Maersk Enters a New Frontier with Launch of Maersk Air Cargo

Photo Credit: A.P. Moller-Maersk

Maersk, the shipping giant, is launching a new cargo airline to try and better meet customers needs. The Danish company announced that it will be joining a growing number of private sector companies which are investing in their own aircraft amid supply chain challenges and long delivery times.

Maersk Air Cargo is leading a new frontier in logistics where ocean carriers are involved in air cargo, too.

Maersk made the announcement last week, seeking to expand into more well-rounded logistics operations as customers require more integrated logistics solutions amid the challenges they are experiencing. Maersk Air Cargo flights will be based out of Billund, the second-largest airport in Denmark. The company says flights will be scheduled every day with regular service.

According to Maersk’s press release announcing the launch, Star Air – which previously managed all Maersk flights – has consolidated under the Maersk name and is now part of the new service in an attempt to offer full logistics services by air, land, and sea under one roof.

Maersk is looking to alleviate ongoing supply chain issues and provide options with the launch.

The launch of Maersk Air Cargo comes at a time when the air cargo industry is facing significant challenges. Capacity constraints, long delivery times, and supply chain disruptions have all been major pain points for shippers. By further investing in its own aircraft and infrastructure, Maersk is looking to provide a more seamless and efficient experience for its customers.

Maersk has read its customer base well and determined that customers will not be satisfied without this type of service. We have seen the same trend developing for other huge companies like Amazon, Home Depot, Walmart, and others, who have decided to take on a bigger chunk of the entire supply chain themselves post-Covid.

Torben Bengtsson, Global Head of Air & LCL at Maersk, said this in the company’s press release:

“Maersk Air Cargo is an important step of the Maersk Air Freight strategy, as it will allow us to offer customers a truly unique combination of air freight integrated with other transport modes. 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.”

The move is almost certainly to remake a big component of logistics, as Maersk is one of the largest and leading shipping carriers globally.

Maersk aims to move as much as a third of its air cargo through its own Maersk Air Cargo infrastructure, which includes five dedicated aircraft. The aircraft include two Boeing 777F planes and three Boeing 767-300 planes. The fleet is partially owned and partially leased, allowing Maersk to further transition into the air business.

Maersk Air Cargo aims to be partially operational by the second half of 2022 and scale up between then and 2024, when it should be fully operational.