Company profile

TLS was founded in 1948 for customs clearance, storage, weighing, sampling and forwarding of leaf tobacco of all origins.
The company's clientele soon grew beyond its founders and their businesses and has ever since included all leading cigarette manufacturers and most of the leading cigar manufacturers and Bremen based tobacco importers.

In 2003 TLS was bought by ESF Friedrich Ellmers Shipping and Forwarding GmbH, a privately owned shipping and forwarding company founded in 1856 with its head office in Bremen / Germany.

20.000 sqm of tobacco warehouse space belong to TLS and can be augmented by warehouse space owned by ESF. ESF has a global network of branch offices and agents which is available to TLS clients.


TLS forms part of ESF. ESF is an independent forwarding company without any ties to shipping companies or other carriers. TLS will, therefore, choose carriers solely considering the interests of its clients in respect of price, speed, reliability and other relevant service aspects.


As TLS is a specialised operation run by its private owners, communications and decision making are extremely quick in the company. A competent decision making person will always be available for you, and will receive binding answers very promptly.


The size of its operation enables TLS to adapt swiftly and flexibly to the individual needs of each client. No client is a number at TLS as might be the case with the big forwarding groups. Instead, he is a key account whether his enterprise is small, medium size or large.