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Maersk air cargo business set for take off

Danish shipping giant launches Maersk Air Cargo to support growing need for integrated logistics.

Danish shipping giant Maersk has launched a new air cargo business to service its customers' needs for integrated logistics.

Aymeric Chandavoine, Maersk’s Global Head of Logistics and Services, said Maersk Air Cargo is designed to make supply chain journeys more resilient and intuitive.

“As a standalone service, Maersk Air Cargo can help customers make the most of opportunities by getting their air cargo to the right place at the right time. When combined with our ocean, inland, warehousing and customs services it will power your supply chain in more ways than one.”

Maersk Air Cargo will operate out of Denmark’s second largest airport, Billund. Maersk’s existing cargo airline Star Air – the internal air cargo operation of Maersk established in 1987 - will be incorporated into the new business.

Torben Bengtsson, Global Head of Air & LCL (Less than Container Load) at Maersk said:“Maersk last operated from Billund in 2005. From the continent Maersk Air Cargo will progressively deploy and operate a controlled capacity of five aircraft – two new B777F and three leased B767-300 cargo aircraft. Three new B767-300 freighters will also be added to the US-China operation, which will be initially handled by a third-party operator. The new aircraft are expected to be operational from second half 2022 and onwards up to 2024.

Jan Hessellund, CEO of Billund Airport, said: “We have had growth, defied the corona and set a new record year in cargo in 2021. It does not happen without good partners, and we do what we can to make our partners good. Now Maersk Air Cargo enters the stage at Billund Airport and raises it a notch. We are incredibly proud that we are being chosen as Maersk's European hub for air freight, and we look forward to developing the collaboration to even new heights.”

In November 2021 Maersk announced that it was buying German freight forwarding business Senator International in a deal worth $644 million.

The German company brings a technology advantage with its Cargo Wise One core operating platform, a  single use system which will accelerate the integration with Maersk’s Air and LCL (Less than Container Load) products.

Maersk aims to have approximately one third of its annual air tonnage carried within its own controlled freight network. This will be achieved through a combination of owned and leased aircraft, replicating the structure that the company has within its ocean fleet. The remaining capacity will be provided by strategic commercial carriers and charter flight operators.


  • Air
  • Supply Chain
  • Maritime