Freight forwarder DAMCO relied on its business resilience (BR) programme to restart its Lebanon operations within 24 hours after the devastating blast at the Port of Beirut, the company said in a release.
“The immediate concern was ‘what is the status of the team members? Are you safe?’,” said Zera Zheng, Head of DAMCO Business Resilience and Security.
Thanks to communication channels put in place as part of the its business continuity plan, staff at the freight forwarder’s headquarters in The Hague were able to rapidly assess the safety and welfare of the Beirut-based team.
Earlier this year, a new Instant Message feature was integrated onto its BR App for more efficient communications between local and global offices.
Despite the office suffering serious damage, DAMCO’s Beirut team escaped the blast with only minor injuries and relocated all office functions to its nearby warehouse facility in Dekwaneh, with support from the global team working with the BR programme.
DAMCO said it has invested in, and developed, the programme over the last two years to prepare its global staff for any supply chain disruptions.
“The recent regrettable events in Lebanon have shown the importance of having a solid, viable, and tested BR Program,” said Nabil Zahlan, Managing Director of DAMCO Lebanon.
“Our thoughts are with all of those who have suffered as a result of this terrible accident,” Saskia Groen-in’t–Woud, DAMCO’s CEO, expressed in a statement.
“We are incredibly proud of our team in Beirut for tenaciously keeping our customer’s supply chains moving and of our BR Program, which meant that we were prepared and could work quickly to support our colleagues in real time,” she added.
“Through communication and transparency via the BR App, we have continued strong relationships with our staff and customers by providing continuous updates on the situation, cargo, and alternative options for individual needs,” noted Zheng.
DAMCO’s BR Team has been working throughout the Covid-19 crisis to maintain global supply chains after successfully managing 94 disruptive events globally in 2019.