A350 freighter

Etihad firms up new-generation A350 freighter order

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A350 freighter

Following its earlier commitment announced at the Singapore Airshow, Etihad Airways has firmed up its order of seven new-generation A350F freighters.

The carrier says the aircraft will upgrade Etihad’s freight capacity by deploying the most efficient cargo aircraft available in the market.

This order sees Etihad expanding its relationship with Airbus and adds to its existing order of the largest passenger version of A350-1000s, five of which have been delivered.

Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said: “In building one of the world’s youngest and most sustainable fleets, we are delighted to extend our long-term partnership with Airbus to add the A350 Freighter to our fleet. This additional cargo capacity will support the unprecedented growth we are experiencing in the Etihad Cargo division.

“Airbus has developed a remarkable fuel-efficient aircraft that, in tandem with the A350-1000 in our passenger fleet, supports our commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.”

“Airbus is delighted to extend its long standing partnership with Etihad Airways, who recently introduced the A350 passenger services and is continuing to build on the family with the game-changing freighter version, the A350F,” said Christian Scherer, Chief Commercial Officer and Head of Airbus International.

“This new generation large freighter brings unprecedented and unmatched benefits in terms of range, fuel efficiency and CO₂ savings, that support customers by enhancing operational efficiencies at the same time as reducing environmental impact.”

Etihad has also firmed up a long term agreement for Airbus’ Flight Hour Services (FHS) to support its entire A350 fleet, to maintain aircraft performance and optimise reliability.

cargo.one and Japan Airlines Cargo partnership

JALCARGO signs distribution agreement with cargo.one

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cargo.one and Japan Airlines Cargo partnership

Japan Airlines’ cargo division JALCARGO and cargo.one today announced an international partnership that brings the airline’s capacities to the leading global marketplace for digital air cargo bookings.

Under the agreement, JALCARGO has appointed cargo.one as its partner to advance its digital business and footprint. This follows news that this month, cargo.one became available to Japanese freight forwarders, offering them a seamless digital booking experience and the chance to improve their efficiency and competitiveness.

Tokyo’s airports are consistently performing within the world’s top air cargo hubs by freight tonnes. JALCARGO delivered over 740,000 tonnes of air cargo during 2021, and offers impressive flexibility in its domestic network. In a move to broaden its digital footprint, JALCARGO has partnered with cargo.one based on its technological and commercial achievements for many of the world’s leading airlines, as well as its ability to deliver forwarders reliable digital booking experiences.

Hiroo Iwakoshi, Executive Officer, Cargo and Mail at Japan Airlines, commented: “Delivering an outstanding customer experience is an important element of our business strategy. cargo.one shares both our high regard for customer focus and service level, but also our ambition and entrepreneurial spirit to satisfy the market. With a presence on cargo.one, JALCARGO is now even more strongly placed to differentiate online and scale new heights of digital success”.

“We are honoured to have been chosen as the trusted partner of Japan’s flag carrier, and look forward to working hand in hand with their teams to advance their digital strategy”, said Moritz Claussen, Founder and Co-CEO of cargo.one. “The partnership will further strengthen our leading position in the Asia Pacific region and deliver a unique and high quality digital offering to freight forwarders around the globe.”

A330-300 E Class cargo conversion

Vallair and UUDS announce Airbus A330-300 E Class cargo conversion

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A330-300 E Class cargo conversion

Vallair has unveiled the first ever E Class widebody freighter conversion capability at its brand new state-of-the-art mega hangar in Châteauroux, France.

The solution, which is designed to bridge the gap while operators currently wait five years or more for full freighter conversion slots, is the result of a joint investment between France-based companies Vallair and UUDS, which is Part 21 certified.

Grégoire Lebigot, Founder, President & CEO of Vallair highlighted the importance of the programme: “Innovation is and has always been integral to Vallair’s DNA. Turning the Airbus A330-300 upper deck into a cargo area without installing the large cargo door means that the conversion cost will be just a quarter of the cost compared to a conversion with one.

“Turnaround time will be just around one month instead of six – so the benefits are clear to see. Also, it is the very first “made in France” cargo conversion programme for a widebody aircraft, and Vallair is proud to spearhead this efficient, industry-leading process as part of its re-industrialisation of aviation in the region.”

Vallair says its E Class solution means that loading is not done on pallets or containers but uses a conveyor that fits inside the cargo hold to efficiently load and distribute individual parcels instead. This proven concept expedites the process and reduces turnaround times considerably.

“This solution addresses current market needs and increases the value of the asset because it is completely reversible should the market change,” Lebigot says.  “The aircraft can easily be converted back to PAX configuration, or transformed into a freighter with a large cargo door in future.  It is a complementary alternative solution to the traditional freighter conversion, not a replacement.”

Vallair says EASA approval using a Supplemental Type Certificate is expected within the next two months.

Gilles Negre, Founder & CEO of UUDS comments: “Flexibility in aircraft cabin and cargo configuration has always been key factor for successful aviation operations and revenue optimisation. Our quick change and reversible solution brings this versatility to operators and gives them additional revenue generating options. It also offers lessors alternative solutions to boost their aircraft utilisation and life expectancy. Return-on-investment is improved and asset value is increased.”

Vallair says its new hangar in Châteauroux is an important catalyst for the Airbus A330-300 E Class conversion. The hangar can accommodate two Airbus A330 aircraft, or one Airbus A330 and up to three Airbus A321s at any one time, resulting in Vallair being able to perform both wide and narrowbody maintenance, and offer a ‘Swiss-knife’ approach with tailored solutions using all of its capabilities on site including maintenance, paint, engine shop, aerostructure repairs, conversion, teardown and component support.

IATA calls for greater support in safe transportation of lithium batteries

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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is calling on governments to further support the safe carriage of lithium batteries. The association wants to see global standards for screening, fire-testing and incident information sharing being developed and implemented globally.

The challenge is the rapid increase in global demand for lithium  batteries (the market is growing 30% annually) according to IATA, which in turn is bringing new shippers into air cargo supply chains. Subsequently a critical risk that is evolving is incidents of undeclared or mis-declared shipments.

IATA has long been calling for governments to increase enforcement of safety regulations around the transport of lithium batteries. It would like to see these regulations including stiffer penalties for rogue shippers and the criminalisation of egregious or willful offenses.

Additional measures the association would like to see being introduced include: The development of safety-related screening standards and processes for lithium batteries; the development and implementation of a fire-testing standard that addresses lithium battery fire containment; and enhanced safety data collection and sharing of information between governments.

Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General commented: “Airlines, shippers, manufacturers and governments all want to ensure the safe transport of lithium batteries by air. It’s a joint responsibility. The industry is raising the bar to consistently apply existing standards and share critical information on rogue shippers. But there are some areas where the leadership of governments is critical. Stronger enforcement of existing regulations and the criminalisation of abuses will send a strong signal to rogue shippers. And the accelerated development of standards for screening, information exchange and fire containment will give the industry even more effective tools to work with.”

chartersync

IATA Annual Review echoes CharterSync’s outlook for air cargo growth

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chartersync

Digital air cargo charter business CharterSync says it is thrilled to see the company’s optimistic outlook for air cargo growth reflected in the findings of the IATA Annual Review 2022.

Ed Gillett, Co-Founder and Director of the company commented: “The air cargo industry is showing real resilience, with global air cargo volumes forecast to hit a record high of 68.4 million tonnes in 2022. With our own volumes set to treble in 2022, and growing interest from North America, the Far East and South America, we are confident that this growth will continue – even in the face of inflation and economic downturn.”

The financial picture is also inspiring confidence according to Gillett: “While overall air cargo revenues have nearly doubled since 2019, CharterSync’s own revenues are set to treble in 2022. As a digital disruptor ourselves, CharterSync is always pleased to see how digitalisation plays a key role in modernising and streamlining the industry.

“A key digitalisation milestone, highlighted by IATA, will be reached in 2022 when the industry discontinues the use of paper-based air waybills, replacing them with de-materialised electronic air waybills on 100% of shipments on all enabled trade lanes. By bringing to an end the antiquated, manual legacy systems, this development will significantly streamline the processing of documents and shipments of air cargo.

“Whilst eliminating the need for printing and the archiving of documents, this will be a small step towards more sustainable options. IATA played a pivotal role in promoting this change and they should be thoroughly applauded for this achievement.”

Cathay Pacific cargo

Swiss WorldCargo signs agreement with Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa Cargo

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Cathay Pacific cargo

Swiss WorldCargo has signed a deal to join Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa Cargo’s agreement in providing cargo customers with more direct connections, flexibility and time savings.

The deal builds on the joint business agreement signed in 2016 between Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa Cargo, which enables the two airlines to cooperate in terms of sales, pricing, contracts and the handling of shipments between Hong Kong and Europe.

According to Cathay Pacific, the carrier and Lufthansa Cargo already have a close collaboration on international lanes via their hubs in Hong Kong and Germany. The handling of cargo in Hong Kong is coordinated under one roof at the Cathay Pacific Cargo Terminal of Hong Kong International Airport.

Cathay Pacific, Lufthansa Cargo and Swiss WorldCargo will work closely on network planning, sales, IT and ground handling and cargo customers will be able to access the entire joint network via the partners’ booking systems.

Cathay Pacific Director Cargo Tom Owen said: “We are delighted to welcome Swiss WorldCargo into our joint business agreement. Cathay Pacific is always looking for more ways to give our cargo customers greater choice and more options for shipments whenever they fly their goods with us. The addition of Swiss WorldCargo’s flights to the already large combined network of Cathay Pacific and Lufthansa will further bring Hong Kong, the world’s busiest air cargo hub, closer to Europe and strengthen one of the world’s great trade lanes.”

Lufthansa Cargo CEO Dorothea von Boxberg said: “We are very pleased about the trilateral cooperation just starting, bringing three well-known cargo carriers to the table and making our customers an even more attractive offer. Cargo customers will appreciate the opportunities for quicker and easier shipping. The expanded joint venture will generate numerous benefits for our customers because our networks, our hubs and our fleet complement each other effectively.”

Swiss International Air Lines Head of Cargo Lorenzo Stoll said: “We are very excited to be entering this joint business agreement between Lufthansa Cargo and Cathay Pacific, thanks to which we can not only strengthen our already close collaboration, but also expand our network offering to our customers, while staying true to our high quality and flexibility.”

Nordic Air Cargo Symposium 2022

Nordic Air Cargo Symposium 2022 sees record attendance

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Nordic Air Cargo Symposium 2022

The air cargo sector has been a bright spot for airlines throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and this was highlighted at one of the industry’s key events, the Nordic Air Cargo Symposium, earlier this week.

In addition to operators facilitating global trade and delivering critical medical supplies to the regions around the world where they are most urgently needed, air freight has been meeting the growing transport needs of the ever-expanding e-commerce sector.

As operators are creating more capacity to meet the increasing demand, new and exciting innovations are being launched to optimise and simplify processes, resulting in a stronger and more agile air freight industry.

The Nordic Air Cargo Symposium, which took place in Copenhagen on Tuesday 5 April, is the only regional event focusing on the North European air cargo market and brings together cargo operators, forwarders, integrators, shippers, airlines, airports, investors, entrepreneurs and suppliers.

During his welcome keynote, Lars-Gunnar Comén, Director of Euroavia International, which has been running the event for several years, said it was clear that for many delegates the event was the first chance to meet with their industry contacts in person since the pandemic began. He also revealed that the symposium’s attendance was at its highest level ever, with well over 200 attendees gathering in Copenhagen.

The day featured several key topics for the sector, including sustainability, the pharma supply chain and the current state of the market.

Thomas Crabtree, Market Analysis, Air Cargo at Boeing Commercial Airplanes, gave an insightful overview of the current state of the industry, revealing that freighter fleet numbers are predicted to grow by 70% by 2040. “Air freight is set for strong growth and the relative value of air cargo service is more competitive than ever” he said.

Glyn Hughes, Director General of the International Air Cargo Association, praised the industry’s ability to work as a global team, adding: “In the past two years the air cargo industry has worked together more collaboratively than ever, and this needs to continue.”

Digital transformation is always at the forefront when it comes to the priorities for the air freight industry and this year’s Nordic Air Cargo Symposium was no exception. The topic featured prominently at this year’s event, with Emirates Cargo’s Henrik Ambak and Finnair Cargo’s Fredrik Wildtgrube as well as CharterSync Director and Co-founder Ed Gillett, Webcargo’s Camilo Garcia Cervera and InstaDeep’s Jakub Kmec sharing their views on this ever-important topic.

“Digitalisation and new technology provide better efficiency, customer and employee experience as well as environmental sustainability,” said Finnair Cargo’s Vice President, Fredrik Wildtgrube, highlighting the importance of air cargo operators ensuring they continue to adopt new technologies.

The next issue of Inflight has a special focus on the dynamic Nordic air cargo market and we will be featuring interviews from this week’s event, in addition to exploring the current trends, innovation and new services in the air cargo landscape.

Asiana Airlines cargo. Copyright Asiana Airlines.

Asiana Airlines extends Lufthansa Technik CF6-80 maintenance contract

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Asiana Airlines cargo. Copyright Asiana Airlines.

Lufthansa Technik has announced that South Korean carrier Asiana Airlines has extended its contract for the repair and overhaul of Asiana’s CF6-80 engines powering the carrier’s Boeing 747 and 767 fleets.

The five-year non-exclusive contract covers a total of 17 B767-300 and B747-400 aircraft and the extension will strengthen Lufthansa Technik’s business in the Asian market and generate a stable workload for the CF6 product line over the next years.

Hoon Bae, General Manager of Aircraft & Supplies Purchasing at Asiana Airlines, said: “There were numerous good reasons to choose Lufthansa Technik as our preferred MRO partner again. With the seamless support and services that have been delivered, we are very confident that Lufthansa Technik will always do their very best to keep us flying.”

Kijung Shin, Corporate Key Account Manager at Lufthansa Technik, said: “We are very proud that Asiana Airlines has decided to extend our trustful co-operation. We look forward to further supporting them with our know-how and engine service capabilities.”

Lufthansa Technik says it also provides component maintenance for the Asiana Boeing 777-200ER fleet, an integrated total component support for the carrier’s Airbus A320F and A350 fleets, and CF6 engine support and heavy maintenance for its Airbus A380 fleet.

cargo.one Lufthansa Cargo Auto Assigned AWBs

Lufthansa Cargo and cargo.one strengthen digital air cargo booking journey

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cargo.one Lufthansa Cargo Auto Assigned AWBs

Lufthansa Cargo and cargo.one have launched a joint innovation that removes the requirement for freight forwarders to hold valid Air Waybill (AWB) stock before making an air cargo booking.

Cargo.one says Lufthansa Cargo is the first of cargo.one’s airline partners to facilitate Auto Assigned AWBs in bookings. As part of a seamless booking experience, cargo.one users can now book Lufthansa Cargo’s extensive global capacities with an automatically assigned AWB. This results in quicker booking times and fewer booking errors, driving new standards for airlines in customer-centric digital distribution.

The progression of an air cargo booking has previously relied on the manual allocation of an AWB number, a process designed to reflect the paperwork of the past. In the case of a freight forwarder running out of AWBs, according to cargo.one, the time needed to request these from an airline has prevented them booking – resulting in a loss of business.

Ashwin Bhat, Chief Commercial Officer of Lufthansa Cargo, said: “At Lufthansa Cargo we are committed to finding new ways to drive our digital user experience across all of our distribution channels. Launching automatic assignment of Air Waybills with cargo.one is exactly the type of feature that helps us to differentiate in our digital journey and deliver freight forwarders the best possible outcomes and enhance their experience with Lufthansa Cargo.”

Oliver T Neumann, Founder and Co-CEO of cargo.one, said: “Users love cargo.one because it’s super easy to use, accurate and simple. Removing the pesky copy-pasting of AWB numbers makes booking simpler, faster and removes a source of errors. A small improvement with a big impact on our forwarders’ daily work.”

IAG cargo and cargo.one partnership

Cargo.one announces digital cargo bookings partnership with IAG Cargo

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IAG cargo and cargo.one partnership

IAG Cargo and digital air cargo bookings platform cargo.one have announced a global partnership to bring the carrier’s extensive cargo services to the real-time digital booking platform.

IAG Cargo has five sister airlines that include British Airways, Iberia and Aer Lingus. Freight forwarders using cargo.one will soon be able to search, book, amend and track IAG Cargo bookings within seconds.

As its next step in multi-channel distribution, cargo.one says the airline group chose its solution based on its industry prominence and ability to ensure seamless digital booking experiences. Cargo.one says its technology is on par with the carrier’s own high digital standards.

David Shepherd, Managing Director at IAG Cargo, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with cargo.one – an exciting partnership strengthening the digital development of IAG Cargo. This partnership is the latest step in our journey to transform the way we do business, making it easier than ever for our customers to book their freight online with IAG Cargo.”

Moritz Claussen, Founder & Co-CEO of cargo.one, said: “As a partner, IAG Cargo is a powerhouse and is well known for continuous innovation. Both companies share a proven instinct for building digital options that elevate customers and improve outcomes. IAG Cargo offers us exciting opportunities to co-innovate and hit new heights for digital efficiencies and service delivery. With our combined expertise, freight forwarders booking with us can look forward to an outstanding end-to-end experience.”