Ship Shape

As Seen In Forbes & Fortune
The Future of Business in New York City

The following story was released in Forbes & Fortune in June 2024.

Global logistics company Horizon Air Freight specializes in providing supply chain solutions for spare parts and supplies to maritime vessels while working to make the world a better place

Since 1970, Horizon Air Freight has been delivering spare parts to ship owners and managers worldwide.

From chemical and oil tankers to container and dry bulk vessels, “if your ship is traveling around the world, you have a constant need for replacement and spare parts,” says Steve Leondis, CEO. Horizon’s clients know they will receive their orders in an efficient and timely manner, no matter where they are in the world, avoiding loss of time and money.

Leondis’ father, a Greek immigrant, started Horizon with a handful of contacts in the Greek maritime industry. “He was a self-made man and entrepreneur,” Leondis says fondly.

After graduating from Yale University in 1983, Leondis joined his siblings at Horizon. He worked his way up the ranks, from warehouse to operations, accounting, and sales, eventually to CEO. During his tenure, Horizon has become a global leader in marine logistics, as one of the top five companies in their sector.

Expansion has been the name of the game for Leondis, who has overseen Horizon’s evolution into trucking, air transport, warehousing, and total logistics services—including delivery of food and beverages—for the luxury cruise market.

Exponential Growth

Headquartered in New York, Horizon handles logistics for over 6,000 vessels and makes roughly 60,000 deliveries globally each year. A truly international company, Horizon operates in offices across the world including Singapore, Istanbul, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Miami, Athens, Ushuaia, and Houston. After co-investing with ICV Partners—a specialized private equity firm—in 2019, Horizon’s revenue has grown roughly 600%, and their staff has grown substantially from 28 to 400.

“Our clients are a blue chip roster of ship owners and publicly traded companies,” says Leondis. “We are constantly reinvesting in our company to improve our infrastructure, hire more staff, and upgrade our technology to better serve our clients.”

What differentiates Horizon from competitors is staffers’ “can do” attitude and dedication to white glove customer service. “We are nimble and knowledgeable in our space and move fast while being competitively priced,” says Leondis. “Our staff is what makes Horizon unique among its competitors.”

Future Forward

Blessed with a 38-year marriage, three children, and recognition as an Ivy League basketball legend in 2022, Leondis isn’t slowing down in his aspirations. He and the senior leadership team have forecasted a growth of at least 250% by 2029 as they propel Horizon to become the No. 1 marine logistics provider worldwide. In addition, he dedicates much of his free time to supporting Project Nyame Nsa, a nonprofit he and his daughter co-founded that provides holistic care for orphans in Africa.

Those goals, and more, inspire Leondis to focus not only on Horizon’s legacy, but also to continue growing the business in a powerful way. “It’s a way of ensuring that Horizon employees like my son Alex, who joined the family business in 2020, have a solid and meaningful future ahead,” Leondis concludes.

Horizon Air Freight Honors Staff with Labor Day Employee Recognition BBQ

Employee recognition bbq

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Horizon Air Freight, an acclaimed global marine logistics company providing solutions by air, land, and sea for more than 50 years, recently hosted a Labor Day Employee Recognition BBQ to honor the hard work of its esteemed staff.

The event, which took place over Labor Day Weekend at Horizon’s headquarters in Jamaica, NY, served to thank Horizon employees for their years of dedication to the company. A BBQ lunch was cooked and served on-site as dozens of staff members gathered to take in the food, fellowship, and festivities.

“Whether it’s a warehouse worker, truck driver, or senior sales person, everyone does their part and deserves to know just how much they’re appreciated,” said Steve Leondis, Horizon Air Freight CEO. “Our expert staff has always been the backbone of our success, and we would not be where we are without their tireless efforts.”

Keeping the world’s fleets equipped and supplied is a massive global undertaking, dependent on an international network of suppliers, warehouses, ports, and agents. Fleet technical directors, procurement managers, purchasing agents, captains, and engineers work heroically to keep their ships safe and productive. And for 50 years, they have relied on Horizon to get their spares, supplies, and equipment where they need them, when they need them, no matter what it takes.

Horizon Group keeps fleets shipshape and on schedule with global marine logistics by air, land, and sea. Critical marine spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide: consolidated, expedited, delivered door to deck. With more than 50 years of experience, we keep more than 3,000 ships safe, able, and sailing. For more information, visit

Employee recognition bbq

Why I Joined Horizon, and Why I Stay

We’ve been experiencing record growth at Horizon this year, welcoming new faces and expanding our diverse pool of talented, hard-working people — all dedicated to keeping your fleets safe, shipshape, and running on time. But we’re also blessed with many veteran team members who have stayed with us over our decades of change.

In the interest of ensuring our values and mission remain on course for our employees and our clients in this time of expansion, we checked in with a few key players to understand what makes Horizon a place they keep coming back to, day after day and year after year. Here’s what they had to say.

Jim GassertJim Gassert

Our Executive Vice President, Jim Gassert, has been with Horizon for 42 years. In the early days of his career with us, he oversaw exportation in our Hellenic aerospace program, formed in partnership with the Greek Air Force and NATO. From there, he evolved into air and ocean exporting, and did fill-in work for our domestic department. Eventually, he moved into the role of Import Manager, where he worked for many years until just recently transitioning to his current role.

“I’ve grown and evolved quite a bit,” Jim confirms. “And one of the big attractions of this business is that it really allows you to do that. You can be in any one of the different universes in which we operate, which keeps things fun and interesting.”

This opportunity to evolve was a big part of what attracted Jim to Horizon in the first place. “When I started I was very young,” he elaborates, “looking for something that was different, challenging. Not just physical labor, but a job that included problem solving, and would encourage me to be a part of a team to help solve issues collaboratively. Even to this day there’s always a flux in a client’s needs, so it’s still a great place for anyone looking for challenge and change.”

That Horizon was small and family-owned at the time was also a draw. “I was looking for a secure job that would have longevity,” Jim asserts. “My dad had been with the Long Island Lighting company most of his life, and I wanted something similar. When Horizon started it was family-owned, and though we’ve moved past those days into being a global provider and leader in what we do, the leadership team still maintains that same touch with the workforce. Direct communication with leadership is not only available but encouraged. To be able to have a voice with leadership on any topic, even if you’re a new addition, is encouraged and a great asset.”

Jim also observes he isn’t the only one who has remained dedicated to Horizon. “We are in a unique niche, and that affords us long-standing relationships with clientele that have stayed with us through the years. Rarely does a client leave us. When they’re onboarded, we do everything we can to make them very comfortable and very satisfied, generating a loyalty that will carry through.”

To illustrate how dedicated we are to our clients, he shares a story: “A Greek ship owner wanted to build a duplicate of a chapel that was in his mother’s home town, so that she could replicate her experience as a young girl in Greece even though she had relocated in upstate New York. So he had the chapel built in Greece, and then wanted to ship it over. This all sounded well and good, until we discovered the completed chapel was extremely tall and heavy, and had to be trucked through small towns upstate. I was responsible for ushering the project from beginning to end, and personally accompanied it as we traveled. Sometimes the electrical wires would have to be propped up with wooden poles to allow the truck to pass through on our pilgrimage. Obviously it was a difficult logistical move with all of the customs, permits, and transports to arrange, but when it was in place — not a single pane of stained glass even cracked —and looking so beautiful, everyone was so gracious and thankful for all the efforts.”

Now Jim is pleased to pass along his knowledge to others. “This is a fun time for me,” he reflects, “because I have a chance to mentor to some degree and to share some of these experiences, hopefully in a way that will be fruitful for the people who listen, and will help them as they start to do their own 20 – 30 years with us. That’s fun, because it’s no longer about me; it’s about us, and particular people who have the skill set and the ability to grow and rise. Our business is not written down in a book. It’s a spider web of information that can be used at any one point, and now I’m helping them navigate that web to make the right choice. It’s satisfying to get the chance to let others stand in the sunshine, hopefully in a way that will help make it just as interesting, fun, and challenging for them as it was for me. It’s very rewarding to share, mentor and give.”

Dicle Deveci HeadShot

Dicle Deveci

Though she’s about to celebrate her one-year anniversary with Horizon, Sales Operations Manager Dicle Deveci was no newcomer to shipping logistics when she started with us. She came with ten years of experience at both small and large firms, and is now enthusiastically sharing that experience and knowledge with us. “I want to take my learnings from corporate life, and tailor it to Horizon to help make them successful in expanding,” she says. “Even though we are a niche company, we would like our customers to feel they are having a corporate-level experience.”

Having the chance to share her expertise is one of the things Dicle appreciates most about Horizon. “The more an organization becomes corporatized,” she explains, “inevitably, you are distanced from the operations side, because your tasks become more specialized. Here, working for a niche company, everyone is open to the exchange of information and solutions. This creates great momentum that’s professionally rewarding because we’ve already started to see the fruits of our work within just a year.”

Because she was moving from a big, well-known company to a smaller firm, Dicle admits she was unsure about the transition at first. She wondered if she would fit in, and how the organization would run. “But from day one,” she says happily, “I felt like I had been working there for more than a year. Everyone was warm, helpful, welcoming. All the question marks went away right away.”

“This warmth and welcome is extended to our clients, too,” Dicle continues. “Horizon forms relationships with our customers as a partnership. It’s not just transactional, but a long-term partnership. We are trying to make their lives easier. We build trust; we want to help them grow their business, so it’s a two-way relationship and not just a balance sheet. We want to grow and learn with them by passing on our market intelligence. We have had customers for over 20 years, and that long-term partnership really makes us stand out.”

Dicle also echoes Jim when she points out another outstanding aspect of working at Horizon: “Our industry is very dynamic. It’s not repetitive. Every day there is a new challenge. If you want to build your skill set or challenge yourself each day, the industry and the company is the way to go. You gain insights into yourself, develop problem-solving skills, and adopt fresh perspectives for every challenge. Creative thinking plays a crucial role in the industry. And you have teammates all over the world.”

Sviatlana Bareka

Sviatlana Bareka

Import Manager Sviatlana Bareka is another relatively new addition to the Horizon team — having celebrated her first anniversary with us in June — but like Dicle and Jim, she too is thrilled by the growth potential and supportive environment she’s found.

“Horizon has a positive company culture,” she says, “and the company provides opportunities to learn from experienced professionals and to contribute to delivering exceptional experiences to customers while ensuring a ‘family like’ environment in the office. With the support of its extremely talented management team, Horizon keeps employees engaged, motivated, and goal-driven. This makes Horizon a great place to grow and achieve long term goals and objectives.”

Though this is her first managerial role, Sviatlana had a great deal of logistics experience when she started with us, including working with clients, shipping agencies, and brokers. When she received her Customs Brokers license in 2022, and this new opportunity arose, “I made the decision and I’ve never regretted it,” she says happily. “They invest a lot in the personnel and the technology. They are really growing and it’s been great to be a part of.”

Like her counterparts, Sviatlana is also pleased to be a part of something unique. “We’re not selling products,” she explains, “we’re selling services. The whole team is working hard to make arrangements to take care of freight, customs clearance, delivery — all delivered to the vessels on time. We are doing something unique in the field, because we are not delivering to regular customers but to the vessels themselves. It involves a lot of arrangements, which forces Horizon to work hard as a team. Horizon is a company with a great reputation, and its positive brand image built over 53 years is what attracts and retains customers.”

And she’s already been put through her paces. “I can remember handling the heaviest piece of equipment in Horizon’s history (around 45MT), shipped by ocean as RORO cargo. We faced multiple challenges, as a lot of coordination was involved. We had to request a special appointment at the port, which required crane arrangements, and extra payment for loading/unloading, because the crane was available only on specific days. Because the cargo was oversized and overweight, a special truck needed to be hired for transportation, with special permits. Plus there was a lot of coordination with the consignee as they needed to make the same arrangements at the facility: getting a crane, as well as an unloading team.”

But to Sviatlana, it was all worth it. “The project was completed successfully, and we got lots of positive feedback from the satisfied customer.”

Situations like this one — paired with our future plans — keep Sviatlana growing, too. “There are many stories in logistics,” she says. “We are facing unique and unpredictable situations on a daily basis. This is my first managerial role, and I am very grateful to the company for their trust, and for providing me with an opportunity to transform my team. Horizon invests in technologies and personnel and is continuously growing. We are currently in the process of implementing a brand new working platform. The company has grown a ton since my arrival last year.”

We are grateful for Sviatlana, Dicle, and Jim for their hard work and dedication — along with that of every team member. We look forward to supporting their ascendence, and also to growing more with you. To learn more about how we can help you get your fleets whatever they need, wherever they need it, delivered door-to-deck, on time and on budget, start a conversation with us today.

Horizon Group welcomes David Goldin as Global Controller

The acclaimed global marine logistics company expands leadership team amid recent growth

Horizon Group, an acclaimed global marine logistics company providing solutions by air, land, and sea for more than 50 years, recently announced David Goldin will be joining its leadership team as Global Controller.

Goldin, a veteran corporate accountant, will oversee various aspects of Horizon Group from accounts receivable and collections to staff development and tax compliance. Among his initial projects, Goldin will be designing and developing a cash flow reporting system. Goldin says he looks forward to utilizing his design skills and versatility while sharing his strong understanding of U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and how to best apply them.

“At Horizon Group, we pride ourselves in putting together a strong team of experts,” says Steve Leondis, CEO of Horizon Group, “not only for the betterment of our business, but to provide the best customer experience possible. With David on board, our team will be even stronger.”

Goldin joins Horizon Group in the midst of the company’s recent growth. In March, powerhouse companies Horizon Air Freight and Swift Marine entered a strategic business partnership as Horizon Group, offering a unique combination of marine logistics and port agency services in North America, South America, Asia, and Europe.

“I’m thrilled to see Horizon Group grow and thrive,” Goldin says. “With a company that’s growing like Horizon is, the sky’s the limit. We have access to resources that will continue to take the business to the next level, and I’m excited to do my part.”

Interviews are available upon request.

Horizon Group keeps fleets shipshape and on schedule with global marine logistics by air, land, and sea. Critical marine spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide: consolidated, expedited, delivered door to deck. Whatever you need, wherever you need it, we’ll get it there on time and on budget. With more than 50 years of experience, we keep more than 3,000 ships safe, able, and sailing. For more information, visit

How to Feed a Cruise Ship

During the spring and summer months, many families, individuals, and couples look to cruises for their vacations. Traveling in this way can provide exotic locations, stunning views, easy navigation, and decadent service all in one place.

Though it may be easy to imagine what goes into the majestic construction of each vessel, the careful mapping of routes, and the luxury of on-board experiences — what does it take to feed everyone on board?

The Particulars of Equipping a Mini City

“A cruise ship is really a mini city on the sea,” says our Director of Cruise Operations, Alex Durante. “It needs everything imaginable onboard for its week-long voyage: all sorts of dry and perishable foods that originate globally, linens for cabins, spare parts for the engine room, chlorine for the pools, an array of cleaning chemicals, every type of beverage, waste management equipment, whatever’s needed to fulfill the entertainment on board. The list goes on and on, and all these items need to be strategically shipped to the vessel week after week. But in the end, all of it has to get there on budget, precisely on time, and without any room for error or delay.”

“It’s not like a cruise vessel can stop to pick up things,” Horizon’s Chief Commercial Officer, Josh Roman, adds. “Whatever they have on board is what they have on board. If an essential ingredient is missing, they may have to substitute it. Even if a chef is working with the wrong kind of flour, they’ve still got to make the bread.”

Supplying such a “city on the sea” requires the labor of hundreds — if not a few thousand — individuals depending on the size of the ship. There are many moving parts, and a lot of provisions needed. “For smaller luxury cruises,” Durante says, “when it comes to meats, poultry, etc., we’re shipping somewhere around 5,000 pounds for a single voyage. Then say 7,000 pounds of produce, 15,000 pounds of beer, alcohol, wine, soda; you can see over 2,000 pounds of soda alone. And for those with a sweet tooth, 300 pounds of ice cream.”

At Horizon Air Freight, we specialize in catering to smaller, boutique operators: ships that usually limit their passengers to 200 – 1,000 people on board, as they often have unique itineraries requiring customized solutions. Though the volume may be less than that of a larger cruise line, the needs may actually be greater due to the areas the vessel(s) will operate in. Tickets for some of our clients can be thousands of dollars. Passengers are therefore expecting an even higher level of service, because they’re receiving an even more intimate experience.

“We provide white glove service for all of those customers,” Durante says. “Whatever guests want, we can make it possible.”

“Everyone on these trips,” expands Roman, “expects that when they bite into a tomato, it’s absolutely the freshest tomato you can get. But a lot of people don’t realize how that tomato got to that salad. We’re the ones receiving the product and are aiding and supplying it to the ship.”

Lots — and Lots — of Logistics

Durante expands on how this whole process works: “Months prior to the start of a specific season, take The Mediterranean Season for example, our customers come to us with a list of all their date on boards (DOBs). This list generally includes several dozen port calls per ship. We need to provide each customer with the dates they need to have all of their purchases delivered to our consolidation hub for each DOB.

“Urgent items are shipped by air freight to the ship, but 95% of all procured items are shipped by sea, due to weight and volume. Ocean freight planning involves a strategic and very calculated review of the schedules for all transportation carriers with over-the-water service to the customers’ unique destinations. It is also our fiduciary responsibility to the customer to identify the carrier(s) with the most cost effective, yet direct service.

“Once we find a sailing schedule where the cargo vessel’s ETA is aligned with the client’s DOB, we then have to work backwards to identify all of the dates in between; i.e. the ETD from the origin seaport, the cut-off date at the origin export terminal, the date which all inventory picking/prepping/packing will commence, and the most important date of them all, the date by which all of the clients’ purchase orders need to be delivered to our warehouse. We have one chance to make delivery to the ship, so there’s zero room for error!”

Multiply this by the fact that several of our customers have 10+ ships all over the world at once. Each ship is in and out of a different port once a week for 52 weeks a year. “52 weeks for 10 ships is 520 DOBs. That’s in excess of 3,000 different yet strategic dates we need to calculate for that customer alone to account for a full year’s itinerary. It can get dizzying.”

But at Horizon, we’re equipped for all of this. “We do the same thing for cruises as we do everyone else — work backwards from the dates when they require things,” says our Director of Marine Logistics, Rosemarie Susino. “We don’t make the decision about how anything’s being transported, because ultimately that’s the customer’s decision. But we do plan out with the knowledge that in general, ocean transit takes much longer. Air freight is faster but more expensive. That’s why these cruise owners try to plan so far in advance so that we can schedule things through the year. It’s more affordable, and easier for their schedule.”

How do we ensure so many deliveries at once? “We just dot every i and cross every t,” Horizon’s Senior Routing Manager, Bridget Aglio, says with humor. “We use all means possible to confirm delivery: Phone calls, computers, cell phones. It’s a lot of communication. Some of our methods depend on delivery location as well. For example, some of our worldwide warehouses are in our WorldTrack 2.0 system, so everyone can see when delivery happens. Other ports we’re not linked up with, so we do it the old fashioned way — with emails and phone calls.”

Navigating Obstacles

Even with advance planning and preparation, unexpected challenges can occur. For example, “At Christmastime, airlines are full and often have less cargo space,” Susino says. “There are certain services you can pay for with airlines to make yourself a priority, but honestly anything could be bumped. Most airlines will talk to us about the reality, and then we go look for other options. We don’t tell people we can do things if we’re not sure we can. Weather, for example, is always out of our control. We just do our best.”

“On occasion we’ve picked up freight ourselves and moved it to another airline which may have a sooner departure,” Aglio adds. “We’ve had to do that a few times.”

Regardless of when the cargo is due to arrive, location also has to be taken into consideration. “Most countries have different requirements or regulations for food,” Roman says. “For example, in some countries, specific animal products have to arrive at the same port it’ll be departing from. You can’t ship it to some other city and have it sent to the port of departure. So workarounds are needed there.”

“And then too what happens if there’s a strike?” Managing Director at Delver Agents, Vero Palacios, adds. “During the World Cup last year, there was an impromptu holiday in all of Argentina. So we all jumped in to find solutions for that unexpected delay.”

Sometimes even the cost of getting something in a hurry can pose a challenge. “You might save a fortune using a standard courier service, but it’s never going to get there,” Roman cautions. “And the difference between something arriving and not – it’s just too great. Imagine what happens if you have a special menu focusing on Norwegian salmon, and it doesn’t show up. The expense and hassle of redoing the whole menu alone would be considerable. And in worse cases, the expense of refunding tickets for disappointed passengers, or reversing the damage done to your brand — it outweighs anything you would spend to ensure it gets there.”

Whether it’s location, weather systems, speedy freight needs, or anything else we have to work around, Durante reinforces: “We are taking care of our clients in the same way they take care of their passengers.”

Servicing Special Requests

“Occasionally you do have last-minute requests,” Susino says. “Just recently we did a shipment for a boutique cruise line that requested a particular coffee maker from Europe. All their other containers had gone out, so we shipped it by air freight. To get to one particular passenger.”

The team can share several other examples, too:

“One time there was an inquiry for a rare type of fish from the New Orleans area that a passenger requested for a dinner service,” Durante says. “The cruise vessel was going to be calling Belize in a few days. We had to pick up the fish from this specialized company, bring it to our warehouse, pack it with dry ice, and fly it via perishable air service to deliver it to the vessel in Belize on the DOB — all for one meal.”

Palacio illuminates further: “In South America, lobster is a warm water crustacean. It’s really not available. So we had to bring some in from Cuba. The crate was full of live lobsters. Our Suppliers Division Manager had to go to Buenos Aires in summer, where it’s 84 degrees in the shade, wait there for them to arrive, make sure the temperature was still okay, and get the lobsters to the ship. Kobe beef in Ushuaia also does not exist. When it’s requested, we have to fly it from Japan to Ushuaia.”

Durante shares a final story: “Last month, we had a special transportation request for 5 kgs of specific caviar that originates from California, for serving at a chartered wedding cruise boarding in Miami. We needed to make sure it remained at the precise temperature during its transit, and once it arrived in Miami, we had to have it stored over the weekend without breaking its cold chain environment. Then it was delivered on the morning of the DOB via a refrigerated truck to the cruise ship. In situations like this, you can’t go to a standard courier company and say ‘Can you pick up this caviar in CA and send it to this cruise ship?’ You need a specialty company like Horizon.”

That’s because adapting to special needs and unexpected crises is what we’re used to.

How We Do It All

“Horizon is the oldest operating marine freight forwarder in the U.S., and arguably the world,” says Durante. “From day one of our 52 years of experience, our focus has always been marine. We started our service to cruise vessels in 2017 by flying a few cases of produce from the West Coast to Papeete, and it morphed from there. Once we demonstrated that we had the infrastructure and expertise to expedite shipments to a ship in the remote South Pacific, word got out and our business grew very quickly.

“All of what we do is very specialized,” he continues. “We’re dealing with thousands of cruise passengers weekly, their unique tastes in food, and all of the luxury or specialty items they require during their voyage. We have an amazing team that works their butts off. Everyone is highly intelligent, hard working. We simply wouldn’t be able to grow at the rate we’re growing if we didn’t have the best and most dedicated people working for us. You can have the best business model in the world, but you need the right people to run the show.”

Lucky for all of us, each day of servicing our cruise industry clients presents interesting new challenges that keep everyone intrigued. It’s invigorating to serve cruise vessels (and all our other clients) by getting them they need, when they need it, safely, cost-effectively, and on time. For more information about what our team can do for yours, contact us online or call directly at 800-221-6028.

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It’s been three years since the COVID-19 pandemic nearly brought the world to a standstill…

Horizon Air Freight and Swift Marine Merge, Creating a Marine Logistics Powerhouse

Together as One, Industry Leaders Will Extend Global Reach, Offer Unmatched Quality in Marine Logistics and Port Agency Service

Horizon Air Freight and Swift Marine announced today that they have entered a strategic business partnership and will unite as a single company, Horizon Group.  The new joint company will now offer a unique combination of marine logistics and port agency services in North America, South America, Asia, and Europe.

“Two great companies have become one for the betterment of our clients,” said Steve Leondis, CEO of Horizon Group. “Together, Horizon and Swift can offer the next level in service through an even larger, stronger network for our customers.”

“Together, Horizon and Swift can provide unmatched value for our customers,” said Nico Koumbatis, CEO of Swift Marine. “Our shared mission is to deliver everything they need to their ports of call while also managing the logistics along the way.”

The combined services following the partnership include:

  • Best in class customer experience from Port agency to logistics
  • Streamlined data communication and collaboration with all parties along the supply chain
  • High tech marine solutions and in-depth global knowledge of custom procedures arranging the last mile from port to vessel worldwide
  • White-glove port call service with talent on board to ensure customer success
  • Consolidation and freight forwarding of spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide
  • Port call agency services at more than 100 served ports in the Americas
  • Last mile services for more than 500 ports worldwide with an over 99% Global On Time Delivery Rate
  • Spares and supplies consolidation at Horizon Group’s 30+ global warehouses
  • Import and export documentation services
  • Customs pre-clearance for all inbound air and ocean shipments
  • Last-mile delivery services at any port of call

Horizon is a platform investment of ICV Partners, LLC.  Zeena Rao, a Managing Director of ICV Partners, said that Horizon and Swift make a formidable team. “It’s rare to find two companies with such consistent missions, visions, and values that put the customer first.  The combination of Horizon and Swift provides customers with best-in-class service and capabilities worldwide.”

Alongside Horizon’s acquisition with Transmarine Navigation and Delver Agents, the Horizon–Swift partnership solidifies the Horizon Group’s strength in Asia, Europe, and the Americas—underscoring their unique position as a one-stop solution for clients everywhere.

Existing customers of Horizon and Swift Marine can take advantage of the newly integrated services immediately by reaching out to their current account representatives. New customers can contact Horizon through or by calling 800-221-6028.

About Horizon Group

Horizon Group keeps fleets shipshape and on schedule with global marine logistics by air, land, and sea. Critical marine spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide: consolidated, expedited, delivered door to deck. Whatever you need, wherever you need it, we’ll get it there on time and on budget. With more than 50 years of experience, we keep more than 3,000 ships safe, able, and sailing.

About Swift Marine

Swift Marine Group is a dynamic organization with extensive experience in the complex world of marine logistics and forwarding. Leveraging its prowess as a frontrunner in IT innovation, Swift acts as a consolidated control tower for its large and diversified customer portfolio to streamline data communication and collaboration with all parties along the supply chain.

About ICV Partners

Founded in 1999, ICV Partners is a private investment firm that supports management leaders of strong lower middle market companies in pursuing growth.  The principals of ICV have crafted a strong track record of helping companies expand their footprint and improve performance over the long term.  Additional information is available at

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Signing a few last holiday cards…

Horizon Air Freight Announces Recent Acquisition of Transmarine Navigation Corporation

Q4 2022 Purchase Further Establishes Horizon as Leading International Port Agency and Comprehensive Marine Logistics Company

Horizon Air Freight announced today its recent acquisition of Transmarine Navigation Corporation, further establishing its leadership positions as an international port agency and customer-first logistics solution for ship owners, operators, and charters, making ports of call in North and South America.

Horizon CEO Steve Leondis said the transaction was completed in Q4 2022.

“In the spirit of Horizon and Transmarine, we began our partnership with a focus on our customers and the quality of our services,” he said. “Now it is time to share the big news with the public. Our acquisition of Transmarine allows us to better coordinate critical services for our customers’ vessels calling North and South America. Together, we’ll get everything they need to their ports of call and manage all their in-port logistics too, all with our shared commitment to excellence in the service of our customers. It’s a simpler and more streamlined solution for our clients, all provided by two companies the industry has trusted for generations.”

The combined services after the acquisition include:

  • Best-in-class customer experience in agency for North and South America
  • Best-in-class door-to-deck marine logistics solutions globally
  • White-glove port call service with talent on board to ensure customer success
  • Freight forwarding of spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide
  • Port call agency services at Transmarine’s 12 served ports along the Gulf Coast, West Coast, Hawaii, and Argentina
  • Spares and supplies consolidation at Horizon’s 30 global warehouses
  • Import and export documentation services
  • Last-mile delivery services at any port of call

Transmarine recently announced that Leslie Clements was stepping into the role of Managing Director, a position previously held by Jim Papp, who is assuming the role of Head of Strategic Ventures. Papp was instrumental in developing the partnership with Horizon.

“After nearly 40 years at the company, I can confidently say that there has never been a more exciting time to be a part of Transmarine,” Papp said. “A new ownership structure, combined with a great new leader in Leslie, will ensure that our best days are upon us.”

“It’s an honor to continue Transmarine and Horizon’s great work,” Clements said. “The new visionary leadership team, alongside the legacy of producing results for our clients, is the perfect combination.”

Existing customers of Horizon and Transmarine can take advantage of the newly integrated services immediately by reaching out to their current account representatives. New customers can contact Horizon through or by calling 800-221-6028.

About Horizon Air Freight 

Horizon Air Freight keeps fleets shipshape and on schedule with global marine logistics by air, land, and sea. Critical marine spares, supplies, and equipment from any vendor worldwide: consolidated, expedited, delivered door to deck. Whatever you need, wherever you need it, we’ll get it there on time and on budget. With more than 50 years of experience, we keep more than 3,000 ships safe, able, and sailing. To learn more about how Horizon and Transmarine’s combined services can help your fleet, call 800-221-6028 or visit

About Transmarine

Founded in 1938, Transmarine is a leading U.S. tramp ship agency, headquartered in Long Beach, California, and with offices in a dozen port cities along the Gulf Coast, West Coast, and Hawaii. The most prestigious firms in the shipping industry trust Transmarine to manage their port call operations with safety and efficiency. To learn more visit

True Heroes Do More Than Save the Day: How To Build an Epic Relationship with a Marine Logistics Partner

“During a shipping emergency, a freight forwarder frequently comes out looking like a real hero,” says Josh Roman, Chief Commercial Officer at Horizon Air Freight. “You put on your cape, move faster than a speeding bullet, leap over a few tall obstacles, and do what it takes to save the day.”

When such predicaments arise (and are then solved), the victories may be temporarily gratifying, but they can get expensive, to say the least. While a successful relationship with a marine logistics partner should certainly include the ability to handle emergencies, there’s so much more upon which a sustainable partnership is based.

“What happens every day, from the first mile to the last mile, is where the value is really delivered,” Roman explains. “Consider what’s being lost long-term when you’re jumping from crisis to crisis with different freight forwarders. Or even sticking with the same one in a never ending cycle of barely averted catastrophe, with no time to focus on sustainable success.”

When crucial minutes and tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars are on the line, you need someone who anticipates every detail and ensures it’s buttoned up before it becomes an emergency — no matter where you’re shipping, what you’re shipping, or how it has to get there. You need a stable partner who really knows not only your company, but the complexities of each shipment, the landscape of where it’s going, and the intricacies of getting it there quickly, safely, and cost-effectively.

“To gain all of the benefits long-term,” Roman insists, “Superman emergencies can’t be the only basis of your partnership. You need someone who can be your Clark Kent, too.”

So how do you cultivate a heroic relationship with a freight forwarding partner, beyond the thrill of crisis? In very similar ways you would for any fulfilling, long-term partnership.

Know Yourself and What You Need

In order to save yourself time, money, and potential heartache, first you need to know what you’re looking for. Carve out time to consider all your logistics needs, including locations, quality control, cost efficiencies, and even cultural or bureaucratic demands. Examine the full value a partner could provide in each department, beyond the shiny facet that seems to be demanding attention now.

Once you’ve looked closely at the ways in which a forwarder could add value to your company, set these expectations for yourself and evaluate your potential suitors to see what they can offer. Clearly understanding what you need most, and what they are able to give, will shape your entire partnership.

Communicate with Clarity — and Frequency

When you’ve defined what you’re looking for, communicate that clearly, and often. This includes what you’re seeking in the first interaction together.

“When you’re going out with someone,” Roman illustrates, “do you just say, ‘I’ll pick you up at 7:00,’ and go? Or is it better to define what you’ll both be doing? ‘Meet for coffee’ for example, is a lot different than ‘take in the symphony,’ or ‘split the bill at this Michelin restaurant.’” Defining how you will make your first interaction will set the table for you both, and will help your new logistics partner understand exactly how they can help you.

Then, during this initial “date” conversation (and even while setting it up), communicate clearly what will work best for you and your company long-term. Make sure your new partner agrees to and can fulfill these expectations. “Failure to communicate is often a failure,” Roman asserts. “Even and especially from the beginning.”

Remember too that good communication goes both ways. Be ready to share — and receive — feedback along the way. Plan for regular check-ins, not just during the first interaction but throughout your contract together. During these appointments, discuss not only where you succeeded and where improvements can be made, but key upcoming items including new company priorities, global trends, or staff changes.

The more you and your marine logistics partner can communicate with mutual honesty and respect, the longer-lasting the rewards of your partnership will be.

It’s Okay to Go Slow

Not ready for a full-scale commitment just yet? Find a partner who can meet a subset of your requests before going all-in. “At Horizon, we can handle shipments in say Japan or Europe first,” Roman recommends, “and then expand to another area, and another, until we’re handling all your shipments globally.”

By taking a phased approach, you can achieve good things in one area while working out any kinks. With continued communication along the way, before long you’ll be ready to conquer the world.

If you’re interested in starting a new relationship or expanding your current one with Horizon, contact us today to set up a conversation. We’ll take the time to learn the intricacies of what you need — and make recommendations based on what we hear from you — to guarantee your critical marine spares, supplies, and equipment are delivered from any vendor worldwide, wherever you need it, whenever you need it, on time and on budget.