The figures achieved in the first half of 2014 look very promising. 2014 could become the best year ever in the 10 year history of the carrier should sanctions imposed on Russia by the west not torpedo this perspective.
ABC (AirBridge Cargo) transported exactly 188,354 tons of cargo during the first six months of 2014, up remarkable 16 percent on the previous year. The growth reflects the airline’s strong market
positioning on the routes linking major cargo destinations in Asia, Europe and North America. Freight ton-kilometres increased in the aforementioned period by 19%, exceeding the industry average
growth of 4.4%.
In a release ABC emphasizes that the carrier continued outperforming the market in terms of its average load factor that averaged 72 percent network wide. This compares to the industry’s meagre average of 45% percent worldwide during this year’s first five months.
From January until today, ABC further extended its international network and strengthened its position on existing markets. In the U.S., the carrier added a second new route to Dallas /Fort Worth and also increased frequencies to Chicago. In Europe, ABC commenced serving Leipzig, Malmo and Munich and started flying from Frankfurt to Chicago enabled by fifth freedom traffic rights. The frequencies on this weekly flown route will be upped to two and eventually three in the near future, announced an ABC executive without delivering specifics.
Particularly the Munich flight is running well and much supported by the local cargo community. “We are more than satisfied and hope for a second weekly flight operated by the airline,” states MUC’s Head of Cargo Sales and Development, Markus Heinelt.
New destinations added to the network together with improved connectivity at the airline’s Moscow hub resulted in faster flow of goods. This enables ABC to offer its international clients a delivery time of less than 48 hours on almost all of the airline’s origin-destination pairs. As result the “Delivered-as-Promised” index remained staying at above 80 percent.
ABC says that its focus on developing the home market and attracting more import traffic into Russia resulted in a 13% growth in tonnage on its routes to Russia in the first six months of 2014. The highest growth was generated on routes from Asia and North America with 29% and 23% growth respectively. The total volume of imports carried by ABC into Russia increased to 42,676 tons during the half-year.
Denis Ilin, Executive President of AirBridge Cargo Airlines commented: “The challenges which the global air cargo market continues to face have not held back ABC’s development. We have achieved our goals for the first half of the year and lay down ambitious plans for the second half of 2014, which will include launching of more new routes and increasing our frequencies on a number of existing routes, as well as growing our fleet.” The manager went on to say: “We will surely keep focus on our home market, not only by developing additional import business to Russia but also by launching domestic routes using the Boeing 737 freighter fleet of Atran Airlines, another part of Volga-Dnepr Group.”
Shouldn’t any political hurdles hamper the carrier’s upswing in the coming months Ilin expects that total tonnage carried by the line-haul subsidiary of Moscow-headquartered Volga-Dnepr Group will exceed 400,000 tons.