AP Moller – Maersk has announced Maersk Air Cargo as the company’s main air freight offering serving the needs of its clients with a service model that heralds integrated logistics capabilities.

Maersk has chosen Denmark’s second largest airport, Billund as the freight hub for Maersk Air Cargo, with daily flights that will also enable creation of several jobs in the region. To this end, Maersk also announced its intent to enter into an agreement with the Flight Personnel Union (FPU) which is a part of the Danish Confederation and Trade Unions (FH).

From the Billund air hub, Maersk Air Cargo will progressively deploy and operate a controlled capacity of five aircraft – two new B777F and three leased B767-300 cargo aircraft. Three new B767-300 freighters will also be added to the US-China operation, which will be initially handled by a third-party operator. The new aircraft are expected to be operational from second half 2022 and onwards up to 2024.

Maersk’s owned controlled capacity, powered by Maersk Air Cargo, will make supply chain journeys more resilient and intuitive. As a standalone service, Maersk Air Cargo can help customers make the most of opportunities as it will enable movement of their shipments to the right place at the right time through a priority air transport channel. When combined with the integrated services provider’s ocean, inland, warehousing and customs services, it will power your supply chain in more ways than one.

“Air freight is a crucial enabler of flexibility and agility in global supply chains as it allows our customers to tackle time-critical supply chain challenges and provides transport mode options for high value cargo. We strongly believe in working closely with our customers. Therefore, it is key for Maersk to also increase our presence in the global air cargo industry by introducing Maersk Air Cargo to cater even better for the needs of our customers,” says Aymeric Chandavoine, Global Head of Logistics and Services, AP Moller – Maersk.

“Maersk Air Cargo is an important step of the Maersk air freight strategy, as it will allow us to offer customers a truly unique combination of air freight integrated with other transport modes. We see an increased and continued demand for air cargo both today and going forward as well as a growing demand for end-to-end logistics, why it is important for us to strengthen our own-controlled capacity and advance further on our air freight strategy,” says Torben Bengtsson, Global Head of Air & LCL (Less than Container Load), AP Moller – Maersk.

Maersk last operated from Billund in 2005. Now, the airport looks forward to welcoming Maersk Air Cargo, which is also expected to immensely support the growth of the West Danish business community.

“We have had growth, defied the corona and set a new record year in cargo in 2021. It does not happen without good partners, and we do what we can to make our partners good. Now Maersk Air Cargo enters the stage at Billund Airport and raises it a notch. We are incredibly proud that we are being chosen as Maersk’s European hub for air freight, and we look forward to developing the collaboration to even new heights,” says Jan Hessellund, CEO of Billund Airport.

Maersk’s ambition is to have approximately one third of its annual air tonnage carried within its own controlled freight network. This will be achieved through a combination of owned and leased aircraft, replicating the structure that the company has within its ocean fleet. The remaining capacity will be provided by strategic commercial carriers and charter flight operators.

The new air freight company is the result of the existing in-house aircraft operator, Star Air which has transferred activities into Maersk Air Cargo. Going ahead, Maersk Air Cargo will support the Star Air’s existing and new customers while facilitating end-to-end logistics for parent Maersk.

The process of transferring activities has received excellent support from customers, suppliers, employees and the Danish Civil Aviation Authority.


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