Michael Symonanis

Louis Dreyfus

Director, Strategic Network

Michael Symonanis is the director, Strategic Network, for Louis Dreyfus Company's Global Container Logistics Group and previously worked with ocean carriers NOL and APL. Within the American Cotton Shippers Association (ACSA), Texas Cotton Association (TCA), and Agriculture Transportation Coalition (AgTC), Symonanis works on supply chain initiatives and policy focused on US agriculture export competitiveness with other shippers, suppliers, and stakeholders. He volunteers as vice chair, National Shipper Advisory Committee, supporting the Federal Maritime Commission. In these roles, he furthers LDC’s commitment to addressing industry and national opportunities and challenges led for so many years by his colleagues Sheila Bracken and the late Steve Wyman.

Sessions With Michael Symonanis

Tuesday, 1 March

  • 04:00pm - 04:45pm (EST) / 02/mar/2022 12:00 am - 02/mar/2022 12:45 am

    A New Era of Ocean Carrier Relationship Management: The Export View

    US exporters had a bittersweet year in 2021. Pandemic-induced congestion at US ports raised their profile like never before but at the expense of missed opportunities to ship goods to markets hungry for the range of US-made commercial and industrial products. Will the attention turn into substantive action, either through a change in the tenor of commercial relationships with shippers or the more heavy-handed approach of revisions to the US Shipping Act meant to protect US export interests? Time will tell. In the meantime, exporters are in the uncomfortable position of working with wildly profitable ocean carriers and trying to convince them to prioritize their lower-profit, backhaul cargo over cycling empty containers back to Asia as quickly as possible. The operational pressures on exporters are also numerous, from an inability to secure critical equipment and difficulty in scheduling appointments for laden export containers to shrinking earliest return and vessel cutoff windows. In this session, two experienced exporters will guide attendees on how to productively navigate this seemingly insurmountable set of challenges.  

  • 04:45pm - 05:30pm (EST) / 02/mar/2022 12:45 am - 02/mar/2022 01:30 am

    Shippers Sound Off: US Advisory Group Has the FMC’s Ear

    The new 24-member National Shipper Advisory Committee is the first of its kind for the Federal Maritime Commission, giving importers and exporters a louder and more direct voice in how regulators monitor and work to strengthen the industry. Hearing frustration from shippers about everything from service levels to data integrity, the FMC encouraged Congress to establish a vehicle to better keep importers and exporters front-and-center to their work. In this session, advisory committee members, coming from small, medium-sized, and large shippers of all kinds of goods and commodities will share what challenges they’re facing in their containerized supply chains and how that’s instructing their committee work in terms of the group’s priorities for 2022.