IN BRIEF - THE LATEST AIR CARGO INDUSTRY NEWS
Qatar Airways reports heavy loss
Doha-based Qatar Airways Group has published its fiscal year 2018/2019 results which show that the aspiring Middle East carrier had to report a net loss of US$620 million. The company’s CEO Akbar Al Baker described this as being a disappointing result which in a large part is due to higher fuel prices, currency fluctuations and having to withdraw important routes due to the continued blockage of airspace in the region for the airline.
Both passenger and cargo revenues actually increased during the fiscal year, with passenger revenues rising to US$9,3 billion and cargo revenue increasing to US$2,7 billion. The operating loss for the group reached US$490 million. Costs were highly affected by fuel prices rising by 36 percent to around US$4,9 billion. The shareholding in Air Italy has not helped to better Qatar Airways results. The Italian carrier posted a US$146,3 loss for the year. The Qatar Airways Group share of the Air Italy loss amounted to US$71,7 million.
DAKOSY steers e-commerce at Leipzig
Hamburg-headquartered DAKOSY Data Communications Systems, one of the best-known software developers for the logistics industry in Germany, has introduced their new Customs software at Leipzig Airport. The new system, named ZODIAK, will allow all e-commerce shipments which pass through the airport to be handled 100 percent digitally. DAKOSY states that the new software has been approved for all ATLAS Customs procedures and has already been put into service by ground handler PortGround Ltd which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Leipzig Airport owners, Mitteldeutsche Flughafen AG.
The Zodiak system will be used at Leipzig Airport as a so-called SaaS application (Software-as-a-Service) which is designed to ensure a better and faster Customs clearance on site. This is especially useful in enabling a speedy transit of inbound e-commerce shipments which pass through the airport. Leipzig Airport with its direct connections to two major German motorways as well as direct train services, is striving to put themselves on the map as the e-commerce hub in the area.
Virgin Atlantic now serves Tel Aviv
The London Heathrow / Gatwick-based UK carrier Virgin Atlantic has commenced with a daily Airbus A330-300 passenger service from Heathrow to Tel Aviv. The first flight, which had a full 20-ton cargo payload on board was operated on September 25th.
The route is seen by the carrier as being important for the carriage of cargo as the Israeli e-commerce, pharmaceutical and high value cargo markets are booming at the present time. Virgin Atlantic Cargo is represented in Israel by their GSSA partner, WTA, with Swissport providing the cargo handling services at Tel Aviv.
China Cargo picks LH Technik
China Eastern Airlines subsidiary, China Cargo which operates with a fleet of three Boeing 747-400 freighters, has chosen Germany’s Lufthansa Technik to provide components support for their freighters.
Both companies have signed a five-year Total Component Support (TCS) agreement which allows China Cargo direct access to aircraft components when needed and thereby not having to maintain their own spare parts inventory. A large cost saving for the Chinese carrier. The new (pooling) agreement gives China Cargo Airlines a 100 percent guarantee for timely delivery of almost 430 spare parts for the B747-400F.
WiseTech Global joins Cargo iQ
Sydney, Australia-based WiseTech Global who develop cloud-based software solutions for the logistics industry, has joined as a member of Cargo iQ.
Through their membership, they aim to provide independent freight forwarders with access to industry best practices, by means of their CargoWise One operational platform. Once WiseTech Global are fully accessible on Cargo iQ, CargoWise users will have the opportunity to tap into Cargo iQ’s quality standards and processes within their platform. CargoWise is helping logistics service providers in 150 countries to maintain cross border and multimodal transactions, as well as helping to manage the user’s operations. Richard White, Founder and CEO of WiseTech Global commented on his company’s joining Cargo iQ that: “joining Cargo iQ lets us take its standards and processes further across the industry, helping members to measure success, and ultimately improve the value of airfreight for forwarders large and small, as well as their customers.”
WestJet refuses all lithium shipments
Calgary, Canada-based Westjet Cargo has made it known that with immediate effect they will embargo the carriage of all types of shipments which contain lithium-metal and lithium-ion batteries. The embargo will remain in effect until further notice.
WestJet’s move may well turn out to be a temporary one whilst they work on their recent decision to move all of their cargo sales operations in-house. That decision was taken a couple of weeks ago. The carrier is now reviewing all of their processes and cargo acceptance rulings in order to make sure that their cargo aircraft operations remain safe. The embargo does not affect any other types of dangerous goods (DGR), which are listed as acceptable for the carriage by air.
TIACA Sustainability Programme gets new strategic support
Four of TIACA’s board members have signed up to support the new TIACA Sustainability Strategic Partnership Programme. These are Turkish Airlines, Brussels Airport, Flexport and Oman Aviation Services.
They join CHAMP Cargosystems which is the main sponsor of the programme. It was launched this summer and is headed by TIACA’s new Project Manager, Celine Hourcade. The Strategic Partner group will be busy until the end of this year in designing the implementation of the Sustainability Programme before making it fully available to members.
Kerry Logistics commended for innovation
Hong Kong-based Kerry Logistics was also honoured at this year’s Supply Chain Asia Awards event which was held in Singapore.
The logistics solutions giant won the coveted Supply Chain Innovation of the Year Award as well as for the sixth time the Asian 3PL of the Year Award. When given the 3PL Award Kerry Logistics was honoured by the judges for its ‘consistent service excellence and position as an industry leader in the region.’ And - the supply Chain Innovation Award of the Year (Smart Logistics) was presented to them for their usage of their proprietary Digital Logistics Product Portfolio (DLPP) Project which is aimed at digitalising supply chains and enhancing logistics services.
Robert van de Weg moves from airline to general sales agent
Robert van de Weg has become Chief Commercial Officer at Paris-headquartered general sales agent ECS, following his exit from London-based CargoLogic Management. This change of profession he confirmed to CargoForwarder Global. His main job will be to further expand the French sales agent’s global reach by acquiring additional business in the key European, Asian and American markets. In recent years, ECS has developed into one of the most dynamic sales agents worldwide, managing the cargo business of a growing number of carriers, including some low-cost airlines.
The manager started his career in air freight with KLM back in 1990. Ever since, he held leading positions in Cargolux, Atlas Air, and the Volga-Dnepr Group, including AirBridgeCargo Airlines.
Anderson becomes WFS Chairman
Ground handling agent Worldwide Flight Services has appointed Nils Anderson as Chairman of the WFS Board of Directors, effective September 19, 2019. The decision follows the acquisition of the handling agent by Cerberus Operations and Advisory Company UK, an affiliate of New York-based investment firm Cerberus Capital Management last year. Mr Anderson has held a variety of leading management positions over almost two decades at large listed and non-listed companies around the world, across several industries: logistics, packaging, oil and gas, brewing and consumer goods, serving as President & CEO of Carlsberg and A.P. Moller, and as Chairman of AkzoNobel. He has also served as a Board Member of BP and Unilever.
“I am pleased to welcome Nils as our Chairman,” said Craig Smyth, Chief Executive Officer of WFS. “Nils brings tremendous expertise and experience to WFS.” Mr Anderson commented: “I am excited to take on the role of Chairman of the WFS Board and look forward to working alongside the Board and executive team as the business continues to expand and take advantage of market opportunities.”
Biman Bangladesh Airlines is reported to be planning the addition of two freighter aircraft to their fleet. So far the Dhaka based carrier only operates with passenger aircraft, but are also busy in revamping their cargo facilities at the main base.
Magma Aviation which is based in the UK and operates services to Africa and North America utilising B747-400 freighters from Air Atlanta Iceland, is to start a new Liege (Belgium) to Rwanda’s Kigali Airport. The new weekly service will also be operated by Air Atlanta Icelandic who in the meantime operate four B747Fs for Magma.
John Mc Donagh
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