Aircargopedia Newsblast: May 2017!
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20th MAY 2017  

Dear Air Cargo Professional:

For those of you who were in Munich this month, I am sure that you all agree unanimously on one thing, viz. that the Transport & Logistics show, organized by Messe München, which includes Air Cargo Europe, is undoubtedly the greatest transportation show on earth. This show covers all the bases in the transportation chain, air, land and sea, as well as logistics and technology. The Germans have the business of organizing trade shows in their DNA, and around two thirds of the world’s leading trade fairs take place in Germany, providing a regular conduit around the world for the trade of goods and services.
  DJ Ghosh

With between nine and ten million visitors interacting with 170,000 exhibitors at 150 international trade shows and exhibitions, Germany takes the No.1 spot for hosting international trade shows. It has 22 major trade fair venues, three of the five largest exhibition centers and four of the ten highest performing trade organizers based there. At German trade fairs, half of the exhibitors come from other countries, and a third from countries outside Europe. The Germans are great trade show organizers and they understand the business of not only producing top quality products but also showcasing them for the whole world to see.

Air Cargo Europe sold out long before the exhibition doors opened for business; so much so, that the organizers are now planning for more space at the next event. Almost everyone that I met at the show marveled at the ability of Messe München to attract such a high level of participation and were gratified at the new contacts made and the old ones re-established. Major deals were struck, and announcements made. Many of my colleagues in the press agreed that the big newsmaker was the tie-up between Emirates and Cargolux as they use each other’s capacity on a global basis. At the pharma workshop organized by Air Cargo News, delegates were told about the steady 4-5% growth in pharma, with ‘cool pharma’ growing while ‘non-cool pharma’ was declining. IAG Cargo’s Alan Dorling stressed the need to reduce tarmac exposure while investing in temperature controlled warehouses and cargo holds, and global networks with excellent connectivity. Andreas Sahli, Global Head of Healthcare at Panalpina spoke about training to bring organizations upto speed on GDP. Turhan Ozen, Head of Turkish Cargo talked about making the supply chain fully integrated with full end to end visibility and compliance, calling for a ‘solution design’ specially tailored for pharma shippers. An ardent proponent of value creation, this former forwarder emphasized that at the end of the day, this is a people business, and the goal and challenge is to create value for the shippers who pay the bill.

Air Cargo Europe 2017

As they say in America, there is no business-like show business. The memories of Munich are so great that we yearn for a show such as this to go on and on. Two years is a long time to wait to see so many people in one place again. With travel budgets limited and workloads increasing, how do we connect with each other in the interim. I believe that the answer is through technology and through an online 24/7 e-platform where vendors can showcase their products and services on a year-round basis for the whole world to see. Therefore, we conceived of as not only an online air cargo encyclopedia but also as an ongoing e-platform where air cargo vendors can showcase their products and services, and buyers can visit at their convenience in their own time zones. If you like the idea, let us know. We want to hear from you and we want you on board.

LUFTHANSA CARGO: The Germans are not only great trade show organizers, but also great hosts. It was no wonder that the Lufthansa stand at Air Cargo Europe was continuously mobbed with trade show visitors eager to regale themselves while conducting business deals. At a press dinner on the second day of the show, we learnt from Peter Gerber and Alexis Von Hoensbroech of Lufthansa Cargo’s management team that while their cargo department lost money in 2016, the tide seemed to have turned in 2017 aided partly by a spike in air freight volumes caused by a disruption in sea trade. Lufthansa Cargo has prepared itself for the ups and downs of the air cargo business, putting in place a much leaner corporate structure. They continue to push the case for digitization to reduce the huge amounts of inefficiency and embedded cost in the system, while expanding their global reach through partnerships with United Airlines and Cathay Pacific.

Air Cargo Europe 2017
Munich 2017 Jan Krems and Tim Strauss

UNITED AIRLINES & AIR CANADA: I also found time in Munich to say hello to Jan Krems of United Airlines, while congratulating Tim Strauss on his appointment as head of cargo at Air Canada.

CNS CONFERENCE ORLANDO: I was among the 600 air cargo professionals who flew to Orlando to attend CNS’s Annual Partnership conference. Among other things, CNS is well known as a meeting place for airlines and forwarders where a lot of business is discussed and agreements reached behind closed doors. It is also a conference where new ideas are introduced. This year’s event had Ryan Petersen, CEO of FLEXPORT as a keynote speaker with his mantra to unite the human population in a seamless web of commerce, and make trade so easy that everybody can participate. FLEXPORT is a 4-year-old technology and data-driven freight forwarder and customs broker, providing a web-based app that offers real-time visibility of your shipments. With a tech savvy management team, they have raised over $94 million in venture capital to build the international logistics platform of the future. According to Ryan, the problem was the series of handoffs in the transportation chain, with their corresponding gaps of information, which could become more seamless with the use of the internet to link the movement of cargo. However, there are significant barriers to entry for new forwarders with global aspirations. Most of the world’s 24 major forwarders were founded before the advent of NETSCAPE and their combined revenue is close to US$100 billion. They have a global footprint and large purchasing power. He believes that technology can be the disrupter that can scale your business and re-define price and service. His software called SLACK, will allow individual software to talk to other software to make better decisions.

Also, discussed at CNS was the possible privatization of the Air Traffic Control(ATC) in the USA, a move supported by the new president Donald Trump. According to Rebecca Macpherson of Jones Day, most countries have moved to privatized Air Traffic Control and this appears to have worked quite well, especially for safety. However, the fear is that mainline carriers might have too much influence in the day to day administration of the ATC, while cargo carriers could end up paying more in charges and fees because of the penalty for aircraft based on weight. There is also a re-think in the new administration on the open skies agreements that the US had entered into in the past; with the largest three American carriers complaining to the DOT about unfair subsidies provided to Middle East carriers by their respective governments. These included interest free loans, loan guarantees, artificially low airport charges, prohibiting the formation of labor organizations, and exempting carriers from tax and competition laws.

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In the panel on the ‘Future of sea freight and its impact on Air Cargo’, Michael Looten, Director, Maritime at the Seabury Group, stated that while container shipping is growing and vessels are becoming larger, the capacity is outstripping demand, and even with scrapping of capacity, profitability of shipping lines has significantly decreased over the last five years, with ‘Return on Invested Capital’(ROIC) a mere 2.1%. Larger shipping lines like Maersk and CGM continue to outperform their smaller rivals in general. He predicts that only 12 container shipping lines will be left next year, and ships will continue to get bigger, since operating a 14,000 TEU vessel is not much different from operating a 21,000 TEU ship.

In the session on ‘The changing landscape of cargo’, Brian Clancy, Managing Director of Logistics Strategy stressed the need to differentiate the air cargo market from the air package market. The air package market is based on a different distribution model, where cargo goes from production center to the customer bypassing the traditional distribution models. He pointed out that 23% of air cargo demand is packages, and 90% is transported by integrators such as FedEx, UPS or DHL. However, the integrators are stuck with high costs. If the air cargo industry wants to seize the opportunity provided by e-commerce, they need ‘an e-commerce playbook’ where air cargo is a much cheaper value proposition.

I was an active and enthusiastic participant in the session on ‘Enhancing performance through innovation’ lead by Ariaen Zimmerman, Executive Director of CARGO IQ, where he discussed how to turn data into information, and sell products according to studied parameters of performance through data analytics. I asked Ariaen that if data analytics could differentiate products through pre-determined performance parameters, should the industry not be able to charge higher revenue premiums for products that ‘outperformed’ their peers, based on validated test results. Also, if this data could be integrated with a revenue management platform could we not then have the advent of an industry wide ‘dynamic pricing revenue model’. Something to think about.

After a hiatus of many years, and at the invitation of the President Stan Bernstein I rejoined the annual conference of the Regional Air Cargo Carriers Association of America(RACCA) in Scottsdale, Arizona. Formed in 2002, RACCA is the only organization dedicated to meeting the policy, communication and information needs of on-demand cargo aircraft operators in the United States. More than 50 FAA-certificated air carriers are regular members, and many of them operate on behalf of FedEx or UPS to smaller stations around the country. While most RACCA members are certificated by the FAA to operate under Part 135 of the regulations, the association also has several Part 121 carriers. During the event, I had a chance to chat with Tim Komberec, President & CEO of Empire Airlines and Chairman of the RACCA board about the looming pilot shortage and the reluctance of young blood to come into the industry. According to him, even though pilot wages are not an issue, selling a pilot career to a young man or woman has become increasingly challenging. It has not helped, that the crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 on February 12, 2009, triggered a wave of inquiries into the operations of regional airlines in the United States, while increasing the number of additional hours of flight time to qualify for a pilot’s license. According to Steve Alterman, President of the Cargo Airline Association, whose members include heavyweights such as UPS, FedEx, Atlas, ABX, DHL and Amazon, if the Air Traffic Control is spun off as an independent entity, with funding by user fees based on weight and distance, air cargo costs could go up by 40-80%. With an aging pilot population and negative perceptions about the safety of flying regional cargo aircraft, one must wonder what is next. Even though this was not openly discussed at the conference it now seems natural to open a discussion about drones and unmanned cargo aircraft. Let us see what happens next.

Have a great summer.

Best wishes

D.J. Ghosh
President & Publisher
”The Complete Encyclopedia for the Air Cargo Professional & Investor”


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dnata commences cargo operations in the USA with investments in Houston and Dallas

Dubai UAE: 10 May 2017

dnata announced today it has reached an agreement with Lynx Holdings LP to acquire its AirLogistix USA cargo handling operations at George Bush Intercontinental Airport Houston (IAH) in the USA.

The 30,000 sq ft facility includes the only dedicated perishable cargo facility at Houston airport. This state-of-the-art cargo handling centre is suitable for all perishable products including pharmaceuticals, fruits, vegetables, fish and flowers, and further establishes dnata as a global leader in perishable cargo handling.

In 2016, over 16,000 tonnes of perishable cargo were handled from this warehouse. In addition to this, the facility also has capacity to handle up to 20,000 tonnes of regular air cargo.

As part of this transaction, AirLogistix USA and dnata have committed to open a similar facility at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) in summer 2017. This second facility will be 37,000 sq ft, again including a dedicated perishables handling facility.

dnata in US

“Our strategy is to offer the highest level of service in each market we operate”, said Stewart Angus, dnata’s Divisional Senior Vice President of International Airport Operations. “The AirLogistix USA operation fits the bill and will further enhance our growing international cargo network. This represents dnata’s first step into the US cargo market. We look forward to working with the Houston and Dallas Fort Worth Airports to support continued growth at these important airports,” he added.

“Having started the company from the concept of service excellence, I am delighted that AirLogistix USA will now be part of the dnata team” said Ray Brimble, AirLogistix USA founder and owner. “I am passing AirLogistix USA into good hands. dnata’s commitment to service and safety at the highest standards and its continued investment in its product is in line with our philosophy, and ensures our customers will continue to receive the quality service they expect."

dnata has continued to significantly expand its global cargo offering, including the opening of 18 new cargo facilities in the past five years. With the investments in Houston and Dallas Fort Worth, dnata now handles over 2.8 million tonnes of cargo at 42 airports worldwide.

The experienced management team, including President Kerry Galegher, will remain in place. Employee terms and conditions will also remain unchanged.

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Lufthansa Cargo and Jettainer renew contract

Frankfurt, 10 May 2017

Jettainer, the leading international service partner for outsourced ULD management, will continue to handle the management and maintenance of the Unit Load Devices (ULDs) for Lufthansa Cargo in future too. The extended contract runs until 31 December 2021.

Lufthansa and Jettainer

The introduction of new lightweight containers to the Lufthansa Cargo fleet will continue. This means that Lufthansa Cargo will have access to one of the most eco-friendly lower-deck ULD fleets in the world and this will also play a role in reducing CO2 emissions in global aviation.

“Jettainer’s innovative capabilities, as illustrated by the ongoing development of ULDs, but also in its award-winning decision support system, give us a crucial competitive advantage from many points of view. This makes Jettainer into a strategically important service partner for us,” says Dr. Jan-Wilhelm Breithaupt, Vice President Global Handling Management at Lufthansa Cargo.

“We’re working hard to make things smarter – in all respects: whether this involves smarter accounting systems, smart management for our ULD fleet or even smarter containers – and we’re delighted to be able to offer our best services to Lufthansa Cargo in particular,” says Carsten Hernig, Managing Director of Jettainer.

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South African Airways Cargo wins the Best Cargo Airline - Africa

Johannesburg, 11 May 2017

South African Airways Cargo (SAA Cargo) is proud to have bagged another international award within a short space of time at the 2017 Air Cargo Airline of the Year awards hosted by Air Cargo News. SAA Cargo was voted Best Cargo Airline-Africa by the readers of Air Cargo News.

The awards are an annual gala event where the air cargo industry gathers to recognise the very best of the industry across 14 categories.

The airfreight industry awards were hosted by British television, stage and film comedian Stephen Mangan. It was attended by more than 300 industry professionals who had flown in from all over the world to attend the ceremony, held at the Lancaster London Hotel.

“We are very proud to have won the award. It is more so because it is a vote of confidence from the air cargo industry,” said Mr Tleli Makhetha, SAA Cargo’s General Manager.

The airline awards are based on the voting results of more than 18,000 supply chain professionals over a two-month period. Shippers, the beneficial owners of the goods, and their logistics partners were asked to vote on the publication’s website for the airline that provided the best overall customer experience and for the best service provider in each region.

Air Cargo News Editor Roger Hailey remarked: “It is a night of worthy winners, and a great social occasion that brought together so many industry friends who work together in partnership to make air cargo the key enabler of economic growth worldwide. Congratulations to all those who have won an award. You are a credit to the industry.”

Mr Makhetha said: “We are very happy with this recent achievement as it comes at the back of the Air Cargo Brand of the Year in Africa Award we bagged in February this year. We are inspired to work harder to ensure that our customers’ needs are prioritised. Thank you to everyone who voted for us and for your continued support.”

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New appointments to the CNS Advisory Board of Directors

15 May, 2017 (Miami, Fla)

Cargo Network Services Corp. (CNS) announced appointments to the CNS Advisory Board of Directors that will ensure continuity in the Advisory Board’s mission to provide guidance and advice in support of CNS’s activities and goals.

Brandon Fried, Executive Director of the Airforwarders Association was named Chairman, succeeding Mick Fountain, President and CEO Americas, Toll Global Forwarding, who previously announced he would step down after many years of service to the Board. Greg Weigel, Executive Vice President, Global Operations, AIT Worldwide Logistics, Inc. was named Deputy Chairman. Weigel succeeds Bob Kmiotek, Vice President, Carrier Procurement Americas, DHL Global Forwarding, who also decided to retire from the Board after an extensive time of service.

Also joining the Advisory Board are:
• Rick Elieson, President, American Airlines Cargo
• Tim Strauss, Vice President Cargo, Air Canada
• Jose Ubeda, Senior Vice President, Expeditors International
• Mike Duffy, CEO The Americas, Worldwide Flight Services
• Joe Napoli, Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor, Miami-Dade Aviation Department (MIA)

“I would like to congratulate Brandon and Greg on their appointments to the leadership of the CNS Advisory Board and thank Mick and Bob for their many years of excellent service to the air cargo industry while on the CNS Advisory Board. I would also like to welcome all of our new members. The CNS Advisory Board plays a vital role in guiding CNS’s activities and priorities. In doing so, it helps to ensure that the air cargo industry becomes more productive, creates greater value for customers and remains highly relevant to the needs of shippers,” said Lionel van der Walt, CNS’s President.

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Emirates SkyCargo widens offerings for pharma customers

DUBAI, U.A.E., 15 May 2017

Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates, has increased the range of solutions available to its pharma customers by entering into agreements for global container rental services with two leading players in the market: SkyCell and va-Q-tec, in addition to its existing cooperation with Envirotainer. The agreements allow Emirates SkyCargo to offer its customers a variety of specialised temperature controlled containers for the transportation of pharmaceutical or life sciences products.

Emirates SkyCargo’s customers can have temperature sensitive pharma and life sciences products shipped using one of SkyCell’s temperature controlled containers. The Swiss made containers are designed to maintain products at +2°C to +8°C and +15°C to +25°C safely even under extreme outside temperatures such as –35°C to +65°C for several days. The patented containers use innovative material technology to recharge in Emirates SkyCargo’s cool chain network thus enabling “door to door” for a closed supply chain and have close to real time temperature monitoring capability.

Pharma customers across Emirates SkyCargo’s global network of 155 destinations can now also choose to have their temperature sensitive shipments transported in va-Q-tainer’ containers - advanced passive containers providing temperature controlled solutions for six temperature ranges from -70°C to +25°C in extreme ambient conditions. ‘va-Q-tainer’ rental containers are available in 5 different sizes taking up to two US pallets inside and offer constant and deviation-free temperature control for several days without using external energy sources.


Emirates SkyCargo’s agreements with SkyCell and va-Q-tec supplement its existing in-house pharma offerings which include the Emirates SkyPharma Cool Dolly which transports cargo from aircraft to storage areas in Dubai maintaining temperatures as low as -20°C and the ‘White Container’- a special container coated with insulators to counteract high external temperatures, giving customers a wide variety of transportation options for their pharma shipments.

In 2016, Emirates SkyCargo launched Emirates SkyPharma- the air cargo carrier’s complete solution for transporting temperature sensitive pharmaceutical shipments. The carrier also inaugurated a brand new, state of the art facility at Dubai International Airport dedicated to the transport of pharmaceuticals. Emirates SkyCargo operates the world’s largest multi-airport hub certified for EU Good Distribution Practice Guidelines (GDP) for medicinal products for human use by Bureau Veritas Germany. This covers the carrier’s pharma transport operations at its Emirates SkyCentral terminals in Dubai World Central (DWC), Dubai International Airport (DXB) and the 24/7 bonded trucking service that connects the cargo between them.

Emirates SkyCargo is the largest international cargo airline in the world operating a modern fleet of 259 aircraft including 15 freighters- 13 Boeing 777-Fs and two B747-400ERFs.

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Benoît Dumont appointed as new CEO - Dr. Ludwig Bertsch to join the Board of Directors

15 May 2017

Unilode Aviation Solutions, the leading global provider of outsourced ULD management and repair solutions, announces that Benoît Dumont has been appointed new CEO with the current President and CEO Dr. Ludwig Bertsch joining the Board of Directors; both effective as of 1 September 2017.

Benoît Dumont is an international and multicultural leader with a wide blend of skills from strategy development to operational/line responsibility in complex and service-related businesses. He worked several years for McKinsey & Company focusing on the transport and logistics sector. He then joined DHL Express Europe in 2004 and DHL Supply Chain EMEA in 2009, where he held the positions of Director of Operations, Managing Director, Senior VP of Operations, and most recently CEO Germany, Alps & Nordics. In these positions, Benoît Dumont implemented new commercial strategies, performance management and engagement models, and achieved significant revenue growth.

Benoit Dumont

Dr. Ludwig Bertsch commented: "I have been engaged with the Company over the past 17 years since we pioneered the ULD pooling concept within Swissair in 2000. I am very proud of this multinational organisation that we have built together over the years and I feel this is the right time to transition to the next generation of leadership. I am very pleased that we have found such a high calibre successor and am absolutely confident that Benoît is the right person to lead the Company forward into its next phase under EQT Infrastructure's ownership. I will continue to be involved with the Company as a non-executive board member. I want to thank our great teams around the world as well as our customers for their support, confidence and trust and I will certainly miss the inspirational work environment that we have created together."

Benoît Dumont said: "I am both honoured and excited by the opportunity to take on the CEO role at Unilode. Ludwig and the management team have executed a strategy that has positioned the Company well for continued success and I am committed to capturing the enormous opportunities in front of us. I look forward to working with everyone at Unilode and leading the Company into the next growth phase while continuously improving the services to our customers."

Peter Nilsson, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Unilode, added: "On behalf of the board and everyone at Unilode, I thank Ludwig for his leadership, commitment and dedication throughout his tenure as President and CEO and look forward to benefiting from his experience in the board. Ludwig has been a true visionary who brought Unilode to where it is today, and set the stage for the great business opportunities that lie ahead. Ludwig laid a solid foundation for his successor and with Benoît we have found a proven leader with the right mix of expertise, leadership skills and operational capabilities to bring Unilode to the next level."

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MIAMI, May 10, 2017

Maurice Jenkins, Director of Information Systems and Telecommunications for the Miami-Dade Aviation Department, ranked among the world’s top 10 airport industry figures “who have displayed an outstanding dedication to using new and emerging technologies to enhance overall passenger experiences and business performance,” according to the recently released 2017 Future Travel Experience Airport Innovation Power List.

According to FTE, each member of the Power List was selected based on a variety of factors, including: use of technology to improve the passenger experience; use of technology to enhance business performance and operational efficiency; use of technology to personalize the customer experience; dedication to being a first mover to explore the viability of new and emerging technologies; and dedication to going the extra mile to deliver improvements for other stakeholders and the wider industry. In order to qualify for the Power List, individuals must be a C-level executive and ultimately be responsible for technological and/or digital innovation at their airport.

Most notable among Jenkins’ achievements in 2016 was the launch of MIA’s upgraded mobile app, MIA Airport Official 2.0. With the help of more than 500 Bluetooth data beacons installed throughout MIA, travelers can now use the app to scan their boarding pass and immediately receive turn-by-turn, blue-dot navigation with estimated walk times, real-time flight updates, and shopping and dining suggestions nearby based on their customizable personal profile. MIA is one of only a handful of airports in the world to incorporate beacon technology with its mobile app to provide this cutting-edge, personalized travel experience. The app has more than 165,000 downloads to date.

The next version of the mobile app is expected to include notifications for special offers from the user’s preferred shops, restaurants and service providers at MIA, the ability to reserve parking, and estimated security checkpoint wait times.

“The FTE Airport Innovation Power List is well-deserved recognition for Maurice’s hard work and outstanding commitment to innovation – one of our airport’s most critical core values,” said Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio T. González. “Thanks to his efforts, MIA is leveraging technology like never before to improve our passenger experience.”

Jenkins’ top 10 Power List ranking comes six months after another major accolade for MIA’s innovative initiatives. In October, MIA was selected by the Airport Innovation Accelerator – an aviation industry community established by the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) – to receive the organization’s inaugural Airport Innovation Award, in recognition of creative projects like MIA Airport Official 2.0 that improve the passenger experience.

Future Travel Experience (FTE), established in 2006, is an independent events and online media business dedicated to improving the end-to-end passenger experience. Having started with a standalone event in North America, FTE now hosts four annual events around the world – FTE Global, FTE Asia EXPO, FTE Europe and FTE Ancillary. FTE is produced by PPS Publications, a specialist air transport publisher and event organizer based near London Gatwick Airport in the United Kingdom.

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