AFKLMP launches COVID Service Center
Having trialed the service in a few countries recently, Air France KLM Martinair Cargo has now opened a 24/7 Service Center dedicated entirely to Covid-19 vaccines shipment transports, thus further improving its service. It has already transported millions of doses of Covid-19 vaccines across the world over the past few months and is one of the signatories of UNICEF’s Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative, which oversees the fair distribution of Covid-19 vaccines to those countries most in need, that require financial support in acquiring them. Already, AFKLMP has transported vaccines to various countries in South America and Africa.
“Understandably, at this exceptional time, a great deal of attention is devoted to combating the coronavirus crisis and everything that comes with it, such as the transportation of vaccines. I am grateful that we can make an essential contribution to this,” GertJan Roelands, SVP Sales & Distribution AFKLMP Cargo, commented.
“Our extensive experience and know-how, our dedicated and well-trained teams, combined with our wide product range and global network, are the most important pillars to provide our customers with the best possible service.”
In addition to a 24/7 dedicated service, Air France KLM Martinair Cargo’s new Customized COVID Vaccines solution ensures all kinds of temperature ranges are adhered to, offers various container types, along with premium other features such as highest priority on board, shipment monitoring and intervention, and specific security measures. The Customized COVID Vaccines shipments run under the mandatory special handling code SHL (Save Human Life).
cargo-partner sorts the drinks over in Chicago
Bartending with a difference: Sorting over 500 daily orders of various beverages that have been ordered online and now need packaging and sending, requires an intelligent, and efficient e-fulfillment solution. And that is exactly what cargo-partner’s IT department has come up with. Its upgraded "Multi-Order Picking (MOP) module" streamlines the picking process while keeping it separate from packing operations, and forms part of cargo-partner's warehouse management system (WMS). MOP was developed especially for a major European beverages company looking to expand its USA business, over at cargo-partner’s 14,000 m² Chicago warehouse. Following initial talks in NOV20, the international beverages company chose to operate the distribution of its growing e-commerce business out of cargo-partner’s iLogistics Center.
“With cargo-partner's Multi-Order Picking module, multiple dispatch orders are consolidated into one picking tour. Orders can be consolidated by shipping method, service level, delivery addresses, weight and other factors required to have the client's special demands already processed by the pickers. Pickers use a trolley with several bins, with each bin corresponding to one dispatch order. The picker is guided by scanner from one order position to the next, and a built-in control mechanism automatically prevents scanning of the picked item into the wrong box,” the press release explains, underlining that MOP connects via API connection to the customer's Shopify web shop, and thus receives its orders directly, while at the same time providing automated order confirmations and real-time tracking, as well as inventory information to the vendor.
Juraj Hric, Chief Operations Officer of cargo-partner in the USA, stated: “The special purpose version of our Multi-Order Picking module has helped us not only to streamline our warehouse operations, but also to provide even faster and more efficient service to our customers. We are glad to be able to offer our new client an end-to-end fulfillment solution for their online business, allowing them to focus fully on marketing and selling their product more effectively. After the successful expansion of our MOP module, we are sure that many more customers from the e-commerce segment will benefit from our continuously growing service portfolio.”
Gebrüder Weiss publishes strong 2020 figures
Gebrüder Weiss managed a year-on-year increase of 3.7% in 2020, resulting in net sales of 1.77 billion euros, compared to 1.71 billion euros in 2019. It continued to expand, building on its
ongoing success. “Key to our positive development was the fact that we remained flexible and fully operational during the Covid-19 crisis – at all of our locations worldwide. We retained our
ability to provide the transport solutions our customers need, despite repeated lockdowns and global cargo space shortages. Our employees have performed outstanding work under difficult
conditions,” Wolfram Senger-Weiss, Chairman of the Management Board at Gebrüder Weiss, stated.
Three areas were key: digitalization, sustainability and global network growth. 2020 saw the launch of myGW in 6 European markets: an online one-stop-shop customer portal for Gebrüder Weiss services and real-time status information. “Our digital strategy 'Best of Both Worlds' – by which we mean the combination of physical and digital competence – has proven itself above all during this crisis. We have been able to underscore our reputation as a reliable and innovative logistics partner. The positive customer feedback has reaffirmed our strategic direction,” Wolfram Senger-Weiss continued, pointing to continued rollout to include more countries in 2021.
It also expanded its physical air/sea network, opening new offices in Germany, Poland, South Korea, Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand, bringing its total to 170 offices in 35 countries across the globe. "Given the restrictions on travel, the expansions were all implemented remotely. This involved daunting challenges for the various teams – which they managed well using digital communication tools," Senger-Weiss explained. Of particular note in its air freight sector, the acquisition of Ipsen Logistics had a positive impact. Overall, sales in air and sea freight increased by 23.7% to 470 million euros, compared to 380 million euros in 2019.
Regarding sustainability, following its goal of becoming CO2 neutral by 2030, Gebrüder Weiss installed more photovoltaic systems at its own logistics terminals, increased its use of alternative drive technologies such as electricity, gas and hydrogen for trucks, and began offering customers the option to offset carbon emissions by supporting certified climate protection projects.
Lufthansa Cargo has three reasons to celebrate
Two of those reasons are related to its Pharma Centers in Munich and Chicago, which both opened last summer and have now been CEIV Pharma certified. In addition to Lufthansa Cargo’s own CEIV Pharma certification as an airline, its network of certified pharma centers now numbers 32. Add another 200 stations capable of handling temperature-controlled shipments, and you find that Lufthansa Cargo has one of the largest pharmaceutical networks in the world and is thus well-equipped to handle this year’s prime commodity: COVID-19 vaccines. The cargo carrier even developed a unique product: COVID-19 Temp Premium, which it launched in DEC20, complete with additional services, such as seamless monitoring, high-priority capacity access or 24/7 after-sales support.
“The latest CEIV Pharma certification of our centers in Munich and Chicago confirms our high competence in handling pharmaceutical products. With the construction of the two new state-of-the-art centers, we have been able to significantly expand our excellent pharma network. Particularly in view of the corona pandemic, these are promising investments for the future. We can offer our customers the global transport of sensitive corona vaccines via two additional certified centers. We are pleased about the official confirmation of our offer by the CEIV Pharma label,” Thorsten Braun, Senior Director Industry Development and Product Management at Lufthansa Cargo, explained.
The third reason to celebrate, is the fact that Lufthansa Cargo recently won the “Digital PR Award 2020” for “Best Newsroom”, awarded by PR-Software provider “Mynewsdesk”. Lufthansa Cargo beat other competitors from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. The jury declared: “Lufthansa Cargo’s Newsroom convinces with meaningful, short headlines, additional content, and a comprehensive and well-keyworded media gallery. The images are neatly named and clearly described, giving journalists a good overview. All in all, a highly successful newsroom that also visually follows the corporate design.”
“After a particularly challenging year in terms of communication in 2020, we are all the more pleased about the award and appreciative recognition of our communication activities in the digital newsroom at Lufthansa Cargo,” Jacqueline Casini, Lufthansa Cargo’s Senior Director Communications, Marketing and Corporate Responsibility, was pleased to comment.
time:matters speaks the customer’s digital language
Created in 2011, WeChat is THE communication channel in China, enabling multi-purpose messaging, social media activities and mobile payments. It plays a central role in the population’s activities, counting more than 900 million daily users, and – since March – one particular user more. time:matters Holding GmbH’s Chinese subsidiary, time:matters (Shanghai) International Freight Forwarding Ltd. is now live on WeChat with an official B2B channel.
Reaching the customer where they hang out, time:matters now publishes customized posts both in Mandarin and English at frequent intervals, massively improving its networking reach. “The principle aim behind this is to connect with WeChat users in China. This will allow us to generate followers as well as inform business partners and prospective customers about the company and our highly efficient transport services. Joining the platform marks another milestone in our digital customer communication strategy,” Alexander Kohnen, CEO of time:matters, outlined the strategy. Constance Wu, Executive Director time:matters (Shanghai) International Freight Forwarding Ltd., explained “Users do not even have to leave WeChat anymore to connect and communicate with companies and find their products and services. For this and other reasons, a WeChat profile is very important to us. By launching our own B2B channel on the platform, we want to tap into WeChat’s huge potential. Interested users will now receive news that is specific to the target group, such as information on network expansions as well as product and industry-specific updates. We are also looking forward to engaging enthusiastically with users so that we can best align our transport solutions with customer needs.”
Volga-Dnepr’s annual cool landings in Antarctica
For the 6th year running, Volga-Dnepr has carried out cargo operations for the Dronning Maud Land Air Network Project (DROMLAN). What began in 2015, has in the meantime notched up more than 150 charter flights to/from Antarctica delivering over 1,700 tons of general and special cargo on board its IL-76TD-90VD. This time, 5 charters flew to the coldest continent for the DROMLAN international Antarctic project. Setting off from Cape Town (South Africa), they flew 4,200 km to land on the Novolazarevskaya runway (Novo), in close cooperation with the Antarctic Logistics Centre International (ALCI). More than 200 tons of essential general cargo were transported, destined for the research stations. Novo runway demands particular skill and experience, since it is pure, glacier ice.
In addition to these annual supply flights, Volga-Dnepr also offers ‘airlift-and-drop’ delivery solutions to other stations in Antarctica, and last year, it premiered a IL-76TD-90VD flights from South Africa to Chile via Antarctica.
Ekaterina Andreeva, Commercial Director for Volga-Dnepr Airlines, stated: “We are proud to be part of the DROMLAN international Antarctic project this year. Despite the challenging times and COVID-19 restriction, we supported the program to Antarctic Research Stations, thus enabling the scientists to continue their research programs. We would like to thank our partner, ALCI, who creates the intercontinental air bridge between Cape Town (South Africa) and Novolazarevskaya station during the austral summer. Each year we increase the number of certified crew members to guarantee smooth operations – by 2020/2021 we have had two trained and qualified crews and we hope that by the next season we will have more.”
ANA Cargo sees air cargo potentials in global chip shortage
ANA has seen a huge increase in cargo through the pandemic, with automotive parts, semiconductors, and home/lifestyle products. While cargo used to make up 10% of its company revenue, cargo operations have grown by 90% in Q3/20, compared to the same period in 2019. With the pandemic forcing people to stay at home, sales of 5G-related equipment such as smartphones and laptops have boomed. The automotive market, though sluggish at first, has also picked up, and all this has led to a shortage of chips – a potential for air freight that ANA Cargo is eyeing, its CEO, Toshiaki Toyama, told Bloomberg in a recent interview. "Supply chains are scrambling for automotive chips, that’s where air cargo can play a role,” especially given the major congestion problems that sea freight is facing. “Marine transportation has been very tight since last fall due to the coronavirus, so air cargo is overflowing.” He predicts that 2021 will see a boost in air cargo shipments of semiconductors to combat the chip shortage and help to speed up deliveries to automakers and consumer-electronics manufacturers.
Despite ANA currently ranking 12th in the list of global cargo airlines, based on scheduled tons, it aims to become the 5th largest airline over the next years. How? Not with increased freighter aircraft, Toyama explains, but with more efficient use of the current volumes, and concentrating on “carrying cargo that other cargo carriers can’t deliver, such as precision machines and goods requiring special care and attention.” He is looking to transpacific routes between Japan, China, and North America.
DB Schenker invests in sustainability in Austria
DB Schenker has declared 2021 to be its ECO Year, and – in line with its sustainability strategy - ceremoniously took delivery of two emission-free electric trucks on 12MAR21 in the presence of DI (FH) Hans-Jürgen Salmhofer, MSc, Federal Ministry for Climate Protection, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, DB Schenker, and Daimler Trucks management. The fully electric, Daimler Trucks brand FUSO eCanters will help to reduce noise and pollution in Vienna’s city center. “Climate neutrality in 2040 is an ambitious goal. This is particularly true for transport. In the future, the transport of goods will be climate-neutral, renewable and energy-saving. This makes it all the more important for innovative companies like DB Schenker to demonstrate today with the two new electric delivery vehicles what will be taken for granted tomorrow,” DI (FH) Hans-Jürgen Salmhofer, stated.
Mag. Alexander Winter, CEO of DB Schenker in Austria and Southeast Europe, added: "DB Schenker has set itself the goal of becoming the leading provider of green logistics and reducing specific transport emissions by 40% by 2030. With the deployment of the all-electric light trucks in Vienna's city center, we are taking a big step towards achieving this goal and making CO2-free city logistics a reality." The trucks, capable of carrying 3.2 tons, will be used between Vienna and Linz, with two more vehicles to follow for Salzburg and Innsbruck. DB Schenker’s total European fleet now numbers 41 FUSO eCanter trucks across cities in eleven European countries.
Over in Carinthia, the company is investing another 5 million euros to construct a new, sustainable logistics warehouse in Klagenfurt, powered by an environmentally friendly photovoltaic system. The warehouse will be 4,900 m² and include a 650 m² Dangerous Goods hall, all meeting the most modern safety requirements and strict hazardous materials guidelines. It is due to be completed in FEB22. In addition to the photovoltaic system, the site will also feed into Klagenfurt's district heating network, thus further contributing to CO2 reduction.
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