Meet Ron, new Business Unit Manager for Liquid Bulk

In March, Ron began his new challenge as Business Unit Manager for Liquid Bulk. Liquid Bulk is the transportation of liquids, both hazardous and non-hazardous, in Tanks and tank containers. The perfect opportunity to learn more about who Ron is, why he chose our company, and what his goals are for 2023.

Can you briefly introduce yourself?

Ron: “I am Ron Simpelaar, 54 years old and married to Natalie. Together we have one daughter: Megan. I currently live in Breskens in the Dutch province of Zeeland, where I am also originally from.”

How did you grow into this role?

Ron: “I have been working within the logistics industry since 1995 and I too started at the bottom of the ladder. So I have had the time and opportunity to learn the ropes in every layer of the business. In 2008, I took my first steps within the intermodal part of the transportation chain. Intermodal transport is a specific way of transport where a loading unit (container – trailer – swap body) is transported from A to B via different means of transport (by road, rail, or water).

Why did you choose H.Essers?
Ron: “Three factors were decisive in this:

  • – Intermodal nature of the Liquid Bulk business unit: my knowledge of intermodal transport coupled with the Intermodal DNA of the Liquid Bulk business unit was the reason for me to take up the opportunity presented. It is my belief that Intermodal transport is the future for long-distance transportation of goods because it is cost-effective, fast, and better for the environment by reducing nitrogen emissions.
  • – The family nature: thanks to our family nature, we are more open to change and adaptation. Many multinationals want to control everything from one central position, which makes it take longer to make decisions. We do allow that quick decision-making process. This creates trust between parties and fosters the mindset to change and improve.
  • – Entrepreneurship: I can very much identify with this business value. I myself also like to be on the front line to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves. The noses must be pointed in the same direction; individually you can only make a difference if the team is perfectly aligned.

Furthermore, I have always respected H.Essers as a company. This is a fresh company that dares to make strategically bold and innovative decisions.”

Since March, you have been the new Busniess Unit Manager for Liquid Bulk. What are your main duties?

Ron: “I report to Pascal Vranken, and my main task is to merge different companies that were acquired within our Liquid Bulk division into one entity. Thus, we will integrate the different cultures by fusing all strengths and knowledge with the H.Essers DNA. This will create a strong foundation for further growth, both organically and through possible future acquisitions.
In terms of day-to-day operations, streamlining all our processes has top priority. We are currently redesigning these processes and linking them to the slightly changed organizational structure within the Liquid Bulk department. That way we will be better armed for the future.”

The rebranding of the Liquid Bulk sites will undoubtedly help in this regard. Why is it important and what did you learn from it?

Ron: “To the outside world, a rebranding is of course a strengthening of your market position. We want to come out as a unified company that can offer a one-stop shop solution to customers thanks to intermodality. And internally, employees are given a benchmark, a stepping stone to look ahead with the H.Essers DNA running through their veins.

The rebranding has taught me that colleagues are definitely open to change. That’s a good thing because it gives energy to move forward. By engaging and guiding everyone to see the results, you also create motivation among colleagues to step into the new story with you. Therefore, a new structure is now on the table that will create clarity for everyone. From then on, we will only be looking forward.”

What are your biggest challenges in 2023?

Ron: ” There are three:

  • – Streamlining our structure with processes and working methods aligned. I’ve already talked about that, but it’s still super important nonetheless.
  • – Growing further in our segment. In that area, we are doing well. Our volumes are increasing, and thanks to our internal cost monitoring we are able to submit competitive offers to customers.
  • – Establishing new corridors (= transport routes). We examine how we can transport as efficiently as possible by using all our resources: sites, colleagues, storage facilities, … This requires cooperation between planning, customer service, sales, among others, and also other business units within our company. The ultimate goal is to create a win-win situation for both the customer and ourselves.”