DHL Express is adding four B767-300 Boeing Converted Freighters (BCF) as part of the global logistics company’s efforts to continue modernising and growing its fleet. The four aircraft will enter service in 2021.
Driven by surging e-commerce demand and the Covid-19 impact on global passenger services, the express unit of Deutsche Post DHL Group says the move is also aimed at modernising its long-haul intercontinental fleet with more eco-friendly and cost-efficient aircraft. The aircraft are converted from passenger to freighter configuration by Boeing to fit the needs of DHL Express and meet the rising global demand for express services.
“With a burgeoning e-commerce sector and the continued lack of belly space in passenger aircraft, there could not be a more opportune time to add these freighters to the DHL Express air network,” says Sean Wall, executive vice president, Network Operations & Aviation, DHL Express Asia Pacific.
“The B767-300F is a proven model that we have operated across our global fleet for many years and it will continue to help us deliver excellence with greater efficiency and at a lower carbon footprint.”
Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, the rapid growth of e-commerce was expected to exert pressure on supply chains and the airfreight transportation space. A study by Facebook and Bain & Company found that the average spend per digital consumer in Southeast Asia is expected to triple from 2018 to 2025. With many countries still under pandemic protection measures, the demand for fast and reliable cross-border shipping has grown exponentially.
“Boeing is committed to delivering the freighter capacity that DHL needs to succeed as one of the most trusted logistics and express cargo leaders in the world,” says Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales and Marketing, The Boeing Company. “We are delighted that they choose Boeing platforms to optimise their operations. Boeing has received 51 orders and commitments for the 767-300BCF to date.”
According to Boeing, the 767 Freighter Family is the world’s most efficient medium wide-body twin-engine freighter, boasting the lowest direct operating costs, and best payload to weight ratio. This Boeing says, “allows airlines to develop new opportunities in the long-haul, regional, and feeder markets.”
The B767-300BCF has virtually the same cargo capability as the B767-300F production freighter with approximately 50 tonnes structural payload at a range of approximately 3,000 nautical miles (5,556 km) and 186,880 kg maximum takeoff weight.
As part of its Strategy 2025, DHL Express has continued to invest in and employ innovative solutions and technologies to meet the growing demands of cross-border e-commerce trade and intercontinental delivery expertise. The company notes it is focused on continuously improving its global network while reducing carbon emissions and fuel consumption to benefit the environment, partners and customers.
Since 2019, DHL Express has also added 14 fuel-efficient B777F to replace older B747-400s. DHL Express operates over 260 dedicated aircraft with 17 partner airlines on over 3,000 daily flights across 220 countries and territories.