Find exactly what you are looking for

  • Select your location and language

    Denzil, CEO, DB Schenker South Africa

    Denzil is the CEO for DB Schenker in South Africa – where he has been with the organization for over 30 years. In a recent conversation with him, we asked him all about his journey so far at DB Schenker, his thoughts on the changing landscape of logistics in South Africa given the COVID-19 pandemic, and his take on what it takes to be a good leader. Here are the highlights of the interview.

    "Sometimes the best 'you' have is not enough. You’ll find 'the best' by working together."

    Denzil / CEO, DB Schenker South Africa

    Starting at the beginning, Denzil, when did your career at DB Schenker start?
    In September 1984, I started as a Customs Pay-In clerk. In today’s terms, this title or position doesn’t even exist anymore, but basically, I was a messenger and had to drive twice per day to submit all payments and documents to SARS (South African Revenue Service) for customs clearances. And before you ask, yes, it was all manual in those days. We even used carbon paper to get our copies.

    36 years later, and you are at the helm of DB Schenker South Africa. What has been your career progression over the years?
    Well, in 1992, I was appointed as the Volkswagen Delegate in operations, and two years later, I was promoted into my first managerial position. I moved to Port Elizabeth with my family and opened the DB Schenker Port Elizabeth branch. I spent seven years in Port Elizabeth, which we enjoyed. In 1999, I moved back to Johannesburg in a Contract Logistics and Automotive project role. It wasn’t long after that that I moved into the General Manager position for Air and Ocean. In 2004, I was promoted into the Chief Operations Officer position. This was already a great achievement, so when I was promoted again in 2011 to the Chief Executive Officer position, this was extraordinary. And ten years later, I’m still here!

    In your opinion, what personality traits make a good leader?
    Humility and empathy, the ability to be realistic about your expectations and objectives, being dedicated and committed to a specific cause.

    How would you describe DB Schenker in one word?

    Having come out of 2020, what do you think is the single most important company trait that will ensure DB Schenker’s success over the next two years?
    This I will take from our values – Working Together.

    What do you think are the biggest challenges our industry will face in the next five years?
    We’re not the most innovative industry, so keeping pace with our customers will be challenging. Keeping up with their rate of change and being ahead of their expectations will be a battle.

    In which sectors do you expect to see the most growth over the next decade, both globally and locally?
    Renewable and alternative energy like solar. It is already one of the fastest-growing industries, admittedly, off a low base.

    How do you see the logistics industry changing in the coming ten years?
    I believe we will see a few more significant mergers and acquisitions, which will create consolidations amongst the competition. I think this is going to start happening at a faster rate compared to what we have experienced. Data and technology are going to progress and evolve even more rapidly, which will have a major impact on logistics – we’re seeing this already, and there’s definitely more to come. We’re also going to see more adventurous strategies – if you’re not thinking of different ways of doing things, you’ll be left behind.

    In your opinion, what is the key to DB Schenker’s success in South Africa?
    Well, this is a combination of the brand coupled with a reliable team. Neither one of these components will be successful on its own, they must work hand-in-hand. The brand is bigger than us, but its the people that make the brand successful.

    What part do you think robotics will play in the logistics industry in the next ten years in South Africa?
    Tough question, I know it is going to be significant. The routine and mundane tasks like data capture or manual picking will be nonexistent. It’s because of this that we’ll need to protect and evolve our workforce.

    Do you think we’re going to see driverless vehicles in South Africa anytime soon?
    No, not anytime soon. There is still too much infrastructural development that we need as a country.

    If you were to give an inspiring quote to the DB Schenker team, what would it be?
    Sometimes the best “you” have is not enough. You’ll find “the best” by working together.

    What is the most challenging part of your job?
    Working with people who have different agendas and not focused on the business objectives.

    What part of your job do you love the most?
    Having the opportunity to face different and new challenges daily, the variety is vital for me.

    What do you do for fun, outside of work, of course?
    I am quite sporty; I enjoy playing soccer and going to the gym. I’ll hardly turn down an opportunity to play some volleyball, but I am also a family man, so spending time with my family is very important.

    Ready to start your own DB SCHENKER story?

    • Florence, Kentucky, USA

      Senior Customer Service Representative

      Contract Logistics/Supply Chain Mgmt
      Graduates, Full time

      View job
    • Göteborg, Sweden

      Trade Specialist Ocean

      Ocean Freight
      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Gothenburg, Sweden

      Traffic Coordinator med inriktning Ekonomi - Schenker Dedicated Services, Göteborg

      Land Transport
      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Halmstad, Sweden

      Sommarjobb som Distributionschaufför (C-lastbil) till Schenker Åkeri Halmstad

      Land Transport
      Professionals, Part time

      View job
    • Heston, London, United Kingdom

      Warehouse Operative - Days Shift

      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Toruń, Kujawsko-Pomorskie, Poland


      Land Transport
      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Strasbourg, Alsace, France

      Adjoint chef de quai H/F

      Land Transport
      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Gunskirchen, Upper Austria, Austria

      Teamleiter Wareneingang (w/m/d)

      Contract Logistics/Supply Chain Mgmt
      Professionals, Full time

      View job
    • Nuneaton, Warwickshire, United Kingdom

      Pricing Specialist

      Land Transport
      Professionals, Full time

      View job

    Consent to use Cookies and collect data

    We use first party cookies and similar technologies to ensure that you get the best possible experience on our website. Cookies provide us with statistics to adjust and optimize the setting and content of this website to your interests and to place relevant advertisement by using first and third parties, too. By clicking "Allow all Cookies" you accept the processing of your data and its transfer to first and third parties. By clicking "Reject Tracking" you will only accept the necessary cookies for the operation of this website. 

    You can find more details regarding the use and purpose of cookies, including first and third-party cookies, in our cookie settings. You can reject the use of cookies and other technologies and withdraw your consent any time with future effect by deactivating the respective code category in the cookie settings. You can find more information regarding these settings and the processing of your data in our privacy policy.

  • Cookies and tracking scripts

    We want to give you the opportunity to make an informed decision for or against the use of cookies, which are not mandatory for the technical functions of the website. Cookies are small text files in which personal data can be stored.

    Our privacy policy is intended to ensure that you are fully aware of the collection and processing of data, including through the use of cookies through our sites, and that you can make a decision that is appropriately informed. However you can change your cookie settings at any time.

    Please find further information within our data privacy policy.