Broekman Logistics is a full-service logistics organization specializing in ocean, road, rail, air and multimodal transport. Founded in 1960, the company operates 3 main business units: Forwarding and Shipping, Warehousing and Distribution, and Breakbulk Terminals.
We had a chance to speak with Chris Van Der Tuin, Director Group Controlling of Broekman Logistics. Here below Mr. Van Der Tuin shares his experience with Invest for Excel®.
When the need for change arises
“Our company employs various software solutions and tools that help increase efficiency within our group. We have our financial system in place, operational system, modern CRM etc. However, when it comes to investment appraisal and decisions regarding acquisitions - we did not have a solid solution. We basically used Excel spreadsheets”– says Chris laughing recalling that time and continues:
“There were two main reasons why we decided to switch to Invest for Excel®. First of all, it is important to understand that each investment project is unique. There are no exact same scenarios and identical situations. Every time you need to build and rebuild your models.
What is more vital - you need to check whether these calculations do not contain any mistakes. Thus, it was time consuming to do it in Excel, each time, basically from scratch: create and fix layouts, formulas and so forth.
Secondly, the workflow between different business units wasn’t smooth. Business unit controllers used to prepare e.g. CAPEX proposals, based on their own Excel models which were not standardized. Sometimes they used different interest rates, some calculations were detailed, others were very rough and high over. It required a lot of time and efforts to check and approve them, because they were not comparable.”
“Invest for Excel® eliminated these problems”
“We have been using Invest for Excel® for quite some time. In year 2012, Jens Westerbladh, the CEO of DataPartner came to Netherlands to give Invest for Excel® demonstration for us. There were some other software solutions, but they were not as flexible as Invest for Excel®. So, we decided to choose this particular program.” – explains Chris.
Do you know how to use Excel?
If the answer is yes - then you already know how to use Invest for Excel®!
“Indeed, it was easy to learn how to use the program. Everything what you need to do is to provide basic data and model your revenue and costs, the program will take care about the rest of the work: you don’t need to think how to build formulas or layouts.”
“There are almost no boundaries to model any type of business.”
“We had one intensive in-house training with our business unit controllers and it was enough to start to use the program within Broekman Logistics”
Invest for Excel® in action at Broekman Logistics
“Broekman Logistics operates 3 main business divisions:
- Breakbulk terminals
- Warehousing and Distribution
- Forwarding and Shipping.”
“The first 2 are quite CAPEX-driven. Business controllers of those units use Invest for Excel® to prepare investment proposals. When it comes to Forwarding and Shipping – it is not asset-based, so we only use Invest for Excel® when we are assessing possible acquisitions.” – elaborates Chris and continues:
“Normally, I use Invest for Excel® from 3 to 5 times per year. In our company, Invest for Excel® supports decision making process. We don’t base our decisions regarding investment and acquisition alternatives solely on Invest for Excel®, because there are also other aspects that should be taken into consideration. But with this software we can quickly get a fairly good view on discounted cash flow calculations, EBITDA-multiple calculations and so on.”
“In my opinion one of the most valuable functions is possibility to quickly create and compare various scenarios.”
“Another useful feature is sensitivity analysis: you can instantly see how changes in WACC, business drivers, revenue, pricing or costs affect the overall profitability of the project.
You simply enter collected data and the rest is done by Invest for Excel®. You don’t have to worry about formulas and you can be confident about correctness and accuracy of your calculations.” – Chris finalizes.
Images are used with permission of Broekman Logistics.
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