Poland’s quiet achiever

From a start-up operation to one that now employs 30 people and rakes in nine-digit revenue annually – and growing – it’s safe to say LIBERTY Metal Recycling’s export terminal in Poland is a certified success story.

Not that the team is resting on its laurels, or impressive achievements.

For Piotr Kedzierski, Managing Director of LMR Europe, the secrets come down to teamwork, developing and maintaining strong business and commercial networks, investment in modern technology and infrastructure, and applying learnings and lessons from GFG Alliance businesses in other parts of the world.

“We more or less started as a small port collecting scrap metal locally,” he says. “We have to give credit to the people there for what they are achieving.”

From localised operations at Gdansk, in north Poland, the terminal has expanded its footprint to now handle about 300,000mt per year, exporting scrap to Eastern and Western Europe, and, by far the most important current scrap sales market, Turkey.

A focus on people, processes and systems have helped build momentum and capacity over time.

“They hired some younger people with good English communication skills,” Piotr says, adding that has helped to improve and build stronger relationships with established and new customers.

Applying safety best practice from learnings gained from visits to Australian sites, including safe walkways, safety lights on moving equipment and cranes, changes to the site layout including protected areas and increased safety signage, have helped the growing team continue its impeccable safety record despite the significant upscale and increase in activity.

“Safety has become a part of everything we do at the terminal,” Piotr says. “They have weekly and daily safety meetings and briefings, it’s become a big part of the culture.”

“The team intervenes if they see something that’s not right or not safe.”

The other improvement has been implementation of improved IT and financial systems which have improved efficiencies and the operations of the commercial team.

But for Piotr, the terminal’s success comes down to the team and provides evidence of “what’s possible when you get the right people in the right positions.”

“They are happy to work hard, grow the business and are very proud of what’s happening.”

Take a look at the Gdansk site, recently featured in this promotional video capturing their people and operations

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