Indian carrier SpiceJet has taken delivery of its first freighter and is planning on starting cargo services on 18 September under a new business unit – SpiceExpress.
The airline will the converted Boeing 737-700 between Delhi, Bengaluru, Guwahati, Amristar, Hong Kong and Kabul as it looks to tap into the strong demand in the Indian air freight industry. The first freighter will be operated from Delhi to Bengaluru.
SpiceJet also plans to introduce another three more 737-700Fs by the end of March 2019, eventually bringing its cargo capacity to around 900 tonnes.
SpiceJet will be the first domestic carrier to start dedicated air cargo services in India.
Spicejet chairman and managing director, Ajay Singh said: “With our proven operational capability, this is an extension of our ‘belly cargo’ service to a ‘dedicated freighter’ with Boeing 737 aircraft. We are very excited about the tremendous potential the logistics industry offers.
“There is a huge untapped market for air cargo services in India and a player like SpiceJet – with its low-cost structure – is best suited to address this need.”
“The freighter aircraft will be acuired on oure operating leases and havent incurred any majpr CAPEX, while the ground operations will be either self-handled by the existing SpiceJet ground infratructure or shall be outsourced till we develop a certain scale of operations,” he added.
The freighter services will address time and temperature sensitive shipments across verticals like letters and credit cards under banking, blood, organs and pharmaceuticals.
Other shipments are set to include automobiles, apparels, electronics, e-commerce and live animals. The airline will also move perishables to the Middle East.