Impact Publications : AirCargo-250b
Page 8 • AIRCARGO ASIA-PACIFIC • AUGUST-SEPTEMBER 2017 We can deliver the valve... and the gas processing plant Our unique cargo fleet gets everyone talking, not to mention our 26 years’ experience of keeping our customers’ businesses moving. Big or small, simple or complex, we make sure your cargo is always delivered as promised. From a little valve to the gas processing plant, we’re the only people you need to call. Our engineering and logistics experts promise you total peace of mind by managing your most complex transportation challenges door-to-door, anywhere in the world. So, whether you need to move the valve or processing plant, we’re with you all the way. www.volga-dnepr.com email@example.com into our customers’ lives because we’ve wanted to do that too. It has also been gratifying to know that cargo has made, and continues to make, a very big and important contribution to the suc- cess of Virgin Atlantic and that we are a vital part of the business. It has also been a great pleasure to work with Merren McArthur, chief executive of Virgin Aus- tralia Cargo, and her team. I am so pleased that we continue to be part of their growth through the international long-haul cargo sales and management agreement we’ve had with Virgin Australia since 2009. It has ensured we’ve been able to retain our own pres- ence in Australia, where we have a fantastic team led by Pip Palmer. Trips to Australia have been a par- ticular highlight of my time with the airline. I love the country! Also, the awards we’ve won have been special to us because they represent great recognition for our entire cargo team and our partners around the world. There’s nothing better than when your customers say you’re doing a good job. Would you have done anything different given the benefit of hind- sight? To be honest, I don’t think so in terms of the decisions we’ve had control of. Who helped you most in your ca- reer? I will always be grateful to Jane Spanton who, as operations manager for Virgin Atlantic, gave me my first job with the airline and, most importantly, instilled the passion for service that still runs through the business today. Jane was extremely professional but also a tough operator. She simply didn’t accept mediocrity when it came to customer service. Many a time in the office, if a phone rang more than three times, Jane would hurl something across the room at the nearest person to spark them into action! I also have to say Alan Cham- bers, who was MD of cargo when I joined Virgin. We had a lot of good times but also some very difficult challenges, not least after 9/11 when like a lot of companies in the industry we had to reduce the size of our team by 20 per cent to cut costs. The hardest part of the job is seeing good people leave. What does the Brexit vote mean for Virgin Atlantic? It has been a tough operating period post referendum. The fall in the pound increases our biggest operating costs such as fuel and aircraft leasing, which are borne in dollars. It also affects the price of travel for UK customers. We are confident in the steps we have taken to minimise the risks to our business of a weaker pound following an event like this. We need to look to the longer term, and remember Britain’s economic strength, our business relation- Continued from previous page. Brexit is raising costs, but UK is a strong and resilient nation interview ships across the globe and our proud trading heritage. We’re ready to succeed in the months and years ahead. Would you recommend airfreight as a good career move? Absolutely! If I look at the peo- ple in our own cargo business, we have some of the best and most talented people in the air cargo industry. The best feeling is giving them opportunities to progress their careers within the airline. For the industry as a whole, however, I feel we suffer from having no formal career-based qualifications that are recognised. That needs to change. We are part of global supply chains that benefit compa- nies, consumers, communities and economies across the globe. We should all be proud of what the air cargo industry does and be active- ly promoting it as a great career choice to young people. How do you see the new Air France-KLM, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic transatlantic part- nership affecting cargo growth? We’re really excited by this news as it will provide greater oppor- tunities for our customers and ensure Virgin Atlantic is strongly positioned for long term success.