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Breakbulk April 2018

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"We hit the ground running ... It's been quite dynamic for us over the past 12 months." April 2018 | The Journal of Commerce 19 Breakbulk & Project Cargo world's fastest-growing cargo airlines. AirBridge has 18 747 freighters – including 11 747-8Fs — and reported a 13 percent volume increase last year to more than 700,000 metric tons, with outsize cargo jumping 33 percent. The heavy-lift and project cargo markets have been struggling for years, most recently because of the slump in key oil, gas, and mining sectors, and earlier because of the reduction of Western involvement in military confl icts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Defense shipments had accounted for the majority of AN- 124 fl ights, forcing their operators to focus more on the conventional cargo market. Antonov spent its fi rst post-di- vorce year expanding its global footprint, fi rst adding a new UK headquarters at London Stansted, followed this year by a base in Hous- ton where it can maximize on the US-Ukraine "open skies" agreement revenue. Conventional cargo carriers such as Luxembourg-based Cargolux and Korean Air Lines have stepped up their pursuit of heavy-lift cargo. Antonov and Volga-Dnepr went their separate ways after the break- up of Ruslan International, their 10-year joint venture for marketing their AN-124s. The divorce came amid deterioration in relations between Russia and Ukraine. Now Volga-Dnepr is a major rival to Antonov. In addition to its larger fl eet of AN-124s, Volga-Dnepr owns AirBridgeCargo Airlines, one of the Maximus with one of the planes. But Antonov commands a special place in the market as the operator of the sole AN-225, the world's larg- est commercial cargo aircraft, with a payload up to 250 metric tons. "There's no competition for our AN- 225," Bingley said. The plane is ideal for "stu you can't get on an AN- 124" and "mega-urgent" contracts triggered by shippers' production glitches and missed deadlines. While demand in the heavy-lift and project cargo market is fi rming, charter rates are still lower than two to three years ago amid fi erce compe- tition. Antonov aircraft battle with competitors' Boeing 747 freighters, especially the 747-8Fs, which have a 130-metric ton payload and can carry cargo up to 45 meters long. Additional competition comes from the relatively cheap and readily available belly capacity of passenger airlines seeking additional cargo BREAKBULK CARGO EXPERTS JAXPORT. It's Just Smart Business. JAXPORT.COM/BREAKBULK JAXPORT Worldwide Shipping Solutions • Fast Reach to 60M+ Consumers Strategic Location • Skilled Labor • On-Dock Storage

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