Despite the difficult economic environment and volatility in the global cargo market, AirBridgeCargo completed 2015 very well. The company has entered a zone of positive profitability and remains one of the fastest growing companies in the world.
AirBridgeCargo’s positive growth trend is based on the successful combination of several factors. It is launching new destinations, further improving network connectivity and introducing additional frequencies on current routes, where there is a shortage of freight capacity. Separately, it is worth noting the airline’s purposeful work to improve customer service.
AirBridgeCargo Airlines with a hub based in Moscow Sheremetyevo airport, serves cargo flows between Asia, Europe, the USA, and Russia. Customers have a choice of more than 600 weekly connections to ensure the delivery of their cargo between any points in the airline’s route network within 48 hours, including ground handling. According to an independent report by the C2K quality management system, AirBridgeCargo’s DAP (Delivered As Promissed) indicator of quality is 87%. Thus, it ranks among the most punctual airlines in the world.
Another advantage is the airline’s ability to carry a wide variety of specialist cargoes that require particular expertise, such as pharmaceuticals, live animals, perishables goods, and oversized cargo, etc. Against the backdrop of the slowing Chinese economy, in the China- Europe cargo transportation market, AirBridgeCargo saw a 9% decrease in 2015. However, due to the above factors, the airline managed not only to preserve but actually increase its transportation volumes by 3% to this destination.
In addition, AirBridgeCargo continued to actively diversify its business. In 2015, it expanded its route network in Asia to nine destinations by launching flights to Singapore and Hanoi. In Europe, Helsinki became a new destination, and in North America, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Anchorage joined the network.
For the first time, the airline launched flights to the West Coast of the USA across the Pacific, a timely prediction of global demand. The China-USA tradelane proved to be the most dynamic in the air transportation market in 2015, fuelled by both global factors such as the US dollar strengthening against the euro and the yuan, and local ones such as the strike action at American seaports in Q1 of the last year. Ultimately, AirBridgeCargo doubled its volumes to this in 2015 compared to 2014.
During 2015, AirBridgeCargo performed 11,592 flights and transported 618,000 tonnes of cargo – 71.4% higher than a year earlier. Cargo turnover increased by 27.3% to 4,135.2 million tonne-kilometres. The industry as a whole grew only by 2.7%.
Strong results were also achieved in the transportation market from Europe to the USA and in the opposite direction, seeing AirBridgeCargo’s tonnage increase by 223% and 86% respectively over the year.
In 2015, the airline continued to invest in its fleet with the addition of two more latest generation Boeing 747-8 Freighters. Aircraft of this type offer the increased lifting capacity and improved operational efficiency, producing customers with the best ratio of cargo volume to weight.
The activities of the company were highly appreciated by its customers. According to the results of an open vote among industry professionals organised by the leading industry publication Air Cargo News, AirBridgeCargo was recognised as the world's best All-Cargo Airline of the Year. In addition, Payload Asia magazine named AirBridgeCargo as 'Airline of the Year', based on online voting by its 18,000 readers.