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“It’s always win–win to invest in human resources.”: Mehdi Lamrani Karim

“It’s always win–win to invest in human resources.”: Mehdi Lamrani Karim

Like many young boys, Mehdi Lamrani Karim loved miniature trucks. “My father gave me many of them and I spent my childhood playing with them,” he recalls. Unlike most boys, however, he also had unlimited access to the life-size versions of his favourite vehicles – his family owns Marotrans, a transportation and logistics company based in Casablanca, Morocco.

Mehdi Lamrani Karim, CEO of Marotrans

Today, the company is nothing like the one of Mehdi’s childhood. “It started with just two trucks. Now, we have 130 vehicles and 350 employees,” he says with pride. “It’s a great honour to continue my dad’s life’s work. This company is more than just a business to me.”

Nevertheless, there were times when Mehdi’s passion was tested. He admits that being a young CEO who is keen to constantly bring new ideas to the table comes with its challenges.

“It is not easy to convince people who have been working in the same way for more than 10 years to change their methods,” he explains. There are many senior staff members who are older than him and have worked at the company since his father founded it.

But Mehdi has realised that by using a respectful approach, he can overcome any situation with grace. “I believe listening is very important,” he reveals.

“When I first joined the company, I didn’t jump right in with my ideas. I spent a lot of time listening to people, learning from their experiences, especially the ones who had been working in Marotrans for a long time. I don’t like to make unilateral decisions.”

In many instances, Mehdi’s instincts have been proven correct. One such example is the company’s successful expansion into the city of Tangier in northern Morocco.

“I noticed that the city had become the centre for many investments from international companies. It was going through an economic boom. I wanted to make a quick decision to support the development of the automotive industry by handling the transport of car parts from the automotive suppliers to car manufacturers before anyone else did, in order to enjoy first mover advantage with our partners such as PSA and Eurostyle Systems. But the top management team had reservations,” he says.

“The younger team members tend to be very eager to take on diversification and development strategies while the older generation is always more careful. But at the end of the day, I think it is healthy for the company to have this intergenerational dynamic.”

Over the course of the 34 years of its establishment, Marotrans has built up an impressive portfolio of business partnerships, working with household names such as McDonald’s, Unilever and Nestlé.

When we think of our partners as part of the company and not an external party, it allows for the exchange to be more fluid and problems to be fixed more easily.

“We take care of everything to do with logistics, from transport and storage to transit and distribution,” Mehdi explains. He also identifies trust as a crucial factor in cultivating long-term relationships with clients.

“When we work with a big client such as McDonald’s, we usually receive a set of clearly defined KPIs so that we know exactly what is expected of us. This facilitates effective communication, which is very important,” Mehdi asserts.

“We have also recently been in talks with Nestlé about meeting at least once a month to discuss issues that can crop up while doing business. It’s paramount to be completely transparent with each other. When we think of our partners as part of the company and not an external party, it allows exchanges to be more fluid and problems to be fixed more easily.”

It’s not just the company’s business partners who get to enjoy such stellar treatment. Mehdi is adamant about extending the same to his employees. “We just signed a collective agreement that aims to improve the working conditions and living standards of our truck drivers,” he reveals.

“I think it’s important to remind our country, our government and other courageous businesses to join us in taking this step. “We believe that the more you invest in improving the working conditions of your employees, the more secure your labour force will be, and the more you will be able to use it as a competitive advantage in the marketplace. It’s always win–win to invest in human resources.”

Top Road Transport Manager 2015 – IRU award

The prestigious IRU Award for Top Road Transport Managers is attributed to the top managers of road transport companies engaged in the national or international transport of goods or passengers by road, including taxi companies, who have done honour to their profession through their wide professional experience and specific managerial achievements.

• According to the provisions of the present IRU Regulation, this IRU international distinction of prestige is attributed, in the form of an IRU diploma, lapel pin and award logo entitled “Road Transport Top Manager”, to the top managers of road transport companies engaged in the national or international transport of goods or passengers by road, including taxi companies, who have done honour to their profession through their wide professional experience and specific managerial achievements.
• These specific managerial achievements should include the implementation, within the road transport company, of a set of core values in the areas of moral qualities, labour standards, as well as innovative solutions to improve environmental protection, road safety and productivity. Furthermore, the managers in question must show loyalty towards their colleagues and their IRU national association as well as an outstanding level of know-how obtained through the appropriate vocational training for themselves and their staff.
• Furthermore, to be eligible for the “IRU Award for Top Road Transport Managers”, the manager of the road transport company must:
o have held this position in the same national or international road transport company for at least the last 5 years and have been a member of an IRU national Member Association for at least the last 3 years;
o have proven his successful management of the road transport company through the exceptional growth of the company or through the development of successful specific high quality transport services;
o hold the appropriate CPC Manager Diploma or equivalent qualifications from a reputable road transport training body such as the IRU Academy, or other graduate level diplomas;
o have implemented, within his company, an exemplary “learn to learn” approach for his staff to promote safe, secure, environmentally friendly and efficient road transport by systematically developing his drivers’ skills according to national and international road transport standards and best practice, such as those provided by the IRU Academy;
o have demonstrated his loyalty by actively working with and supporting the actions of his IRU national association in all domains;
o have promoted vocational training, such as the activities of the IRU Academy’s Accredited Training Institutes, to ensure that the road transport industry and its employees are in tune with the latest legislative and practical developments impacting the sector;
o have adopted an internal company policy to promote environmental protection and road safety;
o in the case of a company engaged in the international transport of goods by road, have a proven record of regular, uninterrupted involvement in international road transport as demonstrated, for example, through the regular use of TIR Carnets.
• The nominee should be recognised by the IRU Member Associations and the profession as a manager committed to improve road safety through the implementation of effective measures within his company and through his support for the development and promotion of appropriate and efficient road safety regulations. The presentation of his candidature for this award to his national association is the automatic confirmation by the nominee that, under his management, the transport company and/or himself has no record of serious violation of customs or other administrative regulations.
• The IRU Award for Top Road Transport Managers can be attributed only once to the same person.
• The IRU Member Associations alone are responsible for promoting the IRU Award for Top Road Transport Managers, for distributing the Regulation to potential candidates amongst their membership and for collecting and evaluating the nominations on the basis of the criteria laid down in this IRU Regulation.
• It is the responsibility and duty of the IRU Member Associations alone to select from amongst the candidatures received only those nominees who fully meet all the conditions laid down in this IRU Regulation and to duly transmit the required information to the IRU Secretariat General in Geneva by 31 January of each year.
• The decision to attribute the IRU Award for Top Road Transport Managers is taken by the IRU Presidential Executive. For this purpose, it is the task of the IRU Secretariat General to draw up the list of the nominees satisfying fully all the aforementioned criteria to be submitted to the IRU Presidential Executive by the IRU Member Associations.
• The list of IRU award winners, as approved by the Presidential Executive, together with the corresponding nominative IRU diplomas, lapel pins and award logo, will be issued by the IRU to the IRU Member Associations for distribution to the award winners after the IRU spring meetings each year.
• By transmitting candidatures to the IRU Secretariat General, the national association also commits itself to organise a specific national ceremony, in the presence of the media, to present the IRU award to the IRU award winners with a view to communicating their professionalism and the high quality services provided by road transport companies and, in so doing, improve the image of the profession.
The Top Road Transport Manager award confirms the wide professional experience and outstanding achievements of all nominees. It celebrates the success stories of exemplary managers who deserve international recognition for their high level of know-how and work to raise the profile and strengthen the efficiency of the road transport industry.

The winners of this year’s award come from: Argentina (3), Belarus (2), Czech Republic (1), Estonia (4), FYROM (11), Germany (2), Kazakhstan (7), Latvia (2), Mexico (8), Moldova (2), Morocco (5), Romania (6), Russia (6), Spain (3) and Ukraine (3)


AITA, Moldova
1 Zubco Ruslan “ARNITRANS” SRL
AMERIT, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM)
1 Zlatko Milevski BOMI 10 LOGISTIC
3 Strashko Jakimovski DENI-INTERNACIONAL
4 Dimche Vchkov DI-TRANS
5 Rozetka Monevska DM PRECIZ
7 Ibraim Abdulai IRA TRANS
8 Najdan Milikj NALE TRANS
10 Selajdin Aliov SERA
11 Valeri Trajkovski ZMAJ PROMET DOO – SHTIP

ASMAP, Russia
1 Belyanin Sergey IP Belyanin S.M.
2 Filzhak Pavlo JSC “Intertransexpeditsiya”
3 Sergeev Sergey LLC “AKSS PLUS”
4 Vinichenko Aleksandr LLC “Regul-Avto”
5 Baranovskii Pavel LLC “S.A.V. TRANS”
6 Tereshkov Sergey LLC “Vladstroytrans”

AsMAP UA, Ukraine
3 Vitaliy Kononenko TOV “SATURN-TRANS”

ASTIC, Spain
1 Pedro Gutiérrez Ramírez “La Mota” Transportes y Servicios, S.A.
2 Dulsé Díaz Pérez Gefco España, S.A.

BAMAP, Belarus
1 Viktor Blazhukevich JLLC “M&M Militzer&Münch”
2 Aleh Piatliou Joint Venture “TRANSIT” Limited
BWVL, Germany
1 Jörg Eichhorn Friedrich W. Dauphin GmbH & Co.
2 Rainer Farsch SL Logistics S.a.r.l.

1 Gustavo Gonzalez Cueva Almex
2 Juan José Ortiz Ríos Autotanques de México, S.A. de C.V.
3 Romulo Mejia Duran Autotransportes ROMEDU S.A. de C.V.
4 Manuel Sotelo Suarez Fletes Sotelo, S.A. de C.V.
5 Rogelio Muñoz Sanchez TRACUSA LA RUTA DEL SOL S.A. DE C.V.
6 Antonio Elola Salas Transportes Elola, S.A. de C.V.
7 Alfredo Cardenas Garza Transportes Innovativos, S.A. de C.V.
8 Miguel Ángel Martínez Millán Transportes Marva

CESMAD Bohemia, Czech Republic
1 Zdeněk Lidaj ABS BONIFER
ERAA, Estonia
1 Kuno Lahesoo AS Duve
2 Kalev Liksor AS Keila Trans
3 Burdakov Nikolai AS Narva Auto
4 Toomas Olbrei AS Olbtar

FADEEAC, Argentina
1 Ricardo Cruz ANDREANI
2 Diego Folch CAR QUIMICA srl
3 Matias Alvarez Piris ZARCAM S.A.

FT CGEM, Morocco
1 Amine El Menjra M&B TRANSPORT
2 Mehdi Karim Lamrani MAROTRANS
3 Abdelaziz El Alaoui El Abdellaoui Societe Marocaine Des Transports Rapides – Carre
4 Ahmed Nejjar TCL
5 Younes Mellakh TRANSMEL
KAZATO, Kazakhstan
1 Sergey Krivulko ASCOINVEST Ltd.
2 Vera Zinovyeva Avantage-Double Ltd.
3 Magomed Yandiev Azgard Motors Ltd.
4 Ivan Babich INTKAZTRANS Ltd.
5 Sajida Lykova IR-TRANS Ltd.
6 Vitaly Vadinekov Pushmin A. Sole Trader
7 Yergali Tohtarbaev TET-transport Ltd.
Latvijas Auto, Latvia
1 Igors Bairaševskis J & P LOGISTICS

UNTRR, Romania
1 Radu Gheorghe DO-RA TRAVEL
4 Gheorghe Sufana SC TRANSUF SRL
5 Viorel Angelescu SC VIO TRANSGRUP SRL
6 Ioanesiu Mircea TRANSCOM SA

Top Road Transport Manager 2015 – IRU award

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