The global airfreight market is pretty flat right now, and air cargo traffic through Europe remains little better than stable, according to Geodis.
The firm’s global product director for airfreight, Henk Venema (pictured), says that European outbound volumes have not seen growth this year, while yields have also been under pressure.
Venema points to declining confidence in China’s economy that has hit both exports out of and imports into that most important of air freight markets, while there remains significant over-capacity on the China sector.
The market “is what it is”, Venema remarks. He says forwarders like Geodis can’t change that, but they can adapt their own strategy to maximise the value of the opportunities on offer.
And Geodis is doing just that, he says. Most notably, just last month, the company confirmed its decision to acquire Ozburn-Hessey Logistics (OHL), one of the world’s biggest third-party logistics companies.
OHL will, in time, be rebranded under the Geodis banner, and integrating its people and its operations in North America within the compass of Europe’s fourth-largest supply chain specialist will take time and effort.
Another focus of late has been the full integration of the Central and Eastern European operations of Geodis Calberson into the wider Geodis business ambit.
Geodis Calberson has more than 30 years of activity in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as in the Middle East, Far East, the Caucasus and Central Asia.
That process has formed part of a wider rebranding that was launched in May and a reorganisation in business lines that has seen entity names such as BM, CalbGE and Wilson all integrated into the one Geodis entity.
Finally, Venema points to the heavy investments that Geodis has been making in Germany. It has chosen Frankfurt to act as a hub gateway, and has invested in new freight managers, new sales teams and infrastructure in Germany’s air cargo capital.