgur, and biscuits, considering that Turkey is one of the world’s leading exporters in these areas, exporting to over 160 countries?

I would like to thank you for this question because Esna International Freight Forwarding is particularly one of the leading companies in transporting flour and pasta. Today, 45% of our transportation with all of our fleets consists of flour and pasta loads. We continue regular freight transport to many countries. We organize shipments with regular services from all ports in Turkey. We take pride in helping many of our customers who start exporting through our channel from scratch to eventually achieve significant volumes in foreign sales. We see ourselves as the logistics department of our customers and do our best to support their sales, and we will continue to do so.

Could you explain your slogan “We safely transport all kinds of food products that set off with Esna to their destination port with confidence” for us?

We don’t just consider our job done once the loading is completed. We track every stage of our customer’s cargo and keep them informed continuously. Additionally, with the investments we’ve made on the web side, we’ve established the ‘Esna Web System’ Artificial Intelligence Platform to simplify our customers’ work. Customers can track all their cargo using the application they download to their phones. We regularly inform them via email about the status of their cargo, whether it’s on its way, arrived, picked up, or not picked up yet, allowing them to track it from their end as well. In the event of any issues, we track the entire process on behalf of our customers and come up with solutions. Customers working with Esna International Freight Forwarding never feel alone throughout the entire loading process.

What is your role in the Turkish food sector’s expansion into the global market to this extent?

Of course, we constantly provide our customers with information about current markets and, with our freight support, enable them to sell their goods to more destinations. Customers who work with us can sell their products to many countries and customers with peace of mind, feeling safe and secure. I can say this with honesty: having a reliable logistics partner in world trade is a great advantage for exports. We do our best to make our customers feel this way.

Food waste is one of the most pressing global issues. Especially during a time when production conditions and costs are very challenging, what do you pay attention to when transporting food?

We are well aware of how valuable each food product is for humanity. Therefore, we prioritize our shipments with the carrier and aim for them to arrive at the final port within estimated times without experiencing unusual delays at transshipment ports. We continuously monitor this process because long transit times for food products can lead to spoilage. Due to our commitment to providing clean and undamaged containers and our sensitivity regarding transit times, we minimize the potential issues our customers may face.

What would you like to say to companies that export or are exporting for the first time?

I’d like to say this with honesty: If you want peace of mind, working with Esna International Freight Forwarding will be sufficient.

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15 May 20248 min reading

“We see ourselves as our customers’ logistics department”

“Esna International Freight Forwarding is particularly one of the leading companies in transporting flour and pasta. ”