Emirates SkyCargo celebrates five years in Quito

Last month, when Emirates SkyCargo celebrated five years of “uplifting roses from Ecuador,” the news was picked up in Air Cargo World, Air Cargo Week, and other major trade journals across the globe. After all, it’s big news.

As its GSSA in Colombia and Ecuador, PrimeAir and parent company Prime Group wish to congratulate the carrier on its great success here.

After all, PrimeAir and Emirates SkyCargo have been working closely together since Emirates first entered the market in 2013 – in Quito. And just this past summer, the partnership was significantly enhanced as the Dubai-based carrier selected PrimeAir to serve as GSSA for Emirates SkyCargo’s operation in Colombia, too.

Says Prime Group CEO Roger Paredes, “They were obviously very pleased with the high caliber service we provide – and we are so proud to be part of their continued success on the South American continent.”

PrimeAir provides in-country sales, marketing, and accounting for Emirates SkyCargo, in addition to airport services such as warehouse supervision, and ULD control.

Acknowledging that the agreement with Emirates SkyCargo is a feather in the company’s cap, Prime Group is pleased to share the good news here with our readers, on behalf of one of our most honored customers and partners, Emirates SkyCargo.

Uplifting roses with four weekly freighters in Ecuador

Roses are one of the most popular export commodities from Ecuador and are renowned for their vibrant color and long shelf life. Over the last five years Emirates SkyCargo has been facilitating exports of Ecuadorian roses as well as other flowers and perishables through its freighter operations to Quito.

Emirates SkyCargo commenced its freighter operations to the Ecuadorian capital in December 2013 with a once a week service. However, due to growth in demand and trade flows from Ecuador, the air cargo carrier increased the frequency of its freighter flights. Currently, Emirates SkyCargo’s Boeing 777 freighter aircraft uplift cargo four times a week from Quito.

Since December 2013, Emirates SkyCargo has helped transport over 50,000 tonnes of Ecuadorian exports from Quito. Fresh flowers including roses form the bulk of export commodities transported on the freighters. In 2017 alone, close to 12,500 tonnes of fresh flowers were flown from Quito to other parts of Emirates’ network in Europe, Middle East, and Asia.

High season for flower exports lasts between August and February but the peak demand for roses occurs in late January and early February in the run up to Valentine’s Day, which requires additional freighter capacity to be deployed to meet demand.

More recently, Emirates SkyCargo has also helped promote the growth of exports of perishables such as mangoes and baby bananas from Ecuador to markets such as Germany, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, and Singapore. With its global network of over 155 destinations Emirates SkyCargo facilitates the development of new export opportunities and makes an important contribution to the local economy in Ecuador where more than 100,000 people are dependent on the floriculture sector.

With Emirates Fresh, the carrier’s three-tiered suite of specialized solutions, flowers and other perishables from Ecuador retain their freshness and longevity during their journey. Emirates SkyCargo’s modern fleet of Boeing 777 freighters have controlled temperature zones set up inside the aircraft ensuring that perishable shipments travel at the right temperature.

Emirates SkyCargo, the freight division of Emirates, is the largest international airline cargo operator in the world. With an unrivalled route network, the carrier connects cargo customers to over 160 cities across six continents and operates in many of the world’s fastest developing markets.

While Emirates SkyCargo offers cargo capacity on its entire fleet, it’s dedicated fleet of freighters includes 13 Boeing 777-Fs and one Boeing 747-F. The carrier operates state-of-the-art cargo facilities at its dual hub locations in Dubai International Airport (DXB) and Dubai World Central (DWC).

PrimeAir expands with Emirates at BOG

It’s always good to hear when a General Sales and Service Agent lands an agreement with an international cargo carrier – especially in today’s highly competitive environment.

But when a GSSA like PrimeAir gets to announce it is significantly expanding its South American operation due to a new agreement with Emirates SkyCargo, it’s a shout heard around the world.

“This is really big news,” says Roger Paredes, CEO of Miami-based Prime Group, under which PrimeAir operates. “Not just because it is a long and arduous process to be appointed as a GSSA, but because Emirates is so highly respected around the world.”

Emirates is consistently voted one of the world’s best airlines, and its SkyCargo division is ranked the largest cargo airline worldwide, just behind FedEx. Starting in August, the carrier will provide service (via Avianca) between Bogota and both Ft. Lauderdale and Orlando where cargo will connect with an Emirates B777 to Dubai International Airport and beyond. This new service complements Emirates’ existing schedule from neighboring Quito to Amsterdam and beyond.

“They are very selective who they work,” he added. “So when Emirates expanded into Bogota, naturally they went with PrimeAir, one of the best-known names in the Colombian freight-forwarding community.”

Actually, Sky Cargo was already quite familiar with the high caliber service PrimeAir provides. They were appointed as the carrier’s GSSA the day they began flying into Ecuador in 2013. Now, the time-tested relationship with Emirates is expanding here in Colombia.

“Emirates is obviously very pleased with how we’ve been performing,” Paredes continued. As a GSSA, PrimeAir will provide in-country sales, marketing, and accounting for SkyCargo, in addition to airport services such as warehouse supervision, and ULD control.

As a result of the new agreement, PrimeAir now has an opportunity to expand its own overall operation – and presence – at the Bogota station, where they have been serving as Atlas Air’s GSSA for more than two years.

“The airlines clearly see the top quality work we do for them – in fact, a very good job from the cargo sales side, filling up the planes,” noted Paredes. The cargo coming out of Colombia is 99 percent perishables, the majority of which is flowers – which continues to be the primary commodity for PrimeAir in Latin America since its founding in Quito in 2001.

“Being involved in this business for so many years, we have a name. When someone wants a GSSA in Ecuador, they think PrimeAir. And in Colombia, it is a similar story,” says Paredes. “Everyone always thinks of us here.”

But at the end of the day, it is a big feather in the cap of the entire PrimeAir team, to be able to say they represent an international carrier as prestigious as Emirates.

“Emirates is respected all around the world for their on-time performance and reputation as a well organized, professional operation. So to be aligned with such a company actually serves as selling point for us among our freight forwarder customers,” Paredes added.

“After all, as the saying goes, ‘you are judged by the company you keep’.”

PrimeAir serves to make cargo sales, operations, handling, and accounting easy and reliable for airlines operating across the globe. Based in Miami, the company benefits from being part of the Prime Group, a network of coordinated logistics and freight specialists with offices and representatives worldwide. For information, call 305-592-2044, email info@primeair.aero, or visit www.primeair.aero