Founded in 2005, the days of Frankfurt-based ground handling firm CargoWorker 24 (CW-24) have ended. Now owner of the insolvent company is the fast growing European road network operator Sovereign. It’s the Hamburg-based “airline on wheels”-dubbed firm’s third acquisition this year.
How much this latest scoop has cost fast growing Sovereign is not disclosed, but it can be assumed that they paid a very modest price for getting the say at CargoWorker 24 since the handling agent and forwarder went broke last January.
CW-24 had Russian proprietors
Most likely, the strained relations between the west and Russia, particularly the former trading partner’s reciprocal embargo policy sent CW-24’s business south. This because Russian investors had put a lot of money into CargoWorker 24, in an attempt to capture growing shares of cargo handling activities in Frankfurt and – even more importantly – establish CW-24 as a leading operator for fast trucking air freight shipments between Rhine-Main airport and Moscow. This strategy went to ashes, after the formerly close trading relations between the EU and Russia were sharply reduced as reaction to the Kremlin’s illegal annexation of the Crimea peninsula in the Black Sea and the Moscow-initiated hybrid war in the eastern parts of the Ukraine.
To put it in a nutshell: CargoWorker 24 became a victim of the economic and political tensions between Russia and the West, leading to the insolvency of the agent last January.
Stepping out of handling services
An official statement from Sovereign was not obtainable as to what they plan with their latest acquisition and what exact role former CW-24 will play within Sovereign’s world. The good news is, claim internal sources, that the news owner will take over 45 of CargoWorker’s staff that once stood at 250, when the times were more prosperous.
It is also clear that Sovereign will discontinue all ground handling activities exercised by CW-24, that used to run a 22,000 sqm comprising warehouse within the CargoCity South, serving some prominent clients like Lufthansa Cargo, for instance. Instead, Sovereign will solely concentrate on shuttle services, thus distributing and re-positioning incoming and outgoing goods within Frankfurt’s cargo area. Around 90 percent of the 45 staff taken over from CW-24 are truck drivers.
By summarizing the above, it can be said that Sovereign’s newly established arm “Air Cargo Services” is growing very fast due to three takeovers that had been accomplished within no more than four months. Two of them, ths and CW-24 were bargain buys based on a reasonable price/performance ratio and predictable running costs. These acquisitions might not have been the company’s last scoop.