Etihad Cargo, the freight division of Etihad Airways, has been successful at the Air Cargo Week Awards in Shanghai winning the coveted ‘Cargo Airline of the Year’ award. This is the second successive year that the airline has won the award, having collected it in Munich in 2015.
The annual awards are voted for by the industry and presented during Air Cargo Europe in Munich or Air Cargo China in Shanghai. The awards are presented in nine categories ranging from ‘Airfreight Forwarder of the Year’ to ‘Cargo Airline of the Year’.
David Kerr, Senior Vice President of Etihad Cargo, said: “We’re delighted to be recognized by our peers and this is an award that we’re proud to win but it is also testament to a lot of hard work by the Etihad Cargo team during the last year, as we’ve grown the business, added new products and additional destinations to our global network.
“Being voted for by the cargo community means a lot to us and it underlines the approach we’re taking to our customers. We want to take that further during the year ahead and continue to deliver a first class, award-winning service to the different areas of the globe where we operate. We will be continuing to expand and have already added additional aircraft to our fleet in the first part of this year.”
The cargo division of Etihad Airways is continuing a strong performance into 2016. Freight volumes out of Europe have been performing well for the carrier during the first quarter, with +11% growth demonstrated. That performance has been led by markets in Italy and Germany, which reflects the partnerships the airline has with equity partners such as Alitalia and Air Berlin.
Plans for the future continue to progress with cargo facilities being upgraded at Abu Dhabi Airport. The upgrades being undertaken will be a key component of the growth story for Etihad Cargo over the next few years, giving the division a larger platform from which to expand.
In the dedicated cargo fleet, two new Boeing 777 freighters have already been added this year and commenced services on destinations such as Bogotá, Guangzhou, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Shanghai. The two new aircraft have additional seats for stable grooms, which has enabled the team to expand its ‘SkyStables’ product. Sky Stables has increased by over 50% in value on the last year. While further enhancements have included the addition of an A330 freighter service to Brussels, which commenced operations in the last week.
In the passenger fleet, new destinations are being added to Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen in Turkey and Rabat in Morocco and will provide additional bellyhold cargo capacity. The airline has also commenced its third daily A380 service to London Heathrow, and added additional A380s to Mumbai and Melbourne. New Boeing 787s are serving Düsseldorf and Perth with Shanghai, Istanbul and Johannesburg commencing operation over the Summer and providing further opportunities on bellyhold cargo.