IN BRIEF - THE LATEST AIR CARGO INDUSTRY NEWS
LH Cargo’s sixth B777F christened in Tokyo
At a ceremony held last week at Tokyo’s Narita Airport and attended by LH Cargo’s CEO, Peter Gerber, the German Ambassador to Japan and various top Japanese officials, the freight carrier’s sixth Boeing 777F was christened and given the name “Konnichiwa Japan.” It is a tradition in Japan that at such ceremonies a barrel of sake, the very potent Japanese national drink, is opened and used for the ceremony. There was no exception at Narita Airport and the latest B777F to join LH Cargo’s fleet was duly sprinkled with sake before the attendees also got a glass or two. Lufthansa has been serving Japan with freighter connections since 1969, having started serving customers in the Land of the Rising Sun since 1961. A joint venture between Japan’s ANA Cargo and LH Cargo has been in effect since 2014.
In other news, LH Cargo has honoured Kuehne + Nagel with the “Planet Award of Excellence“ as their top client for 2018. At the ceremony, which was held in Brussels, Niek van der Weide, VP Global Head of Carrier Network Optimization, received the award on behalf of K+N. Kuehne + Nagel received the award for the second time, the first being in 2006 and has a long standing history of cooperation with Lufthansa Cargo.
Jettainer moves into new JettHub
The German service partner for ULD management inaugurated their new logistics centre for unit load devices in a ceremony held in Frankfurt on 24. May. The new “JettHub” has a working area of 18,000 square meters which are dedicated for normal ULD handling, maintenance and other services. The centre is situated next to Frankfurt Airport in the town of Gross-Gerau and has space to accommodate 6,600 containers and pallets. It is kitted out with special large stackers and racks which are designed to allow a more efficient use of the storage area. Jettainer also has a 24/7 shuttle service which can bring containers and pallets within minutes to the cargo section of Frankfurt Airport.
Frank Muehlenkamp, Director of Operations at Jettainer is happy with his new logistics centre and commented at the opening ceremony that: “With the modern JettHub, we are securing long-term development potential for the management and maintenance of the world’s largest fleet of ULDs.”
Atran Airlines flies for Cainiao
The Russian-based express carrier which is part of the Volga-Dnepr group of airlines has announced that they are starting a new route between the Chinese city of Hangzhou and Riga in Latvia. The airline is starting from the Chinese city which is said to be an emerging technology hub, with a once weekly B737-800BCF freighter service. The B737-800F which can carry up to 23 tons of cargo will transport e-commerce shipments between China and Latvia on behalf of the Cainiano Network which is the logistics arm of the Alibaba Group.
The Volga-Dnepr Group signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the end of 2018 with Cainiao Network with the aim of working close together and jointly build what they term as a ‘global smart logistics network to meet upgrading demand.’ The shipments will be distributed to Russian and EU countries from Riga and Atran Airlines is also offering a direct freighter service from Riga to Moscow on the back of the Hangzhou - Riga operation.
ABC’s XL business continues to grow
Another Volga-Dnepr Group member, AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) is reporting that demand for their ‘abc XL’ product continues to grow. The service which caters for clients having heavy and oversized shipments which must be transported by air, is seemingly well booked as the carrier states that during the first four months of this year they uplifted 11,000 tonnes, an increase of 3% over the same period in 2018.
The highest increase on oversize and heavy shipments has been on the Europe to North America sectors with also a heavy demand from North America to destinations in Europe and beyond. So called “out-of-gauge” shipments which can only be loaded and offloaded through the B747F’s nose door have increased by 10% during the first four months, says ABC. The carrier has now branded one of their B747Fs with the abc XL livery.
Cargo iQ gets new leaders
A change of leadership at Cargo iQ was announced at their Annual General Meeting last month at the Singapore Cargo Symposium. The new Chair of Cargo iQ’s Board is Henrik Ambak, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Cargo Operations at Emirates SkyCargo. Henrik is no stranger to the air cargo world and brings an enormous amount of experience with him which can only be of benefit to Cargo iQ in the future.
Henrik Ambak was previously Vice-Chair at Cargo iQ and this position has now been awarded to Kerstin Strauss, Vice President and Head of Global Air Logistics Operations at Kühne + Nagel. Kerstin Straus began her career at K+N in 1994 when she started as an apprentice and has since moved steadily up the ladder, working in both air and sea freight departments. She was head of strategic customer development in the company’s pharma and healthcare sectors before taking up her present role in air logistics. At the annual meeting there were also various other new appointments within the Cargo iQ Board.
Unilode introduces new ULD lease programme
Zurich-based Unilode Aviation Solutions, one of the largest suppliers of aircraft ULDs and management support has expanded their ULD Solutions portfolio by adding short- and medium term ULD leasing services. This gives customers immediate access to PMC and heavy-duty pallets and Unilode plans to expand the service in the near future to include other ULD types.
In a statement, Unilode says that ‘ULDs can now be leased from different strategic storage locations around the globe to increase customers’ operational flexibility and cover ULD imbalances and seasonal shortages. Unilode operates a strong network out of air cargo hubs in Europe, Asia and the USA and has plans to add further locations in other areas soon.
TAPA appoints Neumann as EMEA head
Thorsten Neumann who has served in a voluntary capacity at the Transported Asset Protection Association (TAPA) since 2006 has now been officially appointed as full time President & CEO of TAPA EMEA. Thorsten who also serves as Director APS Channel Security & Business Resilience at Microsoft has held the EMEA position at TAPA on a voluntary base for many years. The appointment of a full time CEO is a new move by TAPA officials.
Mr Neumann is no stranger to security issues surrounding the safe transport of cargo across the globe. He started his career in 1998 with Motorola Mobility and then moved in 2008 to Nokia before taking up his present position at Microsoft in 2015. The appointment of the EMEA CEO as a permanent position is aimed at TAPA, which was founded in 1997 being better geared towards moving forward at a faster pace in the future.
DHL celebrates 50 years with StreetScooter plans
DHL which this year celebrates its 50th anniversary, having started in 1969 in San Francisco by offering a new direct parcel delivery service on the US West Coast, has presented the market with their plans in cooperation with vehicle maker StreetScooter to develop a new electric drive vehicle operated with hydrogen technology. So far it bears the name “H2 Panel Van” and DHL Express which will be the main user states that the new fuel cells developed will give the vehicle a range of up to 500 kilometers before recharging becomes necessary.
Plans for the introduction of this new method of parcel delivery are well under way and DHL Express has confirmed that they have so far ordered 100 vehicles with delivery starting in early 2020. The H2 Panel Van which will weigh 4.25 tonnes with its added electric fuel cell can accommodate up to 10 cubic meters of cargo and will have a maximum payload of 800 kilos. So far DHL Express will be the exclusive user of the new van and they state that there are no plans to sell the H2 Panel Van to other parties outside of the Deutsche Post DHL Group.
John Mc Donagh