The launch has been announced of Cargo B Airlines, a completely new all cargo airline which plans to operate from the Belgian capital. It will provide full cargo daytime flights serving major markets around the world such as the Middle and Far East, Africa and South America. Subject to the usual government formalities, the operational start-up with two leased B747 freighter aircraft is planned for October 2007. One of the aircraft will commence operations in October, with the second aircraft partly on standby during the three month start-up period. The introduction of a third freighter aircraft is scheduled for April 2008. The strategy will be to phase out these aircraft as from 2010 and replace them with newer, more fuel efficient and environmentally friendly equipment. The two first aircraft have already been purchased by 3P Air Freighters, Ltd., a company set up specifically for investment in aircraft and controlled by the well known Belgian investment bank, Petercam SA.
Cargo B Airlines aims to operate under a Belgian Aircraft Operating Certificate and will employ mostly Belgian nationals.
The three founders of the new airline are: the Chief Executive Officer Robert Kuijpers, who has had many years industry experience, previously Executive Chairman of SN Brussels Airlines and prior to that CEO of DHL Worldwide Express. Captain Arno Broes who has held several senior management positions in the airline industry takes the position of Executive VP Operations. Niek Van Der Weide, with a successful track record in airline cargo sales, will be the Executive VP Sales and Marketing. A recruitment campaign is in progress to fill other key positions, ready for the October start up.
Brussels being not only the heart of the EU economy, is also ideally situated as an operational cargo hub for both export and import, with efficient road and rail connections as well as global passenger and cargo flights network. Working closely with the airport authorities, handlers, international and local forwarders and other carriers, Cargo B Airlines will provide the much needed main deck capacity to satisfy the current market demand and at the same time, reinforce the role of Brussels Airport as one of the world’s leading trade and cargo centres.