Jettainer celebrates 20 years of ULD management

Jettainer is celebrating its 20th anniversary, growing from a small operator near Frankfurt Airport to a major global company.

Established on 27 April 2004, Jettainer started out as a joint venture between Lufthansa Cargo and US mobile asset management firm TrenStar, it became a fully-owned subsidiary of Lufthansa Cargo in 2009 and has grown consistently since its foundation.

It started with 27,000 units at a site near Frankfurt Airport and now has operations at 15 major hubs in Asia, the Middle East, Europe and the Americas.

The team of aviation experts manage ULDs for a range of passenger and cargo airlines.

In 2014, Jettainer expanded into the American market with the establishment of Jettainer Americas, serving customers in North, Central and South America with integrated teams in locations including Dallas, Chicago, Miami, New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles.

The Temperature Control Competence Center in Abu Dhabi opened in 2017, staffed by a specialised team to manage temperature-controlled containers.

Jettainer has consistently used innovative technologies to enhance ULD management including JettWare, its in-house IT solution, which has received continuous upgrades to integrate the latest technological advancements.

JettWare, along with the mobile version, JettApp, the industry’s first ULD management app, has streamlined ULD management for both Jettainer and its customers.

In collaboration with university partners, Jettainer has developed a decision-support system for ULD management that utilises big data and machine learning.

JettWare and the new generation JettWare NG incorporate AI capabilities with plans for continuous advancement to further boost workflow support.

To increase transparency and gain valuable insights into ULD usage, Jettainer has created digital twins for each ULD in its fleet.

Jettainer has also advanced sustainability with lighter ULDs, launching its first lightweight units in 2009.

Lightweight pallet nets were also introduced, offering 60% weight savings compared to polyester versions.

The squAIR-timber lightweight construction elements, which replace wooden beams used to build pallets can save weight by up to 80% with tests looking at all the measures confirming that they reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

In 2019, Jettainer launched the free-to-use ULD sharing platform, skypooling, which helps airlines to balance ULD stocks to avoid transporting empty containers and pallets, which also supports the reduction of CO2 emissions.

Thomas Sonntag, CEO of Jettainer, said: “Over the past two decades, Jettainer has transformed from a modest operator into a leader in the industry, we extend our gratitude to our customers, partners, and employees for their unwavering support and dedication. This milestone underscores the exceptional quality of our services and the innovative strength of our team.”

ULD management involves compiling and interpreting data, with Sonntag saying, “Smart use of information has always been a key pillar of our steering solution. However, we have not pursued every emerging trend. Instead, we selectively focus on digitalisation that has a tangible impact, ensuring that they deliver real value to our customers. For example, there are significant developments in the field of tracking sensors that indicate that Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) might only be a bridging technology.”

Explaining how data could be used in the future, Sonntag said: “APIs are one solution to smartly work with data to enhance service value and operational efficiency. We already have several interfaces in operation with our customers and partners. Adopting the IATA ONE Record standard for all areas of ULD management is a pivotal next step that Jettainer is preparing to undertake. We remain committed to further shaping the future of air transport logistics with our forward-thinking solutions.”

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