As we leave summer behind and enter the very beginning stages of what many hope will be a busy fall and winter for those in the air cargo supply chain, we decided to take a look at how carriers and forwarders stacked up last year using freshly released rankings from International Air Transport Association and Armstrong & Associates.
None of the rankings contained any earth-shattering revelations — there was no changing of the guard, and, for the most part, the carriers and forwarders you’d expect to see at the top finished at the top. Both listings, however, contained a few new entries toward the bottom. These are companies who decided, last year, to dedicate themselves to cargo. They found a way to make airfreight work for them in a down market. While most prognosticators see flat growth for the air cargo industry until, at least, the end of next year, it will be interesting to see how these newcomers fair in the months ahead.
One thing that will certainly change, however, is the number of Asian carriers at the top of IATA’s ranking. The region has been hit hard this year, and Asian carriers are seeing significant losses. In the second quarter, Cathay Pacific Airways posted a huge decline in revenue in the first half of the year, after seeing a large profit in 2011. And Cathay is not the only carrier that has seen a tough road so far in 2012.
Speaking more specifically about the fall, I’ve been thinking a lot about the upcoming Air Cargo Forum, hosted by The International Air Cargo Association in Atlanta at the beginning of October. Of course, it’s not entirely about the host city, but it should be a nice way to highlight Atlanta’s contribution to the industry. Next month, we’ll have an all-encompassing Atlanta feature with interviews from air-cargo heavyweights based in Atlanta, and we’ll also be handing out an exclusive guide to the ACF during the event.
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