46 Industry: International Logistics


More than $9.5 million




Rob Erskine, 36, and Scott Mercer, 45

Head Office


Year Founded





International Logistics



Since appearing in the Smart50 award last year at number 10, Sydney-based logistics company Pioneer International Logistics has continued its strong trajectory despite curbed growth across the industry.

“We have been bucking the trend by growing,” says Rob Erskine, who founded the company in 2009 with Scott Mercer, after the two saw a market gap for a mid-tier logistics provider.

“We don’t see the market growing across the industry due to economic conditions. There’s not a lot of growth from our client base, so we need to focus more on sales.”

Erskine says he put the company’s growth down to an increased market share in its core business, which is the provision of services to mid-market Australian clients with a focus on import ocean freight from south-east and north-east Asia.

He says as the business has grown, the company has been able to become more specific about the type of business it wants to be and the type of clients it wants to work with.

“In the last 12 months we have seen an increase in larger corporate clients taking an interest in our product offering and our partnering approach to business, so I think the next big moves will be more of the same, with a focus on active procurement, lean operations and client retention.

“We have a fairly realistic picture of where we would like to be in 5-7 years and realise that our business is not infinitely scalable, and it doesn’t have to be.”

The business is on track to grow by at least another 30% this financial year and Erskine says he and Mercer have no plan to exit the business.

“It is a long-term commitment for the founders,” he says.

“The focus for the business is to just keep doing more of what we do really well.”

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