IN BRIEF, THE LATEST AIR FREIGHT INDUSTRY NEWS.
Precision delivers two B757-200PCFs
Precision Aircraft Solutions which has its base in Jacksonville, Florida, has delivered two Boeing 757-200 passenger-to-freighter (PCF) converted aircraft.
One, which is an ex-China Southern Airlines aircraft has gone to China Postal Services and will be used on Chinese regional routes. China Postal services has a further six more B757-200PCF conversions on order with Precision. Rumor has it however that the Chinese postal giant will probably take all thirteen B757-200 pax aircraft in China Southern’s fleet and have them converted.
Seems realistic seeing that China Southern has a 49% holding in China Postal.
This conversion follows hot on the heels of another B747 conversion the carrier received lately from Hong Kong’s HAECO (CargoForwarder Global 24 October).
The second delivery by Precision went to DHL Express who it seems also has quite a large order book with Precision for B757 conversions in order to replace their very old aircraft of the same type.
Russia’s Sky Gates Airlines starts operations
Who would have thought that another Russian freight carrier would take to the skies?
Sky Gates Airlines has commenced operations with their first B747-400F on the sector Maastricht-Baku-Moscow and plans are for four weekly rotations.
Interestingly, the flights are operated on an ACMI basis by Azerbaijan-based Silk Way West Airlines.
Sky Gates management state that a second 747F is expected to join the fleet in the first months of 2017.
Saudia Cargo gives back a B747-400F
Air Atlanta Icelandic was forced to take back a B747-400F which they had leased to Saudia Cargo because the aircraft is more than twenty years old.
Saudia government regulations forbid the country’s carriers to operate aircraft in their airspace which are more than 20 years old.
Saudia still operates four or five freighters which should have been returned to their lessors due to age. The carrier is replacing elderly aircraft with more modern B747-8Fs and B777Fs.
IAG Cargo adds New Orleans to the network
As of March 2017 British Airways will start a new service from London Heathrow to New Orleans utilizing a Boeing 787-8 passenger aircraft.
This new route enable IAG Cargo to offer the only direct service from London to the U.S. city.
The four weekly flights will offer belly capacity of up to 15 tonnes per flight in temperature controlled holds.
David Shepherd, Commercial Director of IAG Cargo comments that “this new route will add to our strong network offering in North America giving local businesses a valuable connection to global markets.”
CEVA Logistics appoints new CFO
Peter Waller has been appointed as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for CEVA Logistics.
Mr Waller will succeed Arjan Kaaks who has decided to leave CEVA in order to pursue other opportunities.
Peter Waller was previously Group CEO of Eurofins Scientific and had also spent eight years with the Thomas Cook Group in London and Frankfurt where he also held the CFO position.
Xavier Urbain, CEO at CEVA commented that “we are delighted that Peter is joining CEVA. His strong commercial and strategic financial expertise and leadership skills make him an excellent fit for CEVA.”
London Heathrow to get its third runway
Finally, the UK government has given its approval for the construction of a third runway at the country’s busiest airport, London Heathrow.
Heathrow, one of the world’s busiest airports presently only has two runways and take-off queuing times during peak periods often lead to long waiting times before aircraft can be cleared to depart. This is costing on fuel as well as delaying flights.
The decision, which was taken last week, will now go forward in the form of a so-called “National Policy Statement” for further consultation.
Some aviation managers are hoping that the actual realization of the project won’t get bogged down in what they feel would be unnecessary discussions.
The airport authority claims that the new third runway would generate up to 77,000 new jobs in the area during the coming fourteen years.
Air Charter Service records a good first half year
The UK-based Air Charter Service (ACS) which specializes in both passenger and cargo charters, has recorded a bumper first half year result.
A total of 5,800 charter contracts were signed by the company up until July 31st. This represents a 9% growth over the same period last year.
ACS was founded in 1990, has around 20 offices worldwide and employs 350 staff.
Annual revenues are said to be in the region of between $450 - 500 million.
The U.S. west coast harbour strike, which lasted for three weeks, also helped boost ACS’s revenues whereby the company was able to organize various B747 freighter flights to carry cargo.
The largest project in the first half-year was the organization of the Iron Maiden pop group’s world tour whereby the group’s own B747-400 aircraft was utilized for 48 flights carrying passengers and cargo in the form of the Iron Maiden group equipment.
Cargolux new in Oslo
Beginning tomorrow (1 November), Luxembourg’s flag carrier will commence flying to Oslo, Norway. The weekly operated Boeing 747-8F services take from New York (JFK) to Oslo and on to Luxembourg Findel. According to the carrier, the inaugural flight will carry a load of salmon that will be distributed to various CV destinations after being transited in Findel from the incoming flight to outgoing services.
The Oslo service caters to the air freight needs of Norwegian shippers, reads a CV release.
Besides seafood, the Cargolux managers also expect to carry shipments for the oil and gas industry on the US – Norway – Luxembourg route.
John Mc Donagh