The investment marks the next step in DHL Express’s expansion of its intercontinental air network to meet customer demand in fast-growing international express shipping markets. First deliveries are scheduled for 2022.
“Although the current health crisis has pushed pause on several areas of life, global trade did not stand still,” John Pearson, CEO at DHL Express, said. “Fueled by globalization, digitalization and the unprecedented demand of our customers during the recent peak season, our global e-commerce volume grew by more than 40 percent in Q4. With the order of eight new wide body freighter aircraft, we underline our conviction that e-commerce is an enduring megatrend. This is why we decided to act early and kick-off 2021 with this investment in our future.”
The world’s largest twin-engine freighter, the B777 aircraft contribute to DHL’s committed sustainability goals due to their fuel efficient technology reducing CO2 emissions by 18 percent compared to the legacy B747-400s.
“A highly efficient and reliable aviation network is key to our service capabilities enabling future growth,” Travis Cobb, executive vice president of global network operations and aviation at DHL Express, said. “We are committed to providing the highest quality and efficient services to our customers at the fastest possible transit times. At the same time, we are also committed to reduce our carbon emissions by modernizing our fleet with the most efficient aircraft type that is available in the industry. The Boeing 777 fits well into our intercontinental network and perfectly complements our sustainability goal to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”
The 777 Freighter allows DHL Express to make fewer stops and reduce associated landing fees on long-haul routes, resulting in the lowest trip cost of any large freighter.
Preceding the new order, DHL Express had already taken delivery of the first 10 new B777F aircraft as part of an original order of 14 aircraft made in 2018. These timely deliveries ensured that DHL could accommodate customers’ unprecedented demand during the peak shipping season last year.
Boeing’s 2020 World Air Cargo Forecast anticipates a significant increase in demand for new and converted freighters with a fleet growth of more than 60 percent over the next 20 years. This reflects in the growing demand for cross border time definite shipments DHL Express is experiencing. For this reason, both companies also agreed on options and purchase rights for four additional planes.
With this step, DHL Express underlines its long-term commitment as an enabler of trade around the globe. The company operates over 260 dedicated aircraft with 17 partner airlines with over 600 daily flights across 220 countries and territories.