Andrew began his career in logistics in 1988 when he joined Danzas in London as a graduate trainee. After a training period covering Air, Ocean Road, Accounting and Sales, with as his first managerial role he took over a road-freight department covering South-East Europe from Switzerland to Turkey. Due to his wide experience in the various disciplines and language skills, he was asked in 1993 to take the operational lead for the implementation of a new IT system and the related processes across the UK, which led in 1995 to a global role at the Swiss head office in Basel as the operational lead for the newly created Business Processes and Organization team. This role took him over the next five years to more than 20 countries across Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Europe, managing diverse projects from system implementations, process and structural improvements and minor acquisitions. After the acquisition by the Deutsche Post of Danzas and later AEI, Andrew was at the heart of the global integration activities, at that time the largest merger the freight forwarding industry had seen.
By working with country management, external consultants such as McKinsey and Company and by building exceptional project teams, the integration was accomplished ahead of schedule and with synergies and customer retention figures far above expectations. Upon completion, Andrew returned to the UK as the Country Head of Business Processes and Organization, and subsequently assumed the role for the European region, but the respite was short-lived and it was soon back to integration activities when Deutsche Post’s latest and largest acquisition, Exel, was brought into the fold to create DHL Global Forwarding. The integration brought with it promotion to Global Head of Business Processes and Organization, and upon successful completion the focus was on optimization and enhancement activities, with a major investment in LEAN/6 Sigma projects, and on quality and the environment. During this period DGF became the first forwarder to hold both ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 certification globally.
At the start of 2009 Andrew joined Panalpina Management as their Global Head of Business Processes and Quality, charged with taking the QHSE, Project Management and Process Improvement activities to the next level. These teams excelled across the board, and Panalpina become then became the first forwarder to achieve global certification in ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 18001 (Quality, Environment and Health & Safety).
In his position reporting to the Chief Operating Office he was heavily involved in various business transformation projects, including the redesign and implementation of the company management structures to move to a product-driven business model. This entailed the end of stand-alone Business Process responsibilities, and in 2012 he was appointed Managing Director of Panalpina’s sub-Saharan Africa business area, a challenging position where his background of major transformation projects, process discipline, QHSE, Compliance and all-round business experience was invaluable, as well as a massive learning experience for him! The demands of the market, with the focus on Oil and Gas, Industrial Projects and with regulatory challenges unlike many other places in the world rounded out his already wide-ranging experience, and it was with regret that he stepped aside from the role when the business area was included in a newly created region of MEAC (Middle East, Africa and CIS).
In 2014 he was asked to assume responsibility for the business aspects of an on-going and challenging project to implement the SAP TM system and related processes in Panalpina, which saw him return to the Head Office and once again work in the business transformation area. Although never easy, he was part of a team that delivered full pilots and started the global deployment of the system, including in the largest and most challenging countries in the network.
Andrew moved back to the UK and in 2018 became a founding director of KTF Stone Limited. He lives in East London with his wife, has 2 adult children, plays 5-a-side football with more enthusiasm than talent, and has a passion for rare soul vinyl.
Personal Reference by Renato Chiavi, former President and CEO of DHL Global Forwarding, now Senior Advisor to the Board of Management, Deutsche Post DHL:
I have worked with both Chris Fahy and Andrew Thorne in various roles over twenty years. Both are stand-out leaders and have worked in executive management positions through some of the most exciting and challenging times for the logistics business. When Andrew worked for me at Danzas Intercontinental he had an exceptional reputation for his knowledge, hard work and integrity, and was relied on to travel the world, managing major projects in countries as diverse as Venezuela, Japan and the United Arab Emirates. I would recommend their global experience, expertise and drive to deliver success without hesitation”