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   Vol. 23 No. 14

Tuesday March 26, 2024


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Peter Penseel

     Nice Picture, Nice Guy and Consummate Professional . . . Took this picture of Peter Penseel during Messe Muenchen Air Cargo Europe in 2019.
     Beginning June 1, Peter currently serving as COO at CEVA Logistics, assumes command at Delta Air Lines as SVP and President –Delta Cargo.
     Delta can only hope that “Lightening Can Strike Twice“, as here comes another air cargo superman who was born in the Netherlands, to an American flag airline’s top logistics post. Netherlands, the place where the culture for air cargo was driven by the likes of Jacques Ancher and Jan Meurer, who at KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Cargo developed an atmosphere that spawned some of the brainiest logisticians in the world.
     In fact, Jan Krems, (Netherlands born), who developed the program that kept United Airlines flying during the early days of the COVID pandemic, is currently serving as President of United Cargo.
     Peter, who brings more than 30 years of experience, including a stellar career in the Netherlands forwarding and logistics field to the post will be responsible for it all at Delta Cargo, from driving revenue and profitable growth, leading customer service, and ensuring all other components of the carrier’s cargo business.
     Veel Success Peter!

chuckles for March 26, 2024

Mark Albrecht, Peggy Guse, Jacques Leijssenaar, Jim Bellinder and Jan Krems

     We’ve gotten kind of used to having meetings that are described as roundtables that are not round or fireside chats minus the fire, but in Houston United Campfire Gathering got the job done and was electric.
     While Cookie prepared the meals over at the chuckwagon and mechanical bulls and line-dancing experts waited in the wings, United Airlines Worldwide Sales and Cargo Conference 2024 in early February, themed "Limitless New Frontiers" took off with both Cargo and Passenger Sales teams in Houston.
     Of course, Houston having been the home of Continental Airlines for some, the journey was a welcome back to some good, old-fashioned Texas hospitality, spending three days "Home on the Range” networking, and sharing how to better serve customers, and how to keep it all going as the commanding leader of innovative air cargo solutions amongst the airlines of the world today.
     Studying this homespun picture taken deep in the heart of Texas and the body language and the faces of these great relaxed people in their ten-gallon or four-quart hats, tells a story here that imagines its own flight of fancy.
     It's fun and business—the way life ought to be.
     “We celebrate our employees and the special affection we all have for each other and our business partners as well,” Jan Krems, President United Cargo (far right) notes as the High Sluices Drifter from Chicago surveys the scene.
     “How long I gotta stoke this fire?” says the great ragtime cowboy Jim Bellinder, Senior Regional Manager, Cargo Latin America sitting next to Jan in the room electric.
     “Happy to be in Houston,” Peggy Guse, Vice President Cargo Marketing, Customer Service & Alliances smiles on the panel.
     To Ms. Guse's left, Jacques Leijssenaar, the EMEIA boss man asks no one in particular:
     “All y' all know when the Line Dancing and the Mechanical Bull Riding starts up?”
     Mark Albrecht, Global Managing Director, Cargo Logistics sitting to the right of Peggy replies:
     “Whoa easy partner, Big fun is every minute here and you can’t beat that with a stick.”Yippee ki-yo-ki-yay!!

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Bella Donna—A Thoughtful Tally For Kale

Donna Mullins

     In a perfect world the following few lines would just make no sense. Yes, indeed, in a perfect world . . . We are talking about how much logistics, and air cargo in particular, is missing by overlooking women’s skills, but we are doing this sideways, as it is convenient at the Flying Typers. Women’s skills can be ignored knowingly or as a habit, in any case it is a missed opportunity at best. This is not the main concept of this article, but it cannot be ignored if you wish to fully understand its content.
     An accomplished businesswoman speaks hereunder and teaches us a few lessons. Listening to Donna Mullins is a learning curve. There was so much to learn!
     Instantly, my memory went all the way back to my elementary school: “mani in seconda” [i.e. hands in second positions] would have said my teacher in 1958. This picture – not my class, it is just internet repertoire, with thanks to those who posted this interesting material from a school in Milan in the ’50’s – shows the various positions of the hands (mostly wrong actually, according to the rather strict disposition we were supposed to comply with). Obliging kids in class to keep different positions with their hands was an expedient to deter any wrongdoing. We were 47 six-year-old restless kids that a fine lady, our teacher, was trying to contain within the boundaries of safety whilst at school in our classroom. In those days, education was mostly in the hands of women. In a way I am grateful for this, as this was such a perfect lesson in my youth.

     Accordingly, this story is much more about ladies and their role in our business than about 1958. So, let’s get started.
     This is what Geoffrey had to say when we were talking about the importance of women in our lives: “I was brought up by my mother and grandmother. Maria CaninoAs a publisher, I have always been keen on advancing women based on watching those two going to work in Manhattan from our home in Queens near Idlewild Airport (JFK) and hearing of the trials and tribulations of being a woman in business during the 1940s and 50s and onward. So 50 years ago (almost) when Air Cargo News began in March 1975 we started looking for women in the business and discovered Maria Canino (left) of Kuwait Airways at JFK and wrote about her. Ever since we have sought out women and brought them forward. I don't pretend to be any expert here, but I do think as an industry much more could be done to help women than just scheduling a women’s panel at trade shows.”
     This a beautiful mind’s cry for help and justice, at least this is what it sounds to me. Just listen to Geoffrey genuinely thinking of the advancement of the industry he so much loves! There is nothing else there and there is all that it takes. This is the very essence of the entire story: it is not about women per se, it is about the industry and the missed opportunities that ignoring their skills and specialities entails. I cannot agree more. I started in this industry when the two largest companies in town (Turin) were run by women, my boss was a woman and the heap of knowledge I have received from them in the early ’70’s is simply limitless. In between, I think something went wrong and I still cannot understand what and where, because nowhere is precisely the same in the world at this point in time. In 2024 we live in a world where it is not pointless to discuss the role of women in air cargo (and logistics at large) and it does make sense to question the fact that their role is not adequately recognised. That is what I meant: in a perfect world . . . well, it ain’t perfect.
     On this point, I daresay the only ray of sunshine I see from my window comes from my beloved FIATA. Not only the Geneva Secretariat banks on the work of an almost entirely female workforce, but in the last six months I have seen this group of ladies often take the floor and represent the association in public at different events. This is a very positive development in my view and surely FIATA’s DG, Stéphane Graber, has been working hard with my former association-employer to achieve this result. Yes, promoting women in the industry, in public in particular, despite their obvious skills and qualities, is still a job in this day and age and, boy, I know what I am talking about . . . Kudos to FIATA for what they are doing in this regard.
     Geoffrey went further in this comments: “I just know we can do better and I know the women in our readership by and large appreciate that we may be a bit dumb, but we are trying to tell their story. Marco, you are going to talk about Donna Mullins. Donna is a genuine feminist and can spot the real people a mile away. A trade show is no excuse for indecorous behaviour, but that is exactly what air cargo is in danger of falling into: the longer it allows women’s issues to be advanced and discussed at meetings with no action or what passes as advancement thinking action, which you can detect as fake a mile away . . . ”
    According to the website Globalia: “Even a few years back, the transportation and logistics industry used to be a completely male-dominated sector. The poor perception of career opportunities is a significant deterrent in this regard. In spite of representing around half of the global population, the role of women in this male-dominated sector used to be marginal for decades. Nevertheless, in the last few years, the increased focus on inclusion and gender diversity has seen an increase in women professionals in this sector, as well as in the efficiency of the industry. This only proves that the e-supply chain industry, as a whole, surely could do well with a more diverse workforce.”
     If this final sentence assessment sounds familiar, it should indeed. The words in one form or another serve as what most of us remember as takeaway from our last women empowerment sessions at one of our trade shows.
     As we know today Donna works for Kale Logistics Solutions as their person in the USA, after serving for many years as a totally engaged person in the business. Just another voice amongst many others, about a fine person decent and wonderful, she would be very helpful for the case of women in industry as you may have recently read in our – let me call it inclusive, not exclusive – story about women on the Indian Air Cargo scene.
     Now, after the meeting in Mumbai we just mentioned, this is Donna Mullin’s own voice, caught in the act: The Air Cargo 2024 Conference is a wrap and it was packed with information about air cargo possibilities and challenges. The opening address by Captain Houston Mills, UPS, was fantastic . . . my best take-a-way was his three simple suggestions on Gung Ho! Leadership model:
           1.   The Spirit of the Squirrel – Worthwhile work.
           2.   The Way of the Beaver – Independent work.
           3.   The Gift of the Goose – Encouraging work.

Dixie Chicks On Truckers Menu  In 2020 during the early days of the pandemic Donna marshalled a brave band of ladies to venture out with face masks, rubber gloves and proper social distancing to Hartsfield Jackson International Airport (HIJA) in Atlanta, where they delivered food to truckers who had nowhere else to go.

Air Cargo Facilities Challenge

There was much focus on airports and cargo throughput this year. Maybe because Congress has now been intimately introduced to the terms “air cargo and supply chain” since the pandemic and how the air cargo industry truly helped to save the world – really. The rapid movement of PPE and other needed supplies to combat COVID literally made the news. People who never had any idea about the business we do were suddenly aware of the importance of air cargo and the expedited efficiencies needed. So much so, there was a release of funding to airports for improvements in the Infrastructure Bill of 2023 totalling $25 billion . . . sadly, only a very, very small portion of that will be dedicated to cargo.
     “During the discussion panel on Air Cargo Facilities Development Challenges several areas were identified from weather, location, land space, municipalities, need, is there an airport cargo manager, and communication. Identifying the need was not so difficult, however, other challenges were bigger barriers. I suppose what I heard most was communication and when it starts (or in many cases does not) with the whole stakeholder community. Airports serve passengers and cargo and because cargo does not get to vote or complain, cargo is sometimes the afterthought in airport development and strategic planning. Airports need to realize the importance of cargo and the yield it brings to passenger carriers, as well as how much economic impact air cargo has in the immediate and surrounding regions of the airport. Kale Info Solutions being a provider of Cargo Community Systems, I was also very pleased to hear that when those communications start, and they should start very early in the planning process, technology providers such as ourselves must be at the table to help drive digitization to bring about more efficiencies in air cargo throughput. Global Regulations and Trade Impacts panel brought us updated information and recommendations for ensuring that our air cargo transactions are compliant with, not just U.S., but globally set regulatory requirements in other countries – even those that our cargo may only be transiting through. One of the most recent European air cargo rules is the ICS2.0 requirement. The need for electronic data interchange is broadened with advanced data requirements being expanded. Here too, Kale Info Solutions, being a technology provider, can assist forwarders, handlers, and airlines with advanced shipment data using our ACS (Airport Community System) platform.”

Women In Discussion

     Donna Mullins was clearly happy to note that “The Women’s event was fabulous. The attendance to the session – both women and men – just keeps growing which is wonderful to see. Impostor syndrome: I had never heard of it before. But if you want more information, just search for it on your favourite IE engine and you may find that at some point in your life you may have had one of them. The Five Types of Imposter Syndrome discussed by the panellists and attendees were:
          1. The Perfectionist
          2. The Expert
          3. The Genius
          4. The Soloist
          5. The Super-person

P.S. – imposter syndrome ain’t just for girls!"

Airport Cargo Congestion

     Then Donna Mullins continued on a more personal tone: “I was honoured to be on the panel ‘Navigating the Future: Technologies for Mitigating On-Airport Cargo Congestion’. Since developing and implementing technology for cargo congestion is a prime solution provided by Kale Info Solutions, I felt quite at home with my fellow colleagues. We discussed what an Airport Community System/Air Cargo Community System/Cargo Community System is. As you can see, with it having multiple names, what it does exactly, and how, can also be confusing. We discussed the stakeholders of the air cargo logistics chain and how each of them could benefit by implementing more technology to increase efficiencies within their respective business disciplines. We talked about how airports can play a role in adopting an ACS. Some airports do not have dedicated cargo managers and that causes challenges for the airports and their roles. Another factor in the airport’s role is how the airport is set up – whether they are a landlord only, with limited authority to require their tenants to use a system, or if they have the authority to choose a system and require the community to use it. We also discussed, is it a ‘community system’ if only one house is participating in the platform and not the whole neighbourhood? Kale has been instrumental in providing the technology engine for WFS’s ‘Time is Money’ Dock Management Program and we currently have our solutions at JFK, ATL and BOS stations with other locations to be rolled out this year. AGI has chosen a different provider and in DFW they have a different provider, too. DFW is the only U.S. airport that I know of which has purchased a system. PHL and RFD have contracted with Kale to offer our system to the stakeholders, but it was not procured by the airports. RFD will require that cargo stakeholders doing business in their airport to use the Kale system, however PHL will not. The success of the community system in these airports will be very dependent on the community’s willingness to participate – which, with all the benefits that can be obtained with a cargo community system, who wouldn’t?
     “Other discussions of the panel included how the government can participate and should. For example, a forwarder can have a completely paperless air cargo shipment, but one government agency still requires a paper document – TSA requires the CSD to be tendered in paper form to the handler (FAA also still requires a paper DG) – most all other government agencies with hold, release, or refusal authority are participants in ACE and receive and send electronic data to the stakeholder. With governments wanting upstream and advance data, the implementation of a cargo community system can help to accomplish that for better security targeting – and Kale has the solution to connect these stakeholders electronically transmitting ASI in a secure and encrypted platform.
     “It was also a time for myth busting. One of the panellists commented that the reluctance of an ACS was the fear of data sharing. I assured the audience that with Kale’s ACS in no way would carrier A see any of carrier B’s data and that the term data share is within and among authorized trade partners only.

Clear Roads At Airports

     “The final session of the conference was ‘The Airport Throughput Challenge & How Do We Manage Truck Congestion’. My simple and profound answer to this question: invite Kale Info Solutions to your airport cargo table and let us help with our digital solutions. We did an ESR for one of our trucking customers and found that with the Kale ACS they saved a substantial amount of driver labour cost, reduced CO2 emissions and the carbon footprint significantly, as well as saved hundreds of gallons of fuel because the drivers’ wait and dwell times were reduced and cargo throughput increase all with technology.”
     This excerpt is so dense and meaningful I simply could not interrupt or interfere in any way or manner. This is indeed a good lesson: a shining example of clear thinking, hand-on approach and wise, selfless advice provided in large amounts to those who wish to understand. It makes perfect sense that these statements come from a lady, as it is so typical for women to be profound, straight to the point and purposeful. This is exactly what we need now, trinkets can wait for dusting when there is time . . . Who can do better? We all listened with pricked-up ears and “mani in seconda”.
     Donna concluded her contribution in this manner: “Thanks so much for inviting me to give my inputs on the AC2024 event and in my final thought I’ll say, it is no secret that the air cargo logistics value chain needs to embrace more technology as a community. Some stakeholders are well into their automation journey, and some are still lingering. Regardless of where the stakeholder is in their digitization process, Kale Info Solutions can assist them.”
     So Donna Mullins closes her remarks on an appeal for more technology. Let me now jump into this discussion, if our readers allow, for a couple of lines. All too true, and, dear me, yes, we need more technology. Above all, we need women in the business who can show us, like Donna Mullins, the way forward.
     My personal wish? More constructive thinking, we need technology, we need investments; of course we need more women at the steering wheel, but we need many more people, regardless of their gender, with clear, selfless thinking to advance the industry of the future. Women and men who are willing to contribute and leave a legacy to their successors after they have left, a legacy that is a wealth of knowledge rather than a burden for development.
     Nobody is here forever and the best we can do is to build new generations of operators, in hope that what we have done contributes to their better conditions in future. This is what women have done for time immemorial and continue doing today as always. Women in logistics have a new generation of logisticians to foster. If the younger women and men in logistics listen to their wisdom and learn from them, the world of logistics and air cargo in particular will be a better place for everybody.
Marco L. Sorgetti/GDA

Brendan Sullivan, Tony Calabrese, Jo Frigger, Jan Krems

     And It’s not just Great Golf Opening Day Sunday at IATA's Cargo Network Services (CNS) Partnership Conference April 14-16.
     This is the 33rd CNS gathering and it is at The Gaylord Resort & Convention Center, in Dallas Fort Worth, Texas.
     This event grew up with one goal to give the airline forwarder partnership a chance to breathe without the USA crying anti-trust and it was the idea of Tony Calabrese, to put the airlines and forwarders together paving the way to a brighter reality.
     “When I started at CNS, the airlines and the forwarders, even the airlines and airlines, barely spoke to each other,” Tony said as CNS celebrated its 25th Anniversary in 2011.
     “What happened right from the very first Partnership Conference in 1986 is that everybody discovered, through understanding, that our supposed differences were more myth than fact,” Tony said.
     “CNS needs to maintain a strong voice for the airline forwarder partnership,” says Jan Krems, President of United Airlines Cargo.
     “We need our trusted organizations to bring us together and make sure that cooperation between all parties not only maintains a single standardized system in place, but also advances our offering through cooperation that touches every aspect of the logistics supply chain.
     “For all of us up and down the line in all aspects of our industry to be as good as we want to be, we need the unique opportunities for cooperation that the CNS advocacy offers working for the advancement and betterment of the entire logistics industry,” Jan added.
     In 2020 the late Joachim Frigger, Chairman of EMO Trans, who guided and built the fabulous success of that company, shared the freight forwarder view of why he supported CNS.
     “The formation of CNS always was and still is a great opportunity for meaningful dialogue between the airlines and freight forwarders,” Jo said.
     “We have always supported this goal and hope that going forward, a balanced view of all participants and their business interests can be maintained.
     “I do regret that CNS has only been created in the U.S. and that this model has not been expanded to other worldwide areas like Europe, Asia, Middle East, and Latin America.
     “The advantage of close cooperation between partners becomes more evident in today's global markets, as geopolitical developments create a great deal of division and uncertainty for all involved,” the late Jo Frigger concluded.
     “I’ll be there,” siad Brendan Sullivan, Director Cargo, IATA. He will be moderating the 'Sustainability Panel – Value to the Shipper' Panel and will be sure to have some words about the just concluded Hong Kong World Cargo Symposium.
     Words that endure from Messers Calabrese, Krems, Frigger and Sullivan as we consider the value proposition and hope that CNS Partnership Conference brings to air cargo every time it meets.
     See you in Big D April 14.

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