Maersk takes to the skies with air freight offering

by Emily Atkins

A.P. Moller – Maersk is launching Maersk Air Cargo with a home base of Billund, Denmark.

The company has converted its in-house craft operator into Maersk Air Cargo.

Maersk last operated from Billund, Denmark’s second largest airport,  in 2005. Maersk Air Cargo will  deploy and operate five aircraft – two new B777F and three leased B767-300 cargo aircraft.

These planes were acquired at the same time that Maersk purchased airfreight forwarder Senator International in November 2021.

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 plans to have approximately one third of its annual air tonnage carried within its own controlled freight network. It will use owned and leased aircraft, following the model it uses for its ocean fleet. The remaining capacity will be provided by commercial carriers and charter flight operators.

“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,” said Aymeric Chandavoine, global head of logistics and services for A.P. Moller – Maersk.

The company says adding air freight will allow it to offer truly end to end cargo services.

“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,” said Torben Bengtsson, global head of air and LCL (less than container load) at A.P. Moller – Maersk.

Maersk Air Cargo is expected to be fully operational as of second half of 2022.