Lufthansa Cargo freighter named for Mumbai
It has been quite a week for India in the world of air cargo. Finally, two years after the aircraft was delivered to Lufthansa Cargo in AUG20 and the pandemic delayed original plans, Lufthansa Cargo held a naming ceremony on 31MAY22 at Mumbai airport, coinciding with Messe München’s air cargo India taking place there, too. Its Boeing 777F bearing the registration D-ALFH, was officially christened “Namaste India”, before it left as flight LH8361 to Frankfurt. The naming, carried out by Lufthansa Cargo’s CCO, Ashwin Bhat, and attended by J. Florian Pfaff, Vice President Asia Pacific at Lufthansa Cargo, customers, and station employees, was in done recognition of the many years of cargo connections between India and Germany.
Ashwin Bhat declared: “For decades, Lufthansa Cargo has been an important and reliable partner in and for India. I am extremely pleased to personally mark this partnership and success story in the context of this freighter naming ceremony in my home city. It is our goal to continue connecting India with other markets around the world and to support the strong development of the Indian economy. On a positive note, since the reopening of Indian airspace for commercial passenger flights in MAR22, we have more than tripled the number of passenger flights. From ten weekly passenger flights, we now offer a total of 32 weekly connections. At the same time, we increased to four weekly freighter flights to Mumbai and thus offer considerably more options for our customers to transport their goods with the flexibility, reliability, and quality that Lufthansa Cargo is known for. And there will be more to come.”
The naming ceremony has become a tradition. Since 2013, Lufthansa Cargo has named its aircraft after the principal destinations in its network, as part of its “Say hello around the world,” initiative. With the Hindu greeting, “Namaste India”, the cargo airline celebrates a cooperation that dates back to 1959, with the expansion of freighter connections beginning in the 1970s. Lufthansa Cargo currently serves Mumbai four times a week, and Bengaluru and Chennai twice a week from Frankfurt, deploying B777F freighters. It also offers cargo capacity on the passenger flights out of Frankfurt and Munich to Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, and Mumbai.
Two new board members join TIACA
Priscilla Bueno from CRAFT Group, and Joseph Lawrence from Airline Services International are the latest appointments to TIACA’s Board, thus “creating one of the most diverse Boards in our history,” the press release underlines. Steven Polmans, TIACA Chair announces: “The appointment of these newest Board Members allows us to have a more diverse Board than we have ever had. It underlines our commitment to ensuring each sector of our industry and region are truly represented. I am proud of the work that we have done to reach this achievement. We welcome Priscilla and Joe to the Board and look forward to the unique knowledge they will bring, which will help shape the future of the association and the future of our industry.” The two newcomers represent the Forwarding and GSSA sectors.
Based in Brazil, Priscilla Bueno is the Chief Transformation Officer of CRAFT Group, the largest operating wholesaler in ocean and air freight in South America, with a presence in fifteen South American cities plus four North American offices: Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, and New Jersey. She has been with Craft for the past decade and in her current position since APR21. Commenting on her TIACA appointment on LinkedIn, Priscilla Bueno said: “Creating a positive, long-lasting impact in the air cargo world with all its stakeholders, is the goal I have agreed to share with brilliant minds of the industry through this Board appointment at The International Air Cargo Association TIACA. Thank you, Glyn Hughes, Christos Spyrou, and Steven Polmans, for promoting the first Latin American executive and company to be represented on your Board. I am honored and look forward to contributing!” She is the third female representative on the now 18-strong Board.
Joseph Lawrence, President of Airline Services International, a leading Canadian GSSA, brings 45 years of airline experience to the Board. Having been referred to on LinkedIn as “more experienced but young at heart and for sure dynamic” by Steven Polmans, Joseph Lawrence replied: “Appreciate the warm welcome, Steven. Looking forward to working with you and the Board.” With the latest additions, the association’s board is now complete. It has a full agenda for 2022, as it plans to launch the industry's first independently assessed sustainability verification program, Blue Sky, also to host the latest edition of its Air Cargo Forum on 08-10NOV22, in Miami, and to continue tackling industry challenges.
Antonov Airlines keeps flying
100 days into the illegal Russian invasion, and war is still raging in Ukraine. Antonov Airlines took devastating hits near the start of the war, losing significant aircraft. Yet the five AN-124-100s that were outside the country at the time, are still going strong, doing what they have always done: transporting outsize cargo. Most recently, the airline carried out a project to move a new mobile gas power plant generator, turbine, plus related equipment from Ljubljana, Slovenia, to Kano, Nigeria, on behalf of Chapman Freeborn Germany. Three flights carried a total of around 200 tons from Slovenia to Africa – the result of a year’s planning of the operation. “The entire Antonov team, from commercial to operational, route planning, and load planning, worked closely with our client and agents to ensure the safe delivery of this important cargo, which will support energy needs in Nigeria,” Eugene Kiva, Commercial Executive, Antonov Airlines, explained. “Our professional flight crew and technical staff ensured the flights went smoothly and the cargo arrived safely and on time ready to serve its humanitarian needs.”
The Ukraine-owned airline has continued to handle commercial flights to global destinations, alongside Ukrainian government services and flights for the Strategic Airlift International Solution (SALIS), and humanitarian missions.
“We continue to operate despite the challenges we have faced after the Russian invasion and the damage they caused to our Gostomel home base and some of our aircraft,” Eugene Gavrylov, Acting Director General of ANTONOV Company, said. “The services responsible for planning the transportation and maintenance of aircraft have been temporarily relocated to Leipzig, Germany. This allows us to ensure the further safe operation of Antonov fleet aircraft.”
A million green dollars for a greener future
dnata is putting its money where its mouth is and has pledged to spend US$ 100 million on sustainable measures within its operations. It will be spent over the next two years, as dnata continues to invest in its infrastructure, equipment, and looks to improve processes to make them more sustainable. The company is aiming to have reduced its carbon footprint by 50% by 2030, with an interim milestone of 20% by 2024.
Steve Allen, CEO of dnata Group, said: “We've been making great progress on reducing our carbon footprint, minimizing waste, and reducing energy and water consumption across our operations. We will further increase our investments and efforts in strong cooperation with our partners to achieve our targets and preserve the environment for current and future generations.”
The huge investment follows on from a number of initiatives already introduced across all dnata’s fractions. For example, over the past years, it has significantly invested in advanced technologies to optimize resources and improve operational efficiency across its facilities. Solar panels and heat recovery units have been installed at its sites in the UK, Singapore, and Ireland. It has also set up electric vehicle charging units and is currently planning carbon reduction measures in the construction and operation of its recently announced new cargo centers in The Netherlands and Iraq. Other green cargo options include conscious fleet planning, electric and hybrid ramp, ground support (GSE), and forklift equipment. Existing GSE have been refurbished with new technologies to further decrease emissions and update them to the latest safety and quality standards. No surprise, therefore, that dnata was the first ground handler to successfully complete green aircraft turnarounds using only zero-emission GSE in the USA and UAE. On the ground, dnata focuses on saving water consumption and recycling paper, plastic, cardboard, wood, glass, metal, used cooking and mineral oils. The waste goal is to reduce rubbish travelling to landfills by 20% in 2024.
One initiative worth emulating, was dnata’s MAY22 measure as part of its dnata4good social responsibility program: the manual clean-up of beaches, rivers, canals, and parks in a number of international locations. Several hundred dnata staff volunteered their time for this.
Kale Logistics scores a century of stations
India’s fourth largest airport, GMR Cargo Hyderabad becomes the 100th airport station to undergo a “very powerful digital transformation” thanks to Kale Logistics Solutions. The two companies signed the contract at air cargo India on the first day, 31MAY22, and promptly celebrated the occasion. As it turns out, GMR Cargo Hyderabad has made an excellent choice, seeing as how Kale Logistics Solutions, which has been in the business of air cargo tech solutions for 11 years now, was again awarded “International IT Systems Provider of the Year” at the air cargo India awards presentation that evening. “We are very proud to have been associated with 100 air cargo stations globally,” Amar More, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Kale Logistics Solutions, confirmed. “With our portfolio of industry-leading IT solutions for airports and the allied community, we look forward to helping the industry thrive in an increasingly digital-first world.” At the press event, he disclosed that the project was already underway and that the courier terminal would soon be going live.
Vineet Malhotra, Co-Founder and Director, Kale Logistics Solutions, said, “Leveraging the cutting-edge technologies, we aim to set high operational benchmarks for global air cargo industry. This being our one hundredth airport cargo station and yet another major airport in India, we are delighted to celebrate this at the most happening event of the year, Air Cargo India 2022 at Grand Hyatt, Mumbai, and in the midst of industry stalwarts from across the world.” The project involves implementing a unique air cargo solution resulting out of a combination of Kale’s Cargo Community System and its Cargo Management System, GALAXY, and covers air cargo processes at the airport’s courier, international, and domestic cargo operations. The community system with then connect more than 3,000 cargo agents, over 125 airlines, and will process more than three million annual payments and ten million EDI messages. Meanwhile, around 85% of India's air cargo processes run on Kale's systems. Speaking at the press event, Vineet Malhotra pointed out that air cargo players need to be future ready, and named an ABCD acronym covering all the ingredients for this. A stands for new technology going forward, B for Blockchain, C for Cloud, and D for Data Analytics and Drones. He also urged, “Don't just look at your airport, but also what your partner airports do, and how you can include them. Digital corridors should complement freight corridors. This is the future of our air cargo technology landscape!”
CargoAi and Air Cargo Inc announce partnership
Two complementary platforms are coming together to provide freight forwarders and air cargo customers with real-time visibility. Air Cargo Inc. around 2700 freight forwarders amongst its users, and is “the oldest and largest network of Air Freight cartage [trucking] agents providing first and last mile services to the Air Cargo Industry North America since 1941,” the press release explains. It also publishes and air freight directory, the ACI Guide, that is referred to as the “Bible” of domestic airfreight in North America. Its users will now be able to use CargoAi's digital freight forwarding platform once they open a free account, and have access to rate information as well as carry out eBookings and eQuotes on more than 60 airlines. Likewise, CargoAi customers can open a free account with ACI, which runs a suite of products which include the ACI raw data API (air freight routing data), the ACI Autorouter (an online freight door to door router), the ACI Load Board (receive bids on your shipments), and the ACI Gateway (TSA compliance software). Of particular use, ACI’s optimized-to-date booking experience of first and last-mile transportation to freight forwarders and air carriers in U.S. and Canada. It is this focus on real-time visibility and customer experience that joins the two companies, and the new collaboration “is designed to grow both companies' ability to deliver to their customers the most innovative and advanced way of managing their shipments through CargoAi' freight forwarding solution…providing visibility on multimodal shipments across the globe.”
“We are delighted to announce this partnership and continue in our commitment to make real-time visibility and industry standard. We are certain that this partnership will help to provide a better level of customer experience for Air Cargo Inc and CargoAi customers,” Matthieu Petot, CEO of CargoAi, stated.
Global Critical Logistics expands to Spanish-speaking world
Asesores de Flete, otherwise known as ADF, has been acquired by America’s leading live event, entertainment and sports logistics specialist, Global Critical Logistics. The company, based in Madrid, Spain, has been around since 1987, and is specialized in providing mission-critical logistics services to the live event, entertainment, sports, and broadcast industries – in other words, fits perfectly GCL’s profile. “ADF includes an experienced team of authorized in-house Customs experts and specializes in critical, zero-tolerance for failure projects serving customers around the globe,” the press release explains. Following the acquisition, it will be integrated under GCL's Rock-it Global brand, expanding the company’s capabilities in providing services to Spanish-speaking customers. ADF will continue to be led by Founder and Managing Director, Carlos Arauz Sanchez.
GCL’s Rock-it Global subsidiary is already active in Latin America, while ADF opens the European connection further. “Establishing a company-owned presence in Spain not only strengthens our geographic footprint in continental Europe, but also gives us direct access to customers in key end markets within the region,” Paul J. Martins, Chief Executive Officer and President, GCL, illustrated. “We are always looking for strategic opportunities to grow the business, enhance our value proposition to customers, and expand service offerings across the world. The acquisition of ADF builds on our strategy of enhancing capabilities to target customers in high growth industries such as live events, music touring, sports, broadcast, and film and television production.”
Rock-it Global also provides high-touch, mission-critical air, ocean, and surface freight forwarding and logistics services for the live entertainment and music touring, sports, broadcasting, corporate events, and tradeshow end markets. Commenting on the acquisition of DF, its Founder and Managing Director, Carlos Arauz, said: “For more than 30 years, ADF has focused on providing a customized service to very demanding clients. Joining the GCL family of companies and spearheading Rock-it Global's efforts in Spain is an exciting step for our team since we are culturally aligned and have the same passion for providing outstanding service. We believe this partnership will further allow us to leverage a global network and shared resources for our existing customers, whilst continuing to deliver critical solutions in Spain and the region.”
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