New AMS-based airfreight wholesaler takes off

Schiphol Cargo
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A new airfreight wholesaler – Wholesale by Vels – has been launched by long-serving Dutch airfreight specialist Rinaldo Vels. The new enterprise is particularly targeting non-IATA-licensed forwarders, courier companies, trucking companies, e-commerce forwarders, and next-gen digital forwarders.

Rinaldo Vels
Rinaldo Vels.

Based near Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS) – Europe’s fourth-largest air cargo hub – and fully licensed by IATA, Wholesale by Vels is combining the traditional principle of consolidating smaller shipments to achieve better rates, with the added benefits of expertise in optimal routes and carriers, and access to IATA carriers’ capacity for non-accredited agents. The company says it is strictly neutral, and will only deal with transport intermediaries.

The initial focus of Wholesale by Vels is on outbound services to Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the US, and inbound capacity from Asia and the USA. Despite the shortage of cargo space on many key routes, Vels is confident that his company can provide attractive solutions for those with air cargo to move: “Even in this digital age, it is very much a matter of contacts, reputation, and trust – and we have all three.

“But for me, it is also very important to show the true buying rates to our customers. We agree on terms and conditions, as well a pre-set profit margin, and this provides total transparency to the customer,” he says.

Vels is a well-known figure on the Dutch airfreight circuit, having spent over 20 years in key positions with forwarders, cargo handlers, aviation truckers, and a major wholesaler.

He continues: “The future of air cargo is clearly digital, but we have a new generation of companies and staff whose strong digital competence and capabilities are not matched by practical knowledge and experience. To be successful, you need both.

“We are a full-service cargo wholesale company. For modern airfreight operators of all sizes, Wholesale by Vels complements and supports today’s digital systems and front ends, with the equally important practical knowledge of which routes and carriers work best, and how you can still achieve viable buying rates that win business and leave room for profit.”

Vels believes his company’s main appeal will initially be for freight agents who do not hold IATA accreditation, and for overseas-based forwarders who have no operation in Amsterdam. “But consolidation will also play an important role, providing a cost advantage and space for those who may be unable to access these in their own right.”

Wholesale by Vels is also providing bespoke solutions for customers with larger volumes that cannot easily be accommodated due to currently restricted linehaul capacity: “We had operated three full charters out of China, even before we received our IATA accreditation,” he adds.

Vels is already thinking beyond Amsterdam for the future of his new business: “I am currently working on a few projects that must remain confidential for now, but I admit I am very keen to expand wherever it makes sense. It would not surprise me if the Wholesale by Vels brand soon goes beyond The Netherlands – perhaps as part of a joint venture, or possibly through franchising,” he adds.

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