About GMR Freights
The GMR Freights Group of Companies
GMR Freights commenced operations in 1976 and pioneered the concept of consolidating container loads of mixed goods from the Reef, transporting these by road to Botswana, and subsequently distributing those goods to a wide range of destinations in that country. This remains the core business of the Group, although a considerable number of single destination full-container loads are now transported. In 1985, we launched a similar service to Swaziland. Subsequent growth allowed us to begin a successful consolidation service into Namibia and Lesotho too.
Today, the Group, through our associated companies, has a substantial asset base in Botswana, South Africa and Swaziland, and owns outright all major assets, including warehouse facilities in Gaborone, Johannesburg and Mbabane, and the entire vehicle fleet. Our fleet of vehicles extends to some 80 units, ranging from main line super-links, through freight carriers and local delivery vehicles to pick-ups and forklifts. The Group now consists of several companies, each being responsible for a specific aspect of activity, such as long-haul transport, management of real estate, distribution and warehousing. This structure ensures that all aspects of our service are under our direct control at all times. Our only commercial activity is the provision of goods transport services by road to and within Botswana, Swaziland, Namibia and Lesotho and, by not diverting our attention into other areas, or into air and sea freight, we remain focused and avoid conflicts of priorities and interests.
Most of the goods we distribute are FMCG lines and we are therefore very familiar with this type of traffic and also with the special needs of both the suppliers and the importers of these goods. Other items transported are very diverse and include raw materials, spare parts, tyres, construction equipment and materials, electronic equipment and medical supplies. The clients to whom we deliver include the whole spectrum of organisations, from State departments, hospitals, schools and parastatals, to all branches of private enterprise, large and small companies.
In an average month, we transport and distribute about 1 million kilograms of goods comprising some 5000 consignments and made up of over 100 000 packages of differing shapes and sizes. The typical value of the goods transported in a month is around R40 million, although during peak times, this figure is much higher.
The administration involved in documenting, controlling, customs clearing and tracking these volumes of goods is considerable and we have therefore developed sophisticated in-house computer systems to assist in this regard. We are able to generate detailed monthly reports and many of our larger customers find these reports of immense value for their own costing and sales purposes. Our computer systems are continually being updated and we are able to respond immediately to changes in procedures applied by the authorities at short notice. It is worth mentioning that we are regularly consulted by the Road Freight Association on various matters and, under the auspices of that organisation, we worked closely with the Inland Revenue and Customs authorities of South Africa, Botswana, and Swaziland regarding the introduction of V.A.T. and the consequent major changes to border procedures and documentation. We were the first company to submit EDI clearances to both Botswana Customs and SARS.
It can be seen from the above that we are always looking for opportunities to add value to our service, for the benefit of our clients. All our customers have our complete commitment to their best interests and, as a result, our client base is generally long term in nature and much of our new business comes by way of direct recommendation from existing clients. GMR has always considered customer service to be the foundation on which the Group has developed and our faith in this fundamental policy remains absolute. We believe that by continuing to improve our service in all areas, we will continue to justify our clients’ trust in us and thereby remain the leading company in our field.