Tag Archives: SW Italia

How global warming could impact air cargo flights

We’re all too aware of the many disastrous implications of global climate change – from the impact on coastal communities of rising sea levels through to the dangers of increasingly unpredictable seasons on agricultural cycles. But what about our own industry? A recent report in Climatic Change suggests that the implications could be serious for air transportation, and are well worth considering as the effects of climate change become more evident.


Serious impact

The report points to the way in which steadily rising temperatures will have an effect on the density of the air in the atmosphere. This has a direct impact on the amount of lift that our planes can generate – with serious consequences in terms of the amount of cargo that the aircraft would be able to carry. In extreme situations it could lead to aircraft being grounded during the hottest periods – with the experts suggesting that up to a third of flights might be prevented from taking off.  If true, the impact of increasing air temperatures would be particularly serious for air cargo operators – especially those who use larger aircraft such as the 777-300. The answer for the air cargo industry could lie in weight restrictions below their maximum take off weight – but the costs could be substantial.


A worrying pattern of evidence

“As air temperatures rise at constant pressure, air density declines, resulting in less lift generation by an aircraft wing at a given airspeed and potentially imposing a weight restriction on departing aircraft,” says the report by Coffel, Thompson and Horton. “Our results suggest that weight restriction may impose a non-trivial cost on airlines and impact aviation operations around the world.”


Ignazio Coraci comments: “This is troubling news for the industry, because it builds on previous research from 2015 – a compelling pattern is emerging that suggests that climate change could have very serious implications for our industry – not just in terms of cost but also in the quality of the service that we can offer our customers. As an industry we must do everything we can to make sure that the impact of climate change on our industry and the customers we serve is kept to a minimum.”

Hong Kong sees a surge in growth for first half of 2017

It has been a truly impressive start to the year for Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA), with growth in traffic right across the board. In terms of air cargo business, HKIA has handled an impressive 2.3 million tonnes of cargo already this year in the first six months to June – that’s up a remarkable 11.3% on the same period last year.

Booming exports

So what has been behind HKIA’s great start to the year – and more importantly, do the experts think it will be sustained? Well, in the latest figures from June, 410,000 tonnes of cargo passed through the airport, up 11.4% on 2016 – and there are indications that a 17% year-on-year increase in June exports from the airport led to the high growth in cargo tonnage for that period. That bump in export figures has certainly contributed then to the airport’s positive performance in the first half of 2017, but HKIA has also benefited from an improved global outlook. And with the Asian markets leading the way in air cargo growth, HKIA is in prime position to take advantage of a global economic performance that is looking positive in terms of consumer and business confidence.

Investing for the future

HKIA isn’t standing still, with work starting last August on a third runway to help accommodate future growth. The airport is also making further investments to ensure it meets the needs of customers.

“On the cargo front, HKIA continues to develop its ability to serve fast-growing segments of the high-value cargo business, such as fresh produce and temperature-sensitive pharmaceuticals that require specialised handling,” says an airport spokesperson. “The airport authority and local industry stakeholders are working closely together to pursue the IATA Centre of Excellence for Independent Validators in Pharmaceutical Logistics (CEIV Pharma) accreditation on airport community basis and HKIA is expected to be recognised as an IATA CEIV Pharma Partner Airport by the third quarter in 2017.”

A sustainable future

Ignazio Coraci comments: “Clearly Hong Kong is an important site for both our ASC Cargo and SW Italia businesses, and so the news that air freight handling is continuing to grow there is great to hear. I’m also really encouraged by the investment in infrastructure that is being made at HKIA – it will go a long way towards making sure that the performance we’ve seen so far this year is sustained.”

SW Italia Starts Expanding its Fleet

SW Italia’s CEO, Ignazio Coraci, recently announced that the leading Italian all air-cargo carrier will pursue ambitious expansion plans in 2017, by extending its air shipment services globally.

Leading carrier

SW Italia has expanded. Cargo News from cargonews.it
SW Italia’s fleet has expanded.

Based at Milan’s Malpensa Airport, SW Italia was founded in January 2015. Right from its inception, SW Italia has aimed to become Italy’s leading completely air cargo service and to make headway in the lucrative European market. SW Italia is now increasingly connecting with the main cargo markets for Italy, from Korea, China and Hong Kong in the East, to the booming United States in the West.

SW Italia established its fleet with a Boeing 747-400F. This is the best-selling model in the Boeing 747 family of jet airliners. This full freight unit has been out on rent to Qatar Airways, one of the most prosperous carriers in the Middle East, for the past year. Qatar Airways has relied on this Boeing 747-400F to conduct key services from Doha, the Qatari capital, to China and on to Northern Europe.

Expansion plans

SW Italia has now added a second Boeing 747-400F to its fleet. It will be employed by the key Chinese courier STO Express on its Hong Kong to Prague service, which it established in late 2016. The plane, which now bears STO Express’ insignia, will travel this Hong Kong to Prague route three times a week, but is also expected to make stopovers in Brescia Montichiari and Baku on the return flight.

The company has also announced that it will add a third Boeing 747-400F to its fleet in November 2017. It is expected that this unit may serve the US market, where SW Italia recently secured flight authorisations to carry cargo between top European and American transport hubs. Reports have revealed, for example, that SW Italia is planning to cultivate a Milan to Chicago service.

Commenting on SW Italia’s expansion plans, Ignazio Coraci was quoted by Avio News, an online air news agency, saying: “In 2017 we expect to further increase our fleet with another and open new routes.” Ignazio also stated that now SW Italia has received the necessary US authorisations, it will start pursuing its American expansion plans and it also hopes to move into the African market, which is a small but growing export destination for Italian companies, at some point in the future.

Ambitious goals

SW Italia may have only been established two years ago, but the firm has already positioned itself successfully in the global air cargo market. It has also consolidated critical partnerships in the worldwide arena, to take advantage of new business opportunities. With its 2017 expansion plans, SW Italia will clearly continue to grow its air cargo delivery business across the world in future.

About Ignazio Coraci

Ignazio Coraci is a senior player in the global aviation industry, specialising in air-cargo delivery services. Ignazio is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Heathrow Airport-based ground-handling service ASC Cargo and holds the same position at SW Italia, one of Italy’s leading all-cargo airlines.

SW Italia To Pursue Milan-Chicago Service

SW Italia, an air all-cargo services firm headed by Ignazio Coraci, has announced that it has initiated plans to set up a Milan to Chicago line, as part of its ambitions to establish operations across the US.

Serving markets

Image of an air hangar. Ignazio Coraci discusses SW Italia's new operations.
A new operation is being pursued.

SW Italia is fast-becoming one of the most important all-cargo services in Europe. This carrier service is majority-owned by Ignazio Coraci, via his firm Cargo Invest. Ignazio recently revealed that in 2015 – its first year of operation, SW Italia earned US$1.1m in net profit, on revenue equalling US$25.2m.

The firm has maximised profitability, by developing its network to include key cargo travel destinations for the Italian market. SW Italia operates scheduled services, for example, between Milan Malpensa and Baku, Incheon, Hanoi and Vienna, via a leased 757-400 freighter. It has now applied for an expedited U.S. Foreign Air Carrier Permit to run scheduled and charter flights to key US destinations.

US flights

Freight Week, an industry portal, lists more details on the application, which has been made under the US’ Open Skies Agreement with the EU. It would start with flights between Milan and Chicago. SW Italia has also applied for permission to eventually run scheduled and on-demand charter flights between any points in Italy, through any intermediate points, to any points in the US and beyond.

SW Italia is further seeking permission to run foreign scheduled and chartered air cargo services from any EU member state, via any EU member state or intermediate points, to anywhere in the US and beyond. SW Italia also wants to supply similar services between any points in the US and any other destination. It is additionally hoping to secure authorisation for any scheduled/chartered transports according to any extra rights that may become available to European Community carriers later.

The firm broke down the profits and costs of running air cargo flights between Italy and the US in its filing. SW Italia estimates that with an 80% load factor, its average revenue for running a charter flight between Milan and various destinations on the US East Coast would be US$163,200 at US$1.60 per kilo. The cost of this service would come in at US$275,125.00, but “with the estimated 96 flights in the first year of operations, the financial result per year is estimated to constitute $1,005,600.”

Major investment

It is key to devote significant capital to business expansion operations, in order to ensure that the infrastructure is in place to allow said operations to succeed. The US is the largest economy in the world, with a lucrative air cargo transportation sector. If SW Italia’s application succeeds, it will invest heavily into making its scheduled and chartered services between Italy and the US fruitful. With this strategy, it could harness the power of the US’ booming economy, to build a lucrative revenue stream.


SW Italia Builds On Partnership With HACTL

In late 2016, SW Italia extended its partnership with Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd (HACTL), one of the world’s leading air cargo terminal services, with a new deal. This development was welcomed by SW Italia’s President, Iganzio Coraci, who labelled it “an exciting new project” for both firms.

Strong partnership

Ignazio Coraci discusses SW Italia
SW Italia is growing strongly

SW Italia is fast-becoming one of Italy’s leading all-cargo airlines, with the goal of eventually becoming one of the most important in Europe. SW Italia is increasingly developing its network, to connect with the main cargo destinations for the Italian market. The locations currently featured in SW Italia’s network include the US, as well as various Asian markets like China, Vietnam on Hong Kong.

Building its Hong Kong operations, SW Italia has formed an extensive partnership with HACTL. Operating out of Hong Kong International Airport, HACTL supports the import, export and trans-shipment of air cargo for this Chinese city-state, utilising innovative technology to supply world-class service. SW Italia has now tasked HACTL with handling its new weekly Boeing 747-8F service.

Exciting project

An article on Global Trade Mag reports that this service will operate between Hong Kong and Prague. It will be for the exclusive use of Sto Express, one of China’s largest express operators, in what is believed to be the first regular European freight operation undertaken on behalf of any Chinese express carrier. The Boeing 747-8F will carry the livery i.e. company branding of Sto Express in flight.

Speaking out on SW Italia’s Hong Kong to Prague service, Ignazio Coraci said: “We look forward to working with Sto Express on this exciting new project, and are very happy to entrust the vitally important ground handling element of the operation to our long-term service partner HACTL.” This strengthened partnership was also welcomed by Mark Whitehead, HACTL’s Chief Executive.

Commenting further, Whitehead noted that “we are delighted to extend our relationship with SW Italia to include this new operation, which clearly signals the growing role of the mainstream airfreight industry in e-commerce logistics.” HACTL will supply a comprehensive service, encompassing ramp handling, cargo terminal operations, cargo documentation and crew transportation.

New opportunities

Hong Kong boasts a vibrant economy, with a fast-expanding e-commerce sector. Hong Kong International Airport is the world’s busiest airport by cargo traffic, providing plenty of opportunities for firms like SW Italia. SW Italia relies on HACTL’s familiarity Hong Kong International Airport to tap these opportunities, so the firm was the obvious choice, for this new Hong Kong to Prague service.

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