PORTRAIT - Globe Air Cargo - MG Retires, MB Takes Over

Globe Air Cargo, the long standing GSA for various airlines in Germany and which is based near Frankfurt Airport and is a 100 percent daughter of the Paris based ECS Group will initiate a changeover of its German management on 1. April.

Martin Bittner (pictured left) took over from Mark Grinsted at GSA Globe Air Cargo  -  photo: hs
Martin Bittner (pictured left) took over from Mark Grinsted at GSA Globe Air Cargo - photo: hs

A 25-year success story
The company which later became Globe Air Cargo started up in 1992 and from 2002 was steered and headed for many years by Heiner Sass who step by step built the company within a few years into a well recognised air cargo General Sales Agency.
It was in the same year 2002 that Globe was purchased by European Cargo Services (ECS) and since then has expanded even further.
In the meantime, Globe represents almost twenty different airlines in Germany for cargo sales and the list is expected to grow further during the coming years.

Over the years Globe Air Cargo has expanded from its originating office in Moerfelden-Walldorf, near Frankfurt Airport and has added sales outlets in Berlin, Stuttgart, Hamburg, Dusseldorf and Munich.
It is interesting to note that many of the staff who were on board from day one, are still working for Globe.

The management handover on 1. April this year went, as expected, very smoothly as both Mark Grinsted as outgoing M.D. and Martin Bittner as the new manager, have paved the way for a smooth transition during the past couple of months.

MG goes into retirement
Mark Grinsted has spent the past 14 years working for Globe Air Cargo.
He was for many years the right-hand man to Heiner Sass and it was thanks to his sharp analytical thinking, that Globe was within a short period of time able to present future clients with sales processes which were not only new but also gave clients savings in many areas.

Mark who is a UK citizen and who studied at Cambridge University has been in Germany since 1971 and can look back on a successful air cargo career in this country.
He started his career in 1971 with Lufthansa and worked there until 1974 before joining Air Canada’s cargo team.
In 1976 he made a move into the freight agents’ scene by joining Danzas. He started his almost 17 year career there as Export Manager Frankfurt  and then moved on to become Danzas Operations & Consolidation Manager for Germany until 1989, followed by 3 years as the German IT Manager for Danzas Air.
Then, in 1992 it was back to the airline business when he joined up with Heiner Sass at Martinair Holland Cargo as Cargo Sales Manager for Central Europe.
It was in 2002 that Mark then re-joined Heiner who was already starting up Globe’s activities in Germany. He took up the position of Commercial Director which he held until 2015 when he was appointed as Managing Director.

Mark goes into well-earned retirement, but will not be sitting down for long as one of his future aims is to research local history and “play with computers.”
MB takes over
Where Mark Grinsted leaves off, Martin Bittner takes over.
He joined Globe Air Cargo in JAN 2017 and has spent the past months working alongside Mark Grinsted in order to pave the way for him to take over the M.D. position.
Martin is also no stranger to the world of air cargo.
He was born in Minnesota USA, where he grew up and stayed through University until he joined Lufthansa‘s Management Program in 1990.  Martin‘s first position at Lufthansa in Miami was responsibility for Sales and Marketing for South and Central America, and later as General Manager New England for Lufthansa Cargo. He then moved on to Air Canada Cargo in 2000 with assignments in Chicago, Frankfurt and in Toronto. He was with the Canadian national carrier for a total of ten years before going to Expeditors in 2011 where he held the position of Regional Manager Aviation EMAIR until 2014.
Then followed a short two-year tenure with DHL as Head of Key Account Management.

It was then in 2016 that Martin convinced the top men at ECS in Paris that he was the right candidate to take over the future Managing Director position.
It won’t be any easy task as the air cargo market continues to face too much capacity and hence dwindling rates and bottom line earnings for the airlines.

What will the future bring?
One of Martin Bittner’s main goals will be how best to ensure Added Value in the difficult market place for the clientele of around 15 major carriers with Globe Air Cargo.
These include carriers such as DHL Aviation, SAS, Hainan Airlines and Malaysian.
Globe recently won a contract with Cargolux to represent the Luxembourg-based all cargo airline as their GSA in the eastern part of Germany.
Martin Bittner sees the necessity of bringing more tonnage on-line and increased productivity in order to compensate partly for lower rate structures presently on the market.
Another aspect he feels is to continue the good work Mark Grinsted initiated on supplying up-to-date technology which can be of benefit also for the client.
He told CargoForwarder Global that his message to the staff is to think on “what can I offer the client as GSA which is different to what he now has.”
He is convinced that GSA’s need to work as an airline and at the same time think as an agent.

As Mark retires and Martin steps in we wish both all the best for the future.

John Mc Donagh

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