CGN Cargo Center out for Tender

The day has finally arrived whereby Cologne-Bonn Airport officially confirms that its cargo handling operation has been put out to tender.
The tender, which has been published in the EU’s Official European Gazette on 3 April of this year, is open until mid-July and it is expected that the airport’s Board of Directors will take a decision as to the new investor by the end of the year.

The extension of the cargo facilities is a clear signal for CGN’s commitment in air freight, states CEO Michael Garvens  /  source: hs
The extension of the cargo facilities is a clear signal for CGN’s commitment in air freight, states CEO Michael Garvens / source: hs

CargoForwarder Global reported earlier this year that the airport management was seriously considering divesting itself of the cargo handling operation and that an adequate investor was being sought.

The CBCC, as it is called has quite a successful history and has been expanding its operations step by step for the past few years.
The present cargo handling area, which was erected in 2009, consists of a total of 12,000 sqm and was conceived as a multifunctional cargo area for freight agents, airlines and logistics enterprises.
In other words, it can be used both as a normal freight handling area as well as air cargo online handling.

The six page tender document states that the airport is on the lookout for an investor who will take over and run the present facilities at “Cologne Bonn Cargo Center” as well as the general cargo handling and also confirms its firm intention to invest in and erect and run a new handling facility due to the fact that the present premises have reached their capacity limit.
The new cargo warehouse is planned at 10,000 sqm plus office space and is slated to be used solely for airfreight.

Michael Garvens, CGN’s CEO stated that: “we see the expansion of the airfreight area as a clear signal for the necessary development of airfreight at Cologne-Bonn airport.”

Franz van Hessen manages the air freight biz at CGN
Franz van Hessen manages the air freight biz at CGN

The big question remains - which type of investor is presently in the sidelines and waiting and willing to take over the present premises as well as putting a double-digit euro figure into the extension.
The decision as whether the new investor will enter the arena as owner, renter or on a “hereditary lease” basis is left open in the tender document. As a further part of the deal it would be agreed that the Cologne-Bonn Airport would remain on site for a certain period of time as a so called “sub-contractor.”
The agreement would run for a period of 25 years.

The above mentioned deadline is quite tight, considering summer vacation periods and the fact that all of the present airport shareholders, which include the city of Cologne and the state of North-Rhine-Westphalia, must all be of one mind and sign off on the new operator.
Getting all of these factions to agree on an investor might take more time than the deadline set until the end of this year.

The CGN cargo operation has proven its worth during the past years and with the integrators as a stable backbone can be in a position to expand even further by adding another cargo facility.
We wish the CGN CGO team lots of luck.

John Mc Donagh