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Logistics Ecosystem at Brucargo

Article submitted by: Brussels Airport a TIACA Trustee Member

How do you perceive the progression within the logistics ecosystem at Brucargo?
Dimitri Bettoni – Head of Cargo Product & Network Development – At Brussels Airport, we interpret the progress within the Brucargo logistics ecosystem as exceptionally positive and dynamic. Brucargo’s logistics environment has been adapting to worldwide trends, for instance, the swift surge of business-to-business (b2b) e-commerce and the escalating necessity for proficient international trade. Consequently, we’ve seen marked improvements in infrastructure, technological integrations, and partnerships that have significantly boosted the overall growth and streamlining of the logistics ecosystem. Brucargo has effectively established itself as a strategic epicenter in the core of Europe, providing smooth linkages between worldwide markets and propelling the expansion of various sectors. Our goal is to draw in business that brings added value, and we’ve been achieving this effectively in recent years. We’ve maintained and will continue to concentrate on the following sectors, specifically: Life sciences and pharmaceuticals, perishable commodities, live animals, and further advancement of b2b e-commerce. Additionally, we consistently observe and adapt to market progressions, ensuring Brucargo continues to lead in the ever-evolving logistics environment, and we do this in close collaboration with Air Cargo Belgium.

Air Cargo Belgium (ACB) operates as the ambassador of the air cargo community, with the goal of transforming BRUcargo into an appealing, efficient, innovative, and successful logistics platform. ACB collaborates intimately with airlines, handlers, forwarders, the airport authority, and other key players, setting strategic objectives, instigating enhanced processes, spearheading projects, and interacting with government bodies to tackle mutual interests. Through robust community collaboration, ACB aims to serve the air cargo community holistically and contribute to the BRUcargo ecosystem’s development and the overall progression of the industry.

Situated in building 706 at BRUcargo, ACB is committed to cultivating enduring success, increasing cargo volumes, improving operational efficiency, delivering superior services, and supporting effective marketing and communication endeavors. In an effort to bolster our ecosystem, BAC also contributes to multimodality, mobility, and accessibility. For instance, a new bike bridge was inaugurated earlier this year.

Could you provide an overview of the real estate evolution at Brussels Airport? What forthcoming projects are you introducing at the airport, particularly concerning cargo?
Sarina Wolfs – Head of Logistics Real Estate – The evolution of real estate at Brussels Airport forms a crucial component of our comprehensive growth agenda. We are perpetually working to upgrade our infrastructure to accommodate the escalating needs of our stakeholders, encompassing cargo operators. At present, our attention is on enlarging and modernizing our cargo facilities to handle greater volumes and serve specialized sectors like pharmaceuticals, perishables, live animals through our Animal Care and Inspection Center, and finally e-commerce. We are channeling investments into cutting-edge cargo handling amenities, progressive warehousing capacities, and bespoke temperature-regulated zones to guarantee top-notch quality and efficiency.

These advancements are intended to reinforce Brussels Airport’s status as a favored cargo portal in Europe and offer our clients unparalleled facilities for their operations. The latest development in the pipeline is our Brucargo Central project, situated in the heart of Brucargo, which will offer 35,000 square meters of warehouse space, neighboring offices, and a parking tower. This project is slated for completion in 2025.

How does Brussels Airport today measure up in terms of sustainability? What are your collaborative efforts with the Brussels cargo community in regard to sustainability?
Dimitri Bettoni – Sustainability ranks as a top priority, serving as one of the three strategic cornerstones at Brussels Airport. We are fully committed to reducing our ecological footprint. To enhance our sustainability stance, we have rolled out numerous initiatives. These encompass curbing our carbon emissions via energy-saving infrastructure, advocating the employment of renewable energy resources, and refining waste handling practices. As a prominent participant in the European Stargate project, Brussels Airport plays a key role in piloting and advancing a range of sustainable initiatives. We work hand in hand with the BRUcargo community to formulate and bring sustainable solutions to life. For example, we engage with cargo partners to endorse sustainable operations, inspire the application of alternative fuels, and ease the integration of environmentally friendly technologies. Moreover, we are an active player in industry dialogues and initiatives aimed at propagating sustainable practices throughout the entire supply chain. Alongside the Brussels cargo community, our mission is to push the envelope on sustainability within the logistics industry.

What is your perspective on investment prospects in cargo real estate at the airport?
Sarina Wolfs – At Brussels Airport Company, our approach involves taking complete ownership of development and full lifecycle management. For instance, we strive for a high level of standardization and optimization within our cargo zone real estate portfolio, while acknowledging the technical needs of the users. This strategy allows us to retain flexibility in the utilization of the buildings, execute our sustainability strategy optimally, and reconstruct the zone in alignment with our master plan.

In what ways does digitization enhance efficiency, quality, and sustainability at Brucargo?
Dimitri Bettoni – Digitization is a key instrument in promoting efficiency, quality, and sustainability at Brucargo. By integrating digital technologies and solutions, we can refine operational procedures, advance cargo tracking and visibility, and simplify information flow throughout the supply chain. The utilization of digitization allows us to fine-tune cargo operations, diminishing handling durations and curtailing errors, thus boosting overall efficacy. The access to real-time data analytics and insights promotes well-informed decision-making and empowers us to consistently elevate our services and satisfy customer demands regarding quality and dependability. Additionally, digitization provides us with the ability to track and control sustainability metrics, thereby helping us pinpoint areas for enhancement and apply focused initiatives to mitigate environmental impact. Through the medium of digitization, Brucargo is charting the path for a more efficient, sustainable, and customer-focused logistics ecosystem.