Air Cargo Europe Supplement

Record Participation from all over the world - ACE, the exhibition and conference for the global air cargo business, took place for the eighth time in 2017.


ACE 2017: Opening Day

As with every industry specific conference or exhibition, the opening address sets the tone for the days to come. Th is was no diff erent at Air Cargo Europe 2017, where from the word go, the introduction, opening address and panel discussion started the ball rolling on some of the hottest topics in the industry.

Already in its eighth year, the opening address for the exhibition and conference was delivered by Alexander Dobrindt, MP – Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Germany. Noting that “mobility will experience anticipated change,” Dorbrindt went on to say that the German government was increasing their investment in infrastructure.

Growth from industries such as aviation and logistics were a key factor in the decision, which will allow them to be better equipped to cater to the upward trends of transporting cargo. He also went on to speak about the evolution of cargo and highlighted the importance of increasing the integration and interaction with customers now – given the growing demands for the entire supply chain.

Alexander Dobrindt, MP – Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Germany

 

Challenging the Traditional Methods

Another hot topic that has been raising a lot of conversations in the industry is the evolution of players within the supply chain who are challenging the traditional methods of air cargo. An example being Amazon.com (Amazon) the American electronic commerce and cloud computing company that taking steps to deal directly with their own customers.

Obtaining the coveted spot of number one on Fast Company’s ‘World’s Most Innovative Companies’ Amazon was recognised for offering even more, even faster and smarter. According to Noah Robischon who interviewed Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, his strategy of continuous evolution is what has allowed the company to experiment in various areas – and continue rapid uninterrupted growth. Th is comes after the company opened a new worldwide air cargo hub in the Cincinnati / Kentucky airport.

Bernd Schwenger, Director Amazon Logistics/General Manager for Amazon in Germany was a part of the fi rst panel discussion fi ttingly titled “E-mobility, e-commerce, e-next? A new Vision for the future of logistics.” Known for their unconventional and out of the box approaches, many are still left with wondering what they will do next, as Schwenger gave nothing away during the discussion.

 

A Digital and borderless future

Digitalization, a topic that is also trending, was also heavily discussed at the exhibition and conferences, with a number of exhibitors showcasing new products and services they’re introducing to better meet customer demands.

Forwarding agents and logistics companies work in a dynamic environment that places high demands on economic, ecological and social sustainability. Digitalization is changing consumer behaviour as well as the production and sales strategies of industry and trade. As a result of innovations in processes and technology, new logistics solutions are being created. At the same time, the markets and the market participants are regrouping.

 

Opportunities and Hurdles

The big challenge for transport and logistics companies is that often opportunities and hurdles lie very close together: “Every company needs a ‘basic kit’ when it comes to digitalization because data are the new gold,” said Frauke Heistermann, Chief Digitalization Officer at Siemens Postal, Parcel & Airport Logistics GmbH. “But if each gold-digger just uses his own data for himself, then, in the end, all you´re left with is small change.” And keeping data to oneself is the wrong way—because that way the data gold just turns into a data graveyard. “Digitalization improves inter-company cooperation between the parties, but not everybody benefi ts to the same degree,” says Heistermann. “Digitalization opens up areas that have been closed off , and it links up all the participants with each other in a continuous way.”

Yet advantages such as improved delivery reliability or the avoidance of waste are not evenly distributed in the delivery chain: “Regardless of company size, the ability to integrate is a must for all partners in the delivery chain,” says Heistermann. “Th is includes, for example, automatic data exchange, but also the ability to think beyond one´s own immediate area, in order to ensure a smooth fl ow of goods and information.”

 

Transport and logistics 4.0

Th e Kempten-based logistics services provider Dachser presented itself at as a technological driver in the sector “We see ourselves as a network and information logistics company,” says Dr Andreas Froschmayer, Corporate Director, Corporate Development, Strategy & Public Relations. Logistics services have become a highly complex area, he points out. Th ose wanting to plan and manage supply chains in a transparent way and monitor the quality of the service, need qualifi ed employees, process expertise, coordinated transport and logistics networks and integrated IT systems, as well as corresponding data.

IT is becoming ever more important in the logistics sector. “Because software solutions are the connector between goods, processes, people, locations and automated components,” says Franz Bauer-Kieslinger, CEO of SSI Schäfer IT Solutions GmbH. “When it comes to processing a giant fl ow of data, it is the job of IT to integrate all the data in a harmonious, effi cient and user-friendly system.” The expectations and the demands of customers on intralogistics are increasing all the time – SSI Schäfer is meeting these demands and putting the focus on the further development of software solutions. “We are highlighting this expertise at transport logistic with our own IT booth, and thereby emphasising the high strategic relevance of software in in-company material fl ow,” says Bauer-Kieslinger.

 

Enhanced Connectivity within the chain

“Th e world of road freight transport is undergoing signifi cant change at the moment,” says Mikael Lundqvist, Director Strategy, Communication and Marketing at Scania Germany/Austria “Th e focus here is on sustainable transport solutions.” In shaping this change, digitalization and connectivity are playing a key role. Connectivity is a critical requirement in this development. “Today worldwide, over 50,000 Scania customers benefi t from detailed data on fl eet performance from a quarter of a million vehicles,” says Lundqvist. “Scania is now further developing its efficiency-improving services with the aid of the open and manufacturer-independent platform Scania One.” Th is is a comprehensive platform for all currently available and future services, for mobile and stationary end-devices as required.

 

The Effects of Politics

“Networking was another dominant theme at Transport Logistic 2017,” said Stefan Rummel, Managing Director of Messe München. “On show were future-oriented technologies in selfdriving vehicles, telematics, smart data and Cloud solutions.” Criticism was levelled at the protectionist tendencies of some nations. “Following Brexit and ‘America First’, the outcome of the election in France is a positive signal for the global logistics sector,” said Rummel, adding: “International exchange of goods, knowledge and ideas is an essential factor in prosperity.” Th e importance of this sector was also underlined at the opening event by Alexander Dobrindt, German Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure: “Logistics is and will continue to be a key factor in modern economies.”

 

Supply Chain VS Demand Chain

Bernd Schwenger, Country Director Amazon Logistics, said that supply chain was the wrong word, “it should be called demand chain, and the customer must be in the focus. Th e last mile is the biggest challenge in this.” In order to support the customers better, “Stakeholders must also be prepared to share their data,” added Stefan Karlen, CEO of the Panalpina Group. And Stefan Buchner, a member of the Divisional Board of Daimler Trucks & Head of Mercedes-Benz Trucks Daimler AG, said: “We are getting ever closer to our vision of seamless transport in the future. We are integrating all the processes and all those involved in transport.”

 

Record Participation from all over the world

Air Cargo Europe (ACE), the exhibition and conference for the global air cargo business, took place for the eighth time in 2017 and was integrated into Transport Logistic – the world’s leading trade fair for logistics, mobility, IT, and supply chain management. Members of the global industry meet at this top platform every two years in Munich. Th e 2017 edition of ACE saw a significant increase in the number of visitors and exhibitors. Th ere were over two thousand exhibitors who came in from over 60 countries, a fi ve per cent increase from the previous year; as well as over 55,000 visitors from more than 100 countries. Air Cargo Europe is considered as one of the biggest trade shows in the world.