Rafael Figueroa
Director General
Aeroméxico Cargo
View from the Top

Pharma Takes to the Skies for Deliveries

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 13:21

Q: What are the greatest challenges in health for Aeroméxico Cargo? How do you overcome them?

A: Pharma is one of the top five products we transport. Due to quality and security concerns with land transportation services, the industry has increased the volume of pharma products transported by air. We have been offering specialized services for the domestic market for the last three years and our market penetration has grown over 100 percent each year. Today, we transport around 12,000 tons of pharma products every year, which represents 90 percent of the domestic air pharma market. Our biggest strength is Aeroméxico’s security processes, which make us the most secure airline to fly with. We have invested a lot of resources over the past three years to make sure that 100 percent of our cargo is screened and sterile, which makes us the preferred carrier for most agencies.

Q: What health products does Aeroméxico Cargo manage?

A: In addition to pharma, we also move biomedical products and vaccines. We own thousands of square meters of refrigerated space throughout the world and we have agreements with suppliers such as vaQtec and Envirotainer, which enable us to maintain the cold chain throughout the entire process. The most difficult products to transport are those that require a controlled temperature because they are shipped from the factory to conservation warehouses and then to our customers or final consumers.

Q: How does working in pharma impact your business strategy?

A: The challenge for us is to keep pace; entering the pharmaceutical sector has been our most important achievement so far. Four years ago, we had almost no business in this area and now we manage a large majority of the domestic pharma market. We have become an airline that is flexible, that cares for its clients’ products, employing the correct conditions and delivering the products undamaged. Previously, we moved 20-30 tons per month in pharma, whereas now we move over 600 tons per month.

Q: As you already manage so much domestic cargo, what is your objective for the rest of 2017?

A: The pharmaceutical market is much bigger than what is being moved via air freight today. We are a reliable option and we have a commercial strategy for the pharmaceutical market that is very aggressive. Our goal is to move more pharma and to continue as a leader in air freight. As an airline, we prefer to work with high-yield products. However, Aeroméxico’s network is so large that it operates many flights on which we can accommodate many types of medicine and cargo; for example, if something very urgent needs to go to Monterrey in the next two hours, we can do it. Aeroméxico moves one of every five kilos of the Mexican air cargo market and we want to keep growing at the same pace.

Q: What are your plans for pharma and health in Mexico?

A: Aeroméxico Cargo has an investment plan of several million pesos that will help further strengthen our position in the national pharmaceutical market. In addition, with the objective of increasing participation in the international market, in December 2016, we formally finished remodeling our facilities in the New Mexico City International Airport (NACIM), an investment of several million dollars that positions us as the company with the most modern facilities and with the highest standards of safety and quality.

Finally, in February 2017 we launched the Health Chain Service, which will first target the European, US and South American markets. It will have the capacity to offer our clients specialized active and passive solutions to achieve a cold chain that includes freezing, refrigeration and temperature maintenance during our cross-border flights thanks to strategic alliances with the most recognized and certified companies in the market such as Envirotainer, vaQtec and Cold Chain Technologies.