In a just-released announcement, Germany-based forwarding and logistics giant DB Schenker said it would ground its domestic US overnight air operation — the BAX Network. Schenker said: “The phasing out of the U.S. dedicated air fleet, which represents less than 10% of the company’s business in the Americas, will take place over the next several weeks.”
The network is operated from a hub in Toledo by Air Transport International and Capital Cargo Airlines (both subsidiaries of US-based Air Transport Services Group) using DC-8 and 727 freighters. It was operated as a neutral provider of lift to the US forwarding community, and its closure marks the end of an era, as the BAX network was the last major independent overnight freight network in the US.
Schenker’s CEO said: “As a result of the prolonged recession and spiking fuel prices, more and more of our customers are opting for expedited ground-based solutions instead of domestic air freight, and they are looking for partners who can provide transportation management services rather than transactional transportation.”
Regarding its future in North America, Schenker added: “As part of this repositioning, the company will focus on a smaller number of customers who require North American domestic transportation management solutions.” And, of course, the company pointed out that its international activities in the US would be unaffected by the move.