DIGITAL airfreight disruptor Cargo.One has entered into an agreement with Saudia Cargo which will enable the carrier’s freight forwarder customers to view and book capacity via an e-bookings platform.

It provides cloud-based, real-time price quotes and bookings confirmations in just a few seconds, writes Thelma Etim.

Under the agreement, capacity offered by the airline’s cargo division is to become available electronically in the second quarter of 2021, a statement reveals. It will allow some 2,000 forwarders to instantly access capacity on routes to and from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia and the United States.

Omar Hariri, Saudia Cargo’s chief executive, has a strong background in freight forwarding and since his appointment in 2018 has been especially busy overseeing the rapid expansion of the carrier’s fleet, the restructuring of its products portfolio and sizeable investments in innovation including facilitating the business’ digital transformation.

“Saudia Cargo’s objective is to always deliver a premium customer experience,” Hariri asserts. “We are convinced that Cargo.One is the ideal partner to perfect our digital service offer. We will be offering customers a proven and efficient online bookings platform where they will have access to real-time rates and immediate booking confirmations.”

The Middle East airline’s airfreight division, which operates a fleet of seven B747 and B777 freighters and markets the belly-hold capacity of more than 180 passenger aircraft, has an extensive network of more than 225 international and 26 domestic destinations.

Teddy Zebitz, chief cargo officer at Saudia Cargo, says the Cargo.One agreement is expected to further improve operational efficiencies. “The pandemic has reinforced the importance of flexibility and speed in air cargo, with simplicity and process optimisation being keys to success,” he observes.

“Through Cargo.One we will offer our customers a fast, simple, and first-class booking experience. It will also enable us to quickly share and promote our ever-evolving freighter and passenger freighter network – such as our recently launched five weekly Liège-Riyadh service.”

The digital disruptor’s latest business breakthrough – which significantly expands its footprint in the Gulf region – follows the signing up of Air Canada’s airfreight division and, after raising US$60million last year in investment capital, is in line with its broader plans to expand into the North American and Asia regions. The ‘remote-first’ cloud-based company has hired software and technology specialist Chad Tibor as its new vice-president and general manager for airlines in the Americas region.

Lufthansa Cargo, Finnair Cargo, AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC), Etihad Airways, and All Nippon Airways (ANA) are among its client airlines utilising the platform, which also serves major forwarders including Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, Agility Logistics, DACHSER and Flexport.

Moritz Claussen, founder and managing director of Cargo.One, is convinced the company will play a fundamental role in Saudia Cargo’s digital evolution. “We are honoured and proud of the fact that Saudia Cargo – a prime example of an airline that leverages and augments its existing systems to take a leap into the future of capacity distribution and pricing – has chosen us as their partner to build a core component of their digital transformation,” he says.

“We look forward to working in close collaboration with Saudia Cargo and its general sales agents around the world to jointly ensure that customers will always enjoy a first-class booking experience.”

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