Volga-Dnepr Group H1 revenue up 40pc
RUSSIA'S Volga-Dnepr Group reported that total revenue across its three airlines - Volga-Dnepr Airlines, AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) and ATRAN Airlines - increased by more than 40 per cent in the first half of the year
RUSSIA'S Volga-Dnepr Group reported that total revenue across its three airlines - Volga-Dnepr Airlines, AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) and ATRAN Airlines - increased by more than 40 per cent in the first half of the year.
The group, which is in its 30th year of operations said it has performed with 'stability and consistency' in the six-month period 'thanks to a quick response to market situations, the adaptation of strategy towards a new reality and interim changes of the carriers' business models with a focus on charters' programmes'.
The company noted that amid over 18 per cent and 19 per cent drop in the overall market tonnage and FTKs (freight tonne-km), respectively, the group managed to hold on to 5 per cent and 10 per cent decrease. 'FTKs showed a slight decline, given that most of the flights were operated as charters and transported low-density PPE. For the first six months of 2020, the groups' share in FTKs has increased by 5 per cent year on year'.
From January to June, the group transported more than 25,000 tonnes of medical cargo including PPE, medical beds and mattresses, artificial lung ventilation apparatus, as well as oversized and heavy sterilisation vehicles.
The group also launched an 'antivirus action plan', which included investing into disinfecting its fleet and cargo onboard and where necessary, allocating budget to PPE and Covid-19 test kits for its staff.
Chief commercial officer at Volga-Dnepr Group, Konstantin Vekshin, commented: 'E-commerce and pharma shipments have become the biggest growth drivers and have demonstrated almost three and two-and-a-half-fold increase respectively, tipping the point of 30,000 and 35,000 tonnes.
'The cargo was delivered both through charter and scheduled operations. Industry-wise, we have more than doubled our oil and gas operations and reached over 20 per cent surge in Aerospace operations onboard unique ramp freighters - An-124-100/150 and Il-76TD-90VD. Whereas a lot of projects have been frozen following the pandemic, major manufacturers managed to keep their operations.
He added: 'It is also noteworthy that the crisis pushed the development of online cargo bookings, not only through our own website channel but also through our partners' platforms, likes of WebCargo and cargo.one. In our tech-savvy world omnichannel approach is the key to successful customer relations and overall customer experience enhancement.'
The performance is a turnaround from last year when the company was going through a tough patch as a result of a trade war-related downturn. In October last year Air Cargo News reported that the company cut jobs, while it also had to adjust its network. It also implemented an optimisation plan, with reports suggesting it had to delay staff payments and restructured its management team after a tough first half that saw volumes decline 6 per cent year on year.
This year the group is one of a number of freighter operators that have seen the market turn in their favour. Although demand is down as a result of the covid-19 crisis, a shortage of capacity - due to the grounding of passenger operations - and urgent demand has driven up rates, protecting revenues and increasing profitability, London's Air Cargo News reported.