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Light my fire!

In August, the eyes of the world will be on Rio de Janeiro, host of...

 

“Top offers”

 

Silvia Garcia Helmer is anticipating a two-month peak in cargo for the duration of the Games.

A sports fan at the Christ the Redeemer statue atop the Corcovado: Lufthansa Cargo Sales Manager Silvia Helmer is keeping her fingers crossed for the gymnast Arthur Zanetti, the swimmer César Cileo and the pole vaulter Fabiana Murer (all from Brazil).

The Rio market

Every night, two Boeing 747-8 aircraft fly be­tween Frankfurt (FRA) and Rio de Janeiro (GIG), and vice versa. The bellies of these passenger airliners have enough space for 70 cubic meters of freight with a weight of 25 metric tons. Anything that cannot or is not permitted to be loaded in this passenger jet is rerouted via Viracopos (VCP), Lufthansa Cargo’s freight station in the greater São Paulo area, which has a road feeder service linking it with Rio. Apart from Frankfurt, the prime destinations for freight from the catchment area of Rio are Zurich, Stavanger, Paris and London. Consign­ments delivered to these regions consist mainly of fruit, oilfield equipment, fish and textile products. Economic experts say that regret­tably these shipments contain far too little in the way of processed products and industrial goods. Imported goods that are airfreighted to Rio with Lufthansa Cargo primarily include pharmaceuticals, equipment for the oil and gas industry and spare parts for the automotive and shipbuilding sector.
 
In Rio, Lufthansa Cargo uses the warehouse belonging to the airport’s new operating company RIOgaleão, which was founded by the Odebrecht construction group (No. 7 worldwide), Changi Airport from Sin­ga­pore and the government-owned Infraero company. 250 RIOgaleão employees supervise the handling of around 70,000 metric tons of airfreight that pass through the airport every year, 33,000 tons of which are imports and exports respectively. Lufthansa Cargo accounts for around 6,000 tons, and in 2014 exported 3,307 metric tons.
 

The Rio market

Every night, two Boeing 747-8 aircraft fly be­tween Frankfurt (FRA) and Rio de Janeiro (GIG), and vice versa. The bellies of these passenger airliners have enough space for 70 cubic meters of freight with a weight of 25 metric tons. Anything that cannot or is not permitted to be loaded in this passenger jet is rerouted via Viracopos (VCP), Lufthansa Cargo’s freight station in the greater São Paulo area, which has a road feeder service linking it with Rio. Apart from Frankfurt, the prime destinations for freight from the catchment area of Rio are Zurich, Stavanger, Paris and London. Consign­ments delivered to these regions consist mainly of fruit, oilfield equipment, fish and textile products. Economic experts say that regret­tably these shipments contain far too little in the way of processed products and industrial goods. Imported goods that are airfreighted to Rio with Lufthansa Cargo primarily include pharmaceuticals, equipment for the oil and gas industry and spare parts for the automotive and shipbuilding sector.

In Rio, Lufthansa Cargo uses the warehouse belonging to the airport’s new operating company RIOgaleão, which was founded by the Odebrecht construction group (No. 7 worldwide), Changi Airport from Sin­ga­pore and the government-owned Infraero company. 250 RIOgaleão employees supervise the handling of around 70,000 metric tons of airfreight that pass through the airport every year, 33,000 tons of which are imports and exports respectively. Lufthansa Cargo accounts for around 6,000 tons, and in 2014 exported 3,307 metric tons.

www.riogaleao.com

What does a Lufthansa Cargo field sales representative in Rio do?
I support around 120 customers who regularly use our ­services. Major accounts include Cargolink, Cargomar, Kuehne + Nagel, Gefco and DB Schenker, but there is also a whole host of smaller forwarders. The focus of my work is in Rio de Janeiro, and in addition to that I handle the business of our customers in Curitiba, Belo Horizonte and those located in the northeastern regions of Brazil, whom I visit on a regular basis. I am also a member of a cross-locational oil and gas network team.

What major challenge do you face at your location?
The customs process remains sluggish, and there’s a lack of momentum due to the current crisis facing the Brazilian economy. What Brazil needs is better and more honest leaders – not only in government but throughout the country as a whole. Yet despite all the deficits, we here at Lufthansa Cargo are managing quite well.

Why do your customers choose Lufthansa Cargo?
Our 747-8 service runs like clockwork, arriving punctually every morning and departing every evening. This provides customers with a top offer and enables us to maintain excellent service at competitive rates.

How will the Olympics benefit the city and the logistics sector?
The Games are giving Rio’s infrastructure a fresh boost, for example, with the new underground line from Ipanema via Leblon to Barra da Tijuca. The harbor with its new museum has also become more attractive. As far as the logistics sector goes, the Games have significantly increased our workload but they will provide benefits for airfreight. I’m anticipating quite a significant peak in volume. Equipment for the athletes, the media and the sporting federations –  a lot of that will need to be flown in and out of Rio in the two months surrounding the Games and the Paralympics. And most of it at short notice.

 

What does a Lufthansa Cargo field sales representative in Rio do?
I support around 120 customers who regularly use our ­services. Major accounts include Cargolink, Cargomar, Kuehne + Nagel, Gefco and DB Schenker, but there is also a whole host of smaller forwarders. The focus of my work is in Rio de Janeiro, and in addition to that I handle the business of our customers in Curitiba, Belo Horizonte and those located in the northeastern regions of Brazil, whom I visit on a regular basis. I am also a member of a cross-locational oil and gas network team.

What major challenge do you face at your location?
The customs process remains sluggish, and there’s a lack of momentum due to the current crisis facing the Brazilian economy. What Brazil needs is better and more honest leaders – not only in government but throughout the country as a whole. Yet despite all the deficits, we here at Lufthansa Cargo are managing quite well.

Why do your customers choose Lufthansa Cargo?
Our 747-8 service runs like clockwork, arriving punctually every morning and departing every evening. This provides customers with a top offer and enables us to maintain excellent service at competitive rates.

How will the Olympics benefit the city and the logistics sector?
The Games are giving Rio’s infrastructure a fresh boost, for example, with the new underground line from Ipanema via Leblon to Barra da Tijuca. The harbor with its new museum has also become more attractive. As far as the logistics sector goes, the Games have significantly increased our workload but they will provide benefits for airfreight. I’m anticipating quite a significant peak in volume. Equipment for the athletes, the media and the sporting federations –  a lot of that will need to be flown in and out of Rio in the two months surrounding the Games and the Paralympics. And most of it at short notice.

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“Taking care of our customers”

According to Flavia Brandão, DB Schenker has the right recipe for tackling the challenges in Brazil – irrespective of the Olympics.

As Branch Manager of DB Schenker in Rio, Flavia Brandão heads a staff of 55 employees. She hopes that the rhythmic sports gymnast Daiane dos Santos wins gold for Brazil.

What does DB Schenker do in Rio?

Just as in all major economic centers of the world, DB Schenker has a broad portfolio of services in Rio: contract logistics, land transport, air and ocean freight – we offer everything. And as far as airfreight goes, we meet both standard and special requirements. A lot of our airfreight is trucked to Viracopos, from where it is dispatched to our target markets with freighters. But we also make use of the large availability of belly capacity in Rio, including the 25 metric tons that Lufthansa Cargo offers daily on the route to and from Germany. Due to the excellent service that is always an attractive option.

How are you dealing with the economic crisis in Brazil?

We are increasing our efforts. DB Schenker has a new management team that is tightening the reins to ensure that the recent failure to reach profit targets is rectified as soon as possible. There was a time when the logistics business was simple: business came almost automatically to a professionally organized generalist like DB Schenker, who was active all over the world. But today, we have to fight for every customer and for every order to ensure that we really win the contract. Most importantly, this fight can only be won if we take care of the customer. Only when nothing is left to be desired will customers return and enter into a partnership. That is real business success and it persists, even when times are hard.

Are the Olympic Games good for Rio?

Definitely, yes! Investments have been made in infrastructure and many regions have been given a makeover, like here at the harbor with the new Maritime Museum. There is more money coming into the city and we as logistics specialists will have more work to do. The DB SCHENKERsportsevents team has a global reach, and once again our German colleagues have been commissioned to handle the logistics for some Olympic teams, hospitality houses, broadcasters, sponsors and suppliers. But the city’s problems won’t be solved in the runup to the Games. There are simply too many deficits. In my opinion, it is crucially important for Rio and Brazil as a whole to invest systematically in the education system. It would automatically resolve a lot of problems because people could then take on more responsibility.

 

What does DB Schenker do in Rio?

Just as in all major economic centers of the world, DB Schenker has a broad portfolio of services in Rio: contract logistics, land transport, air and ocean freight – we offer everything. And as far as airfreight goes, we meet both standard and special requirements. A lot of our airfreight is trucked to Viracopos, from where it is dispatched to our target markets with freighters. But we also make use of the large availability of belly capacity in Rio, including the 25 metric tons that Lufthansa Cargo offers daily on the route to and from Germany. Due to the excellent service that is always an attractive option.


How are you dealing with the economic crisis in Brazil?

We are increasing our efforts. DB Schenker has a new management team that is tightening the reins to ensure that the recent failure to reach profit targets is rectified as soon as possible. There was a time when the logistics business was simple: business came almost automatically to a professionally organized generalist like DB Schenker, who was active all over the world. But today, we have to fight for every customer and for every order to ensure that we really win the contract. Most importantly, this fight can only be won if we take care of the customer. Only when nothing is left to be desired will customers return and enter into a partnership. That is real business success and it persists, even when times are hard.

Are the Olympic Games good for Rio?

Definitely, yes! Investments have been made in infrastructure and many regions have been given a makeover, like here at the harbor with the new Maritime Museum. There is more money coming into the city and we as logistics specialists will have more work to do. The DB SCHENKERsportsevents team has a global reach, and once again our German colleagues have been commissioned to handle the logistics for some Olympic teams, hospitality houses, broadcasters, sponsors and suppliers. But the city’s problems won’t be solved in the runup to the Games. There are simply too many deficits. In my opinion, it is crucially important for Rio and Brazil as a whole to invest systematically in the education system. It would automatically resolve a lot of problems because people could then take on more responsibility.

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“Terrific opportunity”

Patrick Fehring sees the Olympics as a chance to prove the airport’s cargo handling efficiency.

747-8 fan: Patrick Fehring, Director Cargo at RIOgaleão, the airport’s private operating company, loves cycling in Rio and is looking forward to attending the beach volleyball events with his children.

Rio’s international airport was privatized two years ago and has since been operated by RIOgaleão. What has changed?

A lot! By the time the Olympic Games get underway, we will have invested two billion Reais (an estimated 500 to 600 million euros, editor’s note) to bring large parts of the hitherto neglected airport up to international standards.

Did you also invest in the cargo business?

By all means! By the end of the year we will have spent 30 million Reais on equipment and infrastructure – and all with the goal of improving security and efficiency. This includes a new fleet of forklifts, 150 new cameras and the renovation of the export terminal. Our fully automated pharmaceutical warehouse with two climate zones and 17,000 cubic meters of storage space is already operational and it is in a class of its own. We regard this segment as having great potential, after all, it already generates 40 percent of our cargo revenue.

How important is cargo for RIOgaleão?

With a share of 25 percent, cargo is an important source of income for the airport. Our strategy involves forming sustainable partnerships with all participants in the supply chain – with airlines, customs agents, forwarders, importers and exporters and finally also with the authorities. The feedback we get from Lufthansa Cargo is extremely valuable as the high standards they set help us to define the right priorities. And besides, Lufthansa is the only airline that serves Rio with the Boeing 747-8 – a truly wonderful aircraft, also with respect to freight!

What should foreigners bear in mind when they do business in Rio?
The cariocas, as the inhabitants of Rio call themselves, are very aware of the shortcomings and are very outspoken when criticizing politicians and business leaders. But as a foreigner you should show more restraint.

How do you see the Olympics?

The Games have given us a great chance to drastically improve our situation and show the many players in the airfreight business that our airport, which had always been overshadowed by other hubs, is a modern, well-functioning gateway!

 

Rio’s international airport was privatized two years ago and has since been operated by RIOgaleão. What has changed?

A lot! By the time the Olympic Games get underway, we will have invested two billion Reais (an estimated 500 to 600 million euros, editor’s note) to bring large parts of the hitherto neglected airport up to international standards.

Did you also invest in the cargo business?


By all means! By the end of the year we will have spent 30 million Reais on equipment and infrastructure – and all with the goal of improving security and efficiency. This includes a new fleet of forklifts, 150 new cameras and the renovation of the export terminal. Our fully automated pharmaceutical warehouse with two climate zones and 17,000 cubic meters of storage space is already operational and it is in a class of its own. We regard this segment as having great potential, after all, it already generates 40 percent of our cargo revenue.

How important is cargo for RIOgaleão?

With a share of 25 percent, cargo is an important source of income for the airport. Our strategy involves forming sustainable partnerships with all participants in the supply chain – with airlines, customs agents, forwarders, importers and exporters and finally also with the authorities. The feedback we get from Lufthansa Cargo is extremely valuable as the high standards they set help us to define the right priorities. And besides, Lufthansa is the only airline that serves Rio with the Boeing 747-8 – a truly wonderful aircraft, also with respect to freight!

What should foreigners bear in mind when they do business in Rio?
The cariocas, as the inhabitants of Rio call themselves, are very aware of the shortcomings and are very outspoken when criticizing politicians and business leaders. But as a foreigner you should show more restraint.

How do you see the Olympics?

The Games have given us a great chance to drastically improve our situation and show the many players in the airfreight business that our airport, which had always been overshadowed by other hubs, is a modern, well-functioning gateway!

 

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“Mixed feelings”

Vitor Manhães considers improvements necessary that transcend the Olympics. He regards Lufthansa Cargo as well positioned.

Team spirit: Vitor de Siqueira Manhães (2nd f. r.), seen here with employees from the Rio-based handling agent CrossRacer, is Sales & Handling Manager at Lufthansa Cargo and an avid judo and gymnastics fan.

 

What advantage does Lufthansa Cargo have in Rio?

We offer expertise, the utmost in quality as well as being reliable and punctual. Customers who want good service and a team with brains choose Lufthansa Cargo. We attach great importance to security: our screening process is particularly sophisticated and we make no compromises on this issue. Our 747-8 aircraft, which offer around 25 tons of capacity, give us an additional edge over the competition. We even managed to load 30,140 kilograms of freight – presumably setting the record in our fleet. Sometimes we jokingly refer to the 747-8 as a freighter that can also take on passengers!

What are the greatest challenges?

Roads, infrastructure, processes, security – for years these were not kept up to standard. With the new airport operator, these aspects are gradually being improved. The airport is situated on an island in the middle of Guanabara Bay and the approach roads are narrow and don’t exactly lead through the best neighborhoods, which has caused safety concerns. However, the customs officials face the toughest challenge as they have to deal with a system of outmoded regulations.

How do you assess the Olympics given that Brazil is in the midst of an economic crisis?

I’m sceptical as to whether the Games will have a positive impact on Rio’s economy. Investments in transport routes are not enough – education, health and security also need improving! The irresponsibility of the political caste is causing us to suffer. But it would be unfair to lament our fate since we elected the politicians and they are, after all, only a reflection of our society. We have to take on responsibility and tackle the problems ourselves. The fight against corruption gives rise to optimism, and the fact that powerful politicians and business people are being brought to trial is unparalleled in our country’s history. I always say: everything will be alright in the end. And if it’s not alright, then it’s not yet the end!

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“Invaluable contacts”

Maxi de Paiva believes that the Olympics will provide Brazilians with a boost to their international contacts.

Full of drive: Maximiliana José Eduardo de Paiva studies Public Relations at the prestigious Faculdade Cásper Líbero in São Paulo. As well as supporting the Lufthansa Cargo Team South America, Caribbean and Florida, she is particularly looking forward to the Olympic basketball tournament.

How do you feel about Rio hosting the Olympics and the Paralympics?

Personally, I’m really looking forward to it and to watching lots of sports broadcasts on television at home in São Paulo. From a professional point of view, the Games will be very interesting because a major event like that is unparalleled in terms of media interest and economics. I started studying public relations because I want to organize events. And it doesn’t get much bigger than the Olympics.

Apart from enjoying top-level sports, how will the people of Brazil benefit from the Games?

Bringing together so many people from different countries and cultures – that in itself is fantastic. The international contacts that people will be able to establish locally are invaluable. I grew up in a very liberal-minded and cosmopolitan family: my father, who is a conductor, comes from Brazil, my mother is a pianist from Bulgaria and I attended an English-speaking school. These factors combined have significantly improved my prospects in terms of education and career choices.

Are you considering a career in the logistics industry?

We’ll see if I can carve a career out for myself. The logistics sector certainly offers a host of interesting employment opportunities worldwide. Logistics experts have to develop solutions for a variety of industries, which teaches them a lot about economics. With airfreight, goods like urgently needed medical supplies are transported from one end of the world to the other within a matter of days. I find that really impressive!

What effect is the country’s economic crisis having on the younger generation in Brazil?

The crisis has only exacerbated the problems that have been facing us for generations. Many young people from the middle classes are frustrated because they cannot go to university. There is a chronic lack of available places and universities are too expensive in general. If you do manage to graduate from university, then it’s quite hard to get a foothold on the career ladder. Evidently, the crisis is pretty serious because the prices for oil and raw materials are not recovering and this means that our economy lacks the necessary tailwind. And now the crisis is coinciding with a global downturn, which isn’t making the situation any easier. I can only hope that politicians and business leaders have learned from their past mistakes and are tackling the root causes of the problems. If they do, the situation will improve.

 

Photos:

Dario Zalis

planet 01/2016

How do you feel about Rio hosting the Olympics and the Paralympics?

Personally, I’m really looking forward to it and to watching lots of sports broadcasts on television at home in São Paulo. From a professional point of view, the Games will be very interesting because a major event like that is unparalleled in terms of media interest and economics. I started studying public relations because I want to organize events. And it doesn’t get much bigger than the Olympics.

Apart from enjoying top-level sports, how will the people of Brazil benefit from the Games?

Bringing together so many people from different countries and cultures – that in itself is fantastic. The international contacts that people will be able to establish locally are invaluable. I grew up in a very liberal-minded and cosmopolitan family: my father, who is a conductor, comes from Brazil, my mother is a pianist from Bulgaria and I attended an English-speaking school. These factors combined have significantly improved my prospects in terms of education and career choices.

Are you considering a career in the logistics industry?

We’ll see if I can carve a career out for myself. The logistics sector certainly offers a host of interesting employment opportunities worldwide. Logistics experts have to develop solutions for a variety of industries, which teaches them a lot about economics. With airfreight, goods like urgently needed medical supplies are transported from one end of the world to the other within a matter of days. I find that really impressive!

What effect is the country’s economic crisis having on the younger generation in Brazil?

The crisis has only exacerbated the problems that have been facing us for generations. Many young people from the middle classes are frustrated because they cannot go to university. There is a chronic lack of available places and universities are too expensive in general. If you do manage to graduate from university, then it’s quite hard to get a foothold on the career ladder. Evidently, the crisis is pretty serious because the prices for oil and raw materials are not recovering and this means that our economy lacks the necessary tailwind. And now the crisis is coinciding with a global downturn, which isn’t making the situation any easier. I can only hope that politicians and business leaders have learned from their past mistakes and are tackling the root causes of the problems. If they do, the situation will improve.

 

Photos:

Dario Zalis

planet 01/2016