Air, Freight News

Atlas Air enters into long-term agreements

[ February 25, 2022   //   ]

Atlas Air, Inc., a subsidiary of Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc., is on the move with several important announcements.
On February 17 it entered into two agreements, one with one of the world’s largest freight forwarders, Kuehne+Nagel; the other, Cainiao Network, the logistics arms of Alibaba Group.
The deal with Kuehne+Nagel involves operating two of its new incoming Boeing 747-8 freighters on a global basis via a long-term, dedicated charter agreement. Atlas Air will commence operation of these aircraft following their delivery from Boeing, with one expected in the third quarter and the second in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Atlas Air operates one of the world’s largest fleets of 747-8Fs. The 747-8F provides 20% higher payload capacity and 16% lower fuel consumption than the very capable 747-400F. The two aircraft placed with Kuehne+Nagel are the last 747s Boeing will produce. Atlas ordered the four 747 production aircraft to capitalize on strong demand and deliver value for its customers.
“The Boeing 747-8F serves an incredibly important role in global airfreight, with advanced technology that allows for lower fuel consumption, higher capacity and unique nose-loading capability,” said Atlas Air Worldwide President and Chief Executive Officer John W. Dietrich.
The expanded partnership with Cainiao Network also announced on February 17 involves the addition of a new Boeing 747-8 Freighter under a long-term agreement to increase capacity on routes between China and the Americas.
This expansion builds upon Atlas Air’s partnership with Cainiao, and the new aircraft will enter service for Cainiao in the second quarter of 2022, linking China with the United States, Brazil and Chile.
“Cainiao is a leader in the fast-growing e-Commerce logistics market, and we look forward to continuing to support its global network with the superior and reliable service Atlas Air provides,” said Dietrich.
In November 2021, Cainiao expanded its partnership with Atlas Air to include daily charter flights operated between China and Latin America in response to the growth of cross-border trade between China and Latin America.
Also important is the January 27 announced by Atlas Air of an agreement to expand its partnership with Flexport, the technology platform for global logistics, to add a third Boeing 747-400 freighter to its existing fleet beginning in September 2022.
This agreement between Flexport and Atlas Air will broaden Flexport’s network of dedicated freighters to include service from Asia to Los Angeles (LAX), Miami (MIA) and soon, Chicago (ORD). The additional freighter will increase Flexport’s dedicated airfreight capacity from Atlas Air by 50% and allow for enhanced schedule flexibility as new origins and destinations are added in 2022 and beyond.
The move eastward across the United States will improve airfreight accessibility for global shippers and enable them to design airfreight networks that best serve their interests as part of strong, resilient multi-modal supply chain strategies.
“We look forward to enhancing our long-term relationship with Flexport as we continue to support the growth and expansion of its network with dedicated freighters,” said Michael T. Steen, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Atlas Air Worldwide. “Atlas Air is strategically positioned to serve Flexport with an unparalleled fleet of widebody freighters and our vast global footprint. Our team is pleased to deliver even more value to Flexport and its customers through the world-class service they can depend on from Atlas Air.”
Neel Jones Shah, Executive Vice President and Global Head of Airfreight at Flexport stressed how the strategic agreement will strengthen Flexport’s dedicated capacity network and provide global shippers with additional origins and destinations throughout Asia and the US, ultimately enabling them “to build more flexible and resilient supply chains.”