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   Vol. 17 No. 54
Monday August 27, 2018

Virgin Cargo

Jacques Ancher and granddaughter

Retirement 101. Pictured at home in the Netherlands, Jacques Ancher was featured in our issue last Friday. Here in a letter are some thoughts from a beautiful mind for logistics and air cargo as Jacques takes things farther.

RE:   Jacques Ancher The Thought Leader

Dear Geoffrey,

     An addiction . . .
     Your article last week was a surprise. But it is always nice to be reminded of the people and the fascinating airline industry.
     It is extremely difficult to be specific (with a cargo overview of today) when you have been out for 18 years.
     My general feeling is that people are doing a fine job by optimizing cost and revenue, filling the large cargo space of the many aircraft.
     At the same time the industry lags behind in transparency, access and automation.
     I don’t think this is the time for pioneering major changes in air cargo, except for innovation in automation.

The Addiction

     When KLM decided to change the direction of the company at the end of the last century, it became obvious that our cargo ambitions could not be further developed.
     Our plan to become a completely separate business could not be implemented.
     A reason for me to retire and I did that “cold turkey.” It was not only best for me personally, but also for my successor and the next generation of cargo people.
     (Our management group from that period still meets for dinner once a year. Happy to report that all of those people made a successful career in and outside the industry.)

Speaking Out Again

     Until today, my retirement and silence on industry affairs was only broken when I received the TIACA Hall of Fame Award, in Istanbul in 2014.

Too Many Empty Cargo Aircraft

     During that event, I emphasized the problem of cargo being a by-product with the example of the short-distance aircraft.
     I reckon today there are approximately 35,000 of those airplanes flying their routes every day with empty cargo space.
     So here is a continued subject for discussions and questions.
     Is the fact that these aircraft have not yet been adapted an indication of how difficult it is to make changes in the industry?
     Rising handling costs, reduced rates and pressure on the turn-around time will snowball the effect of empty space to more routes and other aircraft.
     I do not think I made this point clear at TIACA Istanbul.

Action But No Reaction

     The other point I mentioned, and reported by you was the need for continued innovation.
     While on the passenger side, new entry carriers forced the industry to react, we in cargo admired the fast growing integrators but failed to act.
     Now in 2018 a few of the largest customers are flying their own aircraft.
     In my mind there are a few reasons for our behavior.

Too Much IATA

     Of course, as I said earlier one of them is that air cargo remains a by-product.
     The other one is that the airlines and the forwarders are still holding each other hostage.
     I firmly believe that the attractiveness of the industry makes it hard or perhaps impossible to accept change.
     There is still too much IATA on our mind.
     Please give my regards to Sabiha and let’s hope that we are still around when the first “no pilot flight” takes place.
     Logically this will be a cargo plane.

chuckles for August 27, 2018

Turgut Erkeskin and Emre Eldener
     Our correspondent Marco Sorgetti delivers an exclusive homage here to one of the most important and emerging leaders in transportation today, Turgut Erkeskin.
     Very quietly and with great determination, Turgut has emerged from his family business in Turkey as a leading freight forwarder on the international stage.
     Having served in top management of UTIKAD, the organization of freight forwarders in Turkey, Turgut has shown outstanding ability in leading the way on many fronts, while organizing and expanding the role and prospects of freight forwarders.
     Through it all, Turgut remains steadfast and unflappable. His quiet determination is underscored with an easy style as he is always ready to embrace new ideas and make friends on his journey to build transportation.
     When you think of where we are today, Turgut is tomorrow.

First & Lasting Impressions

     The word that comes to my mind when I think of Turgut is impressive.
     That is precisely the impression I had when we first met.

Since 1964

     Let me explain: Here is a man born in Turkey in 1964, who finished Sisli Terakki High School in 1980, graduated from Istanbul University Faculty of Economics in 1984, then continued his education abroad to improve his command of foreign languages.
     In 1985 Turgut joined a leading maritime enterprise active in both sides of the Bosphorus and in 1988 opened his own company in Istanbul.
     He married Elif, a charming mother of two, who is now vice president in his company with responsibility in Sales and Marketing.
     One could ask: what is so impressive about it?
     Please, allow me to explain this with my little story.

Surprising Istanbul

     If you ask which is Europe’s largest city, some would say London, others Paris or Moscow, few would reply correctly: Istanbul, which is listed the largest European city by most resources.
     That is where Turgut lives and where he graduated when he was just twenty years old. He became a successful entrepreneur at the age of twenty-four, creating Genel Transport (

Genel Covers A Lot Of Ground

     The meaning of Genel in this case is certainly far from generic, as the company deals with aerospace, healthcare and life science, chemicals, live animals, heavy lift, and project cargo.
     I cannot think of a more challenging mix of specialities in the fine art of freight forwarding.
     All of it is handled by a team of over 100 professionals in six locations in Turkey, a good recipe for a successful endeavour.

Turgut Erkeskin and Seref KazanciThe Pillar Of UTIKAD

     Let us go back a few steps. Young Turgut (age 22) immediately became involved in UTIKAD, the leading Turkish freight forwarders’ association and, starting in 2002, when the FIATA World Congress opened its doors to one of the finest terraces on the Bosporus to throw a party all of us remember with some nostalgia.
     Turgut says, “I was simply impressed and I felt a responsibility towards UTIKAD that I had to get involved in FIATA’s activities, rather than just enjoy the benefits of being a member.”
     This sounds to me like the fine statement of a generous mind, in its complete simplicity.
     Not so long ago UTIKAD validated its educational program with FIATA and this requires a very big organizational effort in an organization.
     I remember Turgut’s knowing smile, which he displayed on behalf of his organization: it was clear that his pride was theirs and vice versa, a natural successful symbiosis.

Major Role At FIATA

     Turgut is now FIATA’s Senior Vice President (i.e., one step before the presidential role) and his age suggests he still has plenty of energy to spend in FIATA.

Elevated First In Chamber

     You may also wish to know that Turgut has been the first forwarder ever to be elected in the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce Transport Committee in 2005, occupying a prestigious position traditionally reserved for the big shots of Turkish entrepreneurship, which only meant ships, trucks, trains, and planes for several decades.
     Turgut also spent three terms as President of UTIČKAD between 2010 and 2016.
     In 2012 he became the firm hand behind UTIČKAD ’s decision to organize another FIATA Congress in 2014, beating the clock by 12 months and thus carving his permanent seat in my heart as one of the best people you could deal with, full of enthusiasm and realism at the same time.

Geoffrey Arend and Turgut ErkeskinYou Got To Have Heart

     When Cavit Ugur (DG of UTIKAD and Turgut’s right arm during his tenure as President) had an accident that impeded his progress in the organization of the World Congress, Turgut simply took some of the responsibilities and handed them back to Cavit when he was able to jump back on the saddle.
     This did not prevent us from having a couple of wonderful dinners on the terrace looking out from Europe into Asia, yet meeting every single footstep in the preparation precisely on time.

Life One Step At A Time

     So here you have a picture illustrating why the adjective impressive comes to mind: Turgut simply ticked all the boxes that life presented him, on time or earlier than expected.
     When you speak to him you have the impression you can totally rely on this man, and he will not disappoint you.
     This is probably the trait that won his wife’s heart who is (in Turgut’s words) his “biggest support.”
     Turgut notes “working for so many associations takes a great deal of your time . . . time from your business and private life.”
     “I have never ever heard any complaint from my wife, but she was and is always behind [these choices].”
     That is a trait the pair may have in common: in several years, I have never heard Turgut utter a single complaint, despite the nature of the situation. As I said in the beginning: impressive.
     If you plan to travel to Delhi for 2018 FIATA World Congress you will surely meet Turgut Erkeskin, an icon in the flesh.
Marco Sorgetti

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Jet Airways
The good news is that the Naresh Goyal-led Jet Airways is the only carrier from India that figures among the top 50 world ranking cargo carriers in 2017.
Jet holds 43rd place in international cargo with 885 (FTK million), 23rd place in domestic cargo with 161(FTK million) and 42nd place overall with 1046 (FTK million).

Now The Bad News . . .

     FlyingTypers has learned that something might change at Jet in 2018, its 25th year of existence.
Vinay Dube According to several media reports the carrier is facing severe headwinds and, according to some reports, could not operate beyond 60 more days.
     Jet Airway’s CEO Vinay Dube takes an opposite view, stating in a recent press release:
     “Jet Airways (India) Limited would like to clarify that recent media reports about the sustainability of the airline are not only factually incorrect, but also malicious.
     “The airline also denies any conjecture of a stake sale.”
     The statement also mentioned that “Indian aviation is experiencing strong growth and Jet Airways is well placed to be a part of this growth story.”
     In line with the company's stated focus of creating a healthier and more resilient business, it has been implementing several measures to reduce costs as well as realize higher revenues, for desired business efficiencies.

Dube Dube Do

     Dube also said that despite the high growth environment, “the aviation industry is currently passing through a tough phase given a depreciating rupee and the mismatch between high fuel prices and low fares.
     “Jet Airways has been in existence for over 25 years and through the years has been successful in combating such business volatility.”

Jet Airways At a Loss

  Jet Airways posted a quarterly loss today, its second consecutive negative financial report.
  The airline said that it is adding money (no amount revealed) and cutting costs aimed at delivering 20 billion rupees as it seeks to turnaround its business.
  Partly (24%) owned by Etihad Airways, Jet operates in the world’s fastest-growing aviation market, but lost 13.23 billion Indian rupees ($188.76 million) in Q2, the three months ended June 30.
  Speaking of Etihad, the wonder is how does that airline’s investment model survive after losses it encountered with now defunct Air Berlin, earlier Alitalia, and now Jet Airways?
  Jet blamed the depreciating rupee and an about 36 percent rise in global oil prices for the red ink.
  “The two significant proposals . . . infusion of capital and the monetization of the airline’s stake in its Loyalty program bode well for the long term financial health and sustainability of the airline,” assures Jet Airways Chairman Naresh Goyal.

Behind The Story

     While all Indian carriers are going through tough times, sources say Jet has been pushed into a corner.
     The airline had to defer its first-quarter financial results during its Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) held recently in Mumbai to today, August 27.
     The results were pushed back “pending closure of certain matters.”
     In fact, sources say Jet’s financial crisis led to the management deciding on pay cuts of up to 25 percent.

Start & Stop

     However the paycut was rolled back almost as soon as it was announced, with Goyal saying in a tearful televised address that he could not sleep thinking about the proposed salary cuts and hence would cancel such plans.

Severe Cost Cutting

     Nevertheless, Jet Airways has begun a cost-cutting process by offering pink slips to more than a dozen-odd technical support staff in Mumbai and Delhi.
     The airline has gone on record to say that it has been evaluating various funding options to meet liquidity requirements on priority.

Cash Squeeze

      But Jet Airways’ lenders are reluctant to extend additional loans to the cash-strapped airline ahead of a key report by the company’s financial auditor.
     It is not that Jet is not trying to get back into the game.

Geoffrey Arend, Naresh Goyal and Jean-Marc Janaillac

Historic AF/KL Cooperation

     At the end of November 2017, for example, Jet signed a landmark ‘Enhanced Cooperation Agreement’ with Air France-KLM for the development of their operations between Europe and India. A first in the history of Indian aviation, the agreement strengthens the partnership built between the three airlines since 2014 and spanned across code-share agreements as well as cargo between Europe and North America and Jet Airways’ hubs at Mumbai and Delhi in India via Air France-KLM’ hubs at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol.
     In addition to the airlines’ enhanced cooperation agreement, Air France KLM Cargo and Jet Airways Cargo also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that is aimed to strengthen their cooperation in the cargo sector.

Cargo Rising

     However, if Goyal is forced to cut corners it will be a pity. In London in November 2017, when the carrier launched its third daily Boeing 777-300ER flight from Mumbai to Heathrow, Vinay Dube pointed out how cargo was important for the airline.
     He said: “I see air cargo as an integral part of the business.
     “We have got an air cargo market, which is growing between India and the UK and have a base of cargo domestically that is growing in India and to the Far East, Middle East – whereever you look at it. 2017 has been a good year for cargo and we have seen good growth in many sectors.
     “Whenever we think of flying anywhere, cargo is an important component in the planning process, and what aircraft you deploy is extremely important as well.”
     Dube went on to elaborate that his cargo team had told him that perishables, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, readymade garments, leather products via Paris, London and Amsterdam were going on to the U.S., Latin America, Benelux, Germany and France.
     “Cargo is doing well for us,” he emphasized and mentioned that the carrier did not have any plans for freighters because “we are fine with our bellies.”
Tirthankar Ghosh

If You Missed Any Of The Previous 3 Issues Of FlyingTypers
Access complete issue by clicking on issue icon or
Access specific articles by clicking on article title
Vol. 17 No. 51
You Say Goodbye I Say Hello
Chuckles for August 17, 2018
Man In A Red Box
FIATA Delhi Bhat
Once Upon A Time@The Airport
FT082118Vol. 17 No. 52
Zhao Fengsheng Plays A Straight Bat
Chuckles for August 21, 2018
ULD CARE Delivers Code Of Conduct
JU-52 Back In The Air

FT082418Vol. 17 No. 53
Belt Road Boogie
Chuckles for August 24, 2018
Jacques Ancher The Thought Leader
Next Stop: New York City
Talking Pictures

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