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Family Aid 2020
   Vol. 20 No. 31
Wednesday August 11, 2021

Geoffrey D. Arend

     Air Canada Cargo has announced it will add all-cargo aircraft to its fleet beginning later this year as the only North American combination carrier to do so in the near future.
     That is great news for air cargo and means Air Canada is transforming an almost moribund North American cargo scene by turning the all-cargo freighter service potential into reality and, something to watch and be excited about.
     Other North American big carriers seem worried about the cold instead. The rest of the world keeps cool by taking a nap. We wonder why air cargo elsewhere seems to be no better off in terms of management commitment than it was before the COVID-19 pandemic, despite worldwide acclaim that lauds delivery of life-saving vaccines and other PPG’s everywhere? At least from an industry manpower and marketing perspective, airlines seem to be oblivious of the undeniable importance of air cargo and seem to prefer mourning the defunct air passenger bonanza than banking on the air cargo stringer.
     “We really like what Air Canada Cargo did. They've livened up the all-cargo landscape for everybody by opening the door up wide to allow in some fresh air. As far as several other air carriers are concerned, it’s tough to figure out what's going on.” This is the comment we heard through the grapevine, which made us think and imagine what goes on behind the scenes.
     We know that the airline business has been challenged as maybe never before by the global COVID-19 horror show, driving the passenger business, which is so much of what the airlines do, into a terrifying black hole.
     We get it. The revenue stream that drives domestic and international aviation business has shifted, with governments everywhere propping up their carriers for the past two years in one form or another. This is not a strategy and in the long run things are bound to change, as Alitalia had to learn lately, with no spoonful of sugar . . .
     But the air cargo business has shown itself to be a savior to millions like at no other time since the Berlin Airlift in 1948. The city was saved showing the exceptional power of air cargo to the minds of millions around the world.
Every day people are aware and watching and talking everywhere about air cargo as never before, but this current ground swell of publicity for air cargo, struggles to become a beacon to all.
     The epic images of the cabins stuffed with all sorts of cartons should be a clarion call to all of us in the industry. The truth is that the air cargo industry has been handed a cookie of worldwide acclaim and a once-in-a-generation opportunity. There seems to be only one catch, “cargo has no legs”: you need to be really proactive and resourceful to lift it to the air, you cannot wait for cargo to erupt from the aircraft and let the airport channel that human lava into border management services.
     Yes, you need to be proactive and organized to handle cargo. Until such time as the Internet of Things will enable a carton of stuff to make its booking and get itself loaded into the belly of the aircraft you need forwarders, truckers, cargo handlers, etc.
     Organized air cargo needs to get together, demand support and otherwise work as never before to get the word out about how crucial the airlift is for this ailing planet. Building a resilient, environment-conscious and judicious cargo business is the duty of the young airline professional and will ensure her or his future in this industry and beyond. Air cargo is a great teacher and these young guys will be able to make use of their experience in many other areas as well.
     It may be less difficult than it appears. Right now, it's not about having a conference or a webinar listening to some bobbing heads talk on a computer screen. It's about cooperative action and us getting together as an industry, putting our shoulder to the wheel and working together, spending time developing a supportive effort to advance what we're doing in air cargo to get the word out as loud as we can. Cargo people need to convince management that they need to pay more attention and respect and help us advance this industry.      At the end of the day, the courier industry invented “first class” in cargo business nearly two generations ago and made some very good business out of it.
     So let us get some ideas out of the upper deck and get the cargo moving for its own, remarkable worth.
     The early retirements and cutbacks in air cargo amongst companies, and notably IATA Cargo, at the time of our greatest surge in history is simply inexplicable. Air cargo is not a danger to be afraid of, it is an opportunity for continuous and thriving business.
     Air cargo needs an old time rolled-up sleeves sales job all along the line to both industry bosses and the general public to generate yet untapped revenues and success. This is no time to roll over and play dead. This month of August as we get ready for the Fall and Winter we also need to get off our duff and sell the stuff.
     The industry that saved millions of lives everywhere in the world and has been the only steady and growing part of the carrier business for the airlines in the past two years now needs to proactively embrace its future, in a whole new light.
     History demands nothing less. Listen, we can hear the parcels humming . . .

Releye Container

  Everybody loves something new. Out comes a product with all the bells and whistles as the the flaks and p/r types open up their thesaurus looking for new superlatives.
  So here we separate the wheat from the chaff for an unbiased view from a guy that knows more about cans and where to kick them than anybody else.
  Bob Rogers at ULD Care, simply put, is the go to guy here as he leans in about that new Envirotainer Releye.
  “The ‘type’ of unit . . . eg an RLP which is essentially the base dimension ( 60.4” by 125”) of typical LD6 container, or 2 LD3 containers . . . the equivalent ‘dry’ unit (ALF or LD6) are very popular with a great number of airlines, as they provide a significant cargo capacity while not requiring the use of a pallet space . . . this base size unit also assists with weight and balance as it enables the positioning of a heavier cargo unit at the rear of the aft hold which is typically not set up for pallets.
  “As far as the temperature control capabilities, I can only be impressed at the continuing innovation in this area.
  “It’s not so many years ago that a typical such unit relied on some blocks of dry ice to keep things cool—now the tech is amazing.
  “The only point I would make is that the folks on the ground handling these increasingly sophisticated pieces of equipment need to raise their game when it comes to understanding the need for proper handling practices, both on and off airport.”

chuckles for August 11, 2021

Air Canada Conversion to Freighter

Matthieu Casey and Sookie      When Air Canada Cargo put out the news late last month underscoring the best air cargo quarter the airline has ever seen we sat up and took immediate notice.
     Matthieu Casey, Senior Director, Cargo Global Sales and Revenue Optimization could not have been happier and remains so.
     “We’re tremendously proud of the strongest quarterly results Air Canada Cargo has ever seen,” Matt told us.
     “Our team achieved a record $358 million in Cargo revenue for the second quarter, which represents an increase of $89 million, or 33% compared to the same quarter in 2020.
     “We’re relieved to see our passenger network starting to rebuild and continue to provide cargo-only, flying in markets where capacity is still constrained.
     “With the arrival of our first 767 freighters in Q4, the combination of these, our continued cargo-only flying and passenger flights resuming, paints a strong portrait for the rest of the year,” Matt said. Canada allowing fully vaccinated people from the USA to enter the country beginning yesterday should help boost those AC numbers.

Positive Feedback

     “The feedback has been tremendously positive and considering these initiatives are focused on maintaining stable and robust cargo capacity for our customers, we are delighted although not surprised to see this positive reaction and the momentum it has created in our growth.
     “Our focus on maintaining capacity and high service levels on strong trade lanes is a win-win that our customers have noticed and been vocal about.”

Digitization A Must

     “I cannot think of much that could justify any stoppage or slowing in this effort, considering how beneficial it is on so many levels throughout the entire logistics chain and across our industry.”
     “It’s a no-brainer!
     “We’re absolutely invested and focused on all levels of digitization within Air Canada and are building the right team to support that effort as it continues to evolve.
     “This is not unlike many of our industry partners with whom we’re working with, from e-freight to API connectivity.
     “We’re all hopeful that this momentum picks up across the entire industry and gets the necessary traction from industry bodies that are leading the wider collective effort.”

What’s Next?

     “Although these efforts are well under way, we continue to be focused on the arrival of our first freighters, due to enter the fleet later this year.
     “We’re equally focused on our ongoing investments to significantly improve and modernize our major hubs, including a new 34,000 square foot cold chain facility in our Toronto hub to be completed by Q4 of this year.”

On The Road Again

     “We have started traveling again and intend on attending industry events where relevant and possible.
     “Web meetings have been and continue to be useful in certain instances, but I don’t think they can bring the same value that in-person meetings can.
     “I just don’t believe that the level of productivity and strong interaction that occurs in person, can be recreated with virtual (or face-to-screen) meetings.”

Air Cargo More Global Awareness

     “I am often surprised at how little is known about air cargo’s role in the global economy and supply chains around the world, how it works and the difference between belly and freighter.
     “Air cargo allows us to buy asparagus in New York in the winter and it’s how vaccines are being shipped to end the pandemic.
     “I’m tremendously proud of what we accomplish as an industry, and it would be great if more people knew about our great industry.”

Matt’s Aviation Timeline 25 Years

     Matthieu Casey joined Air Canada 11 years ago, but he has been in aviation for close to 25, 18 of which were in Cargo.
     “I started in Cargo as a product specialist for business intelligence services at IATA in the early 2000s.
     “The love affair with air cargo was instant. Someone once told me that it must be easier dealing with air cargo than passengers because it doesn’t talk back, which is of course completely false, because everything we do in air cargo has a story behind it and many, many voices!
     “From life-saving medication, vaccines or organs, to factory and supply chain integrity or fresh produce, air cargo is immensely important to us all and the passion we see throughout our industry is testament to that,” Matthieu Casey concluded

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TIACA Cancels November Summit
High Flying Air Canada

Pumping TrafficTIACA Executive Summit scheduled for November 8-10 in San Francisco is postponed and will take place on March 22-25, same location. Check for further developments here . . . Atlas Can’t Lift This?—Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings held an earnings call last Thursday but before that happened Robert Kirchner, trustee for the International Aviation Professionals (IAP), Teamsters Local 2750, sent out a call to arms over deeply-held beliefs amongst many Atlas pilots that company leadership “is creating an uncertain future built on half-truths, misinformation and a lack of transparency. Why is Atlas unable to hire new pilots to fill all the training spots?” said Kirchner. "How will Atlas move the cargo of an expanding customer base with such a serious pilot shortage? How can Atlas' out-of-date pilot contract attract the pilots needed to grow Atlas if airlines with much better contracts are having trouble recruiting? Atlas is bleeding pilots, threatening its ability to deliver products for its customers,” he declared . . . Look out for Number One. Turkish Air Cargo’s big bold splash in everyone’s media recently over some IATA figures that in June the airline landed in third place amongst world airlines in FTKs is certainly something to crow about. Turkish CEO M. Ilker Ayc¦ said: “We are proud of Turkish Cargo and its rapid flight to its goals”. Was this a solid landing or a flash in the pan? Turkish seems to have had many more planes in the air sooner than others, as recovery from COVID continues. In Europe, as example, only Ryanair has more flights. Long- term watch managing that jump from sixth place in FTKs to number three worldwide. For his part, Ayci has no doubt: ”I believe that Turkish Cargo will carry our flag to the top,” he assures . . . Busiest European airports in July were Amsterdam, off 17% as compared to 2019; IGA Istanbul Airport, -27%; Paris/Charles-De-Gaulle, -42%; Frankfurt, -45 % as compared to pre-pandemic . . . Envirotainer Releye RLP (see item above) now aboard Swiss Airlines Cargo. The ”new” container offering claims reduced CO2 emissions and improved environmental performance and less weight via a lightweight material design . . . Looks like that CNS Partnership Conference scheduled for Miami at The Marriott Turnberry on August 29 -31 is still a go, despite mounting concerns over the uptick of COVID-19 cases in Florida. We are told that about 40% of regular attendance should be the number of participants that by our reckoning means less that 400 Jan Krems and Jason Berrypeople. FlyingTypers also learned that some carriers will be manning chalets to meet customers but is thought that local staff will be in attendance. We hear that Air Canada’s Jason Berry and United’s Jan Krems are scheduled to be panel guests, but whether that will be in person or virtual is not known at this time. More CNS Partnership, to sign up or for the info line up at . . . Virgin Atlantic Cargo and Delta Cargo have renewed their cargo handling contract with dnata at seven UK hubs for another five years. The contract covers ground handing and export services from the airlines’ joint London Heathrow hub and Manchester Airport as well as regional cargo gateways London Gatwick, Aberdeen, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Newcastle. In a joint statement the airline partners said, “The airlines’ cargo operational and customer teams have so far benefited from working under one roof, sharing ways of working which has supported significant growth for the cargo sectors of the two carriers in the last year.” . . . Avianca Holdings has appointed Gabriel Oliva as executive vice president and head of its cargo unit. Oliva previously served as senior vice president for North America, Europe and Asia Pacific for Latam Cargo. He will take up the role on August 18, and will also oversee Deprisa – Avianca’s last mile delivery business – alongside Susana Argueta, and will hold a seat on the management team . . . New direct data connection between Wise Tech’s CargoWise platform and Qatar Airways Cargo, reports Guillaume Halleaux QR Chief Officer Cargo, “will eliminate multiple intermediary data exchange points between freight forwarders and airline operating systems. “It will also support growth by removing technical risk and reducing costs. This initial step delivers a strong foundation for on-going product and technical connectivity between Qatar Airways Cargo and our substantial pool of customers,” Guillaume declared . . .

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Ocean Containers

Nils Haupt     We have met dozens of public relations types during our half century on the air cargo beat.
     The best, most prolific and easily in tune, whenever the song is sung, is Nils Haupt.
In fact were there an organization of the best public relations consul in the business, Nils Haupt would have to be named Chairman of The Board.
     When he handled all the news for mighty Lufthansa Cargo, his style and elan were easily matched by his deft human touch with care and concern and decency every step of the way.
     I have thought, ever since the day Nils stepped down from that post at Lufthansa Cargo, that the German carrier in letting him move on, shot itself through the foot.
     Maybe the times were changing but Nils was always on top of it and as said, in the case of airlines in either passenger or cargo, was the best in the business.
     In fact, to lay this out even further, not since the heyday of Tom Cole at Boeing who, like Nils, was a runaway master with the press when the B747 was launched, have we seen this kind of talent.
     In baseball terms, Nils at Lufthansa Cargo was like they had a batsman like Babe Ruth in the middle of the line-up lifting everyone.
     Well Lufthansa’s loss was HLAG’s gain. Today Nils is comfortably situate and working his magic as Head of Corporate Communications at Hapag-Lloyd AG.
     Here Nils looks back and leans in, delivering some perspective from Hamburg and elsewhere to his journey through these past pandemic months.
     Welcome back as always, Nils!

FT:   What do you want your customers to know about HLAG right now?
NH:  Now we are even stronger after having merged with Africa specialist NileDutch.

FT:   How has pandemic changed things for your offering?
NH:  Capacity is extremely tight and empty containers are scarce. This might last until Q4 or even longer.

FT:   What surprised you during the past 18 months?
NH:  How bad seafarers have been treated by governments and authorities. Some of them had and have to stay onboard more than a year.

FT:   Do you intend to attend trade shows during 2021? Explain?
NH:  We will – if the pandemic situation allows. Trade shows are important and can´t be replaced by digital solutions. People crave for meeting each other again.

FT:   Who are the heroes? What can we all do better?
NH:  The seafarers. We can all increase our amount of humility and gratitude. The pandemic showed that life is very precious and many families and individuals were hit hard. We shouldn´t take our privileged lives for granted.

FT:   Transportation, including ocean seems focused at this point in time on digitization of transport documents and payments. One could argue that this is an issue that IATA institutes and advisory bodies and others have been discussing for two decades or more with no breakthrough. What justifies this stop and go approach in your view?
NH:  Nothing.

FT:   Historically logistics have not enjoyed ample gender balance. However, the pressure to introduce greater diversity in terms of cultural background, which was perceptible years ago, seems to have vanished, is this correct? Is there a strategy to increase the diversity among staff?
NH:  We started a diversity campaign within Hapag-Lloyd – and we aim to introduce a wide range of voices, some of which are often muted, hidden or simply unexpected. In doing so, our purpose is not to criticize or promote one position over another, but to create a forum in which new voices can be heard as well as to prompt reflection on and discussion of the issues touched upon in a spirit of inclusiveness and mutual acceptance. Our portraits included voices from LGBTQI+ community, gender equality, Black lives matter movement, mentally and physically handicapped people and many more.

FT:   What is your message to someone considering a cargo transportation career?
NH:  Go for it. The world will need you – and you will get to know the world.

FT:   Is there any other point you wish to make or any issues you consider crucial in your strategy to meet future challenges?
NH:  Be humble. Be open. Embrace life. Trust in your people – and trust in yourself.

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Vol. 20 No. 28
Tokyo Olympics Heat Up
Virgin Cargo On Pandemic
Talking It Up Lying Down
Chuckles for July 20, 2021
Don't Count Out Hong Kong
PumpingTraffic for July 20, 2021
Never Forget Flight 800

Vol. 20 No. 29
Irresistible Virgin Cargo
Chuckles for July 28, 2021
Oh! By Golly Here Comes Kale
Pumping Traffic for July 28, 2021
Letter from Hong Kong
Buck Moon

Vol. 20 No. 30
Dr. Yang & The Optics Of Logistics
Chuckles for August 4, 2021
Sky Bridge Hong Kong
Memories of a Trabi and Friedrich The Great

Publisher-Geoffrey Arend • Managing Editor-Flossie Arend • Editor Emeritus-Richard Malkin
Film Editor-Ralph Arend • Special Assignments-Sabiha Arend, Emily Arend

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