Technology advances with the combination of imagination, talent, and cooperation between the players and authority, to reach a final solution and move forward from challenging situations. Prior to the pandemic we know that air cargo traffic had been a rising trend; however, the whole aviation industry was hit during the first period of the pandemic. We experienced the most significant depression in aviation history, whether it be passenger or cargo flights. The conditions we faced, the inability to operate scheduled flights, and the humanitarian need for cargo were very different to what usually made cargo a shining star. The combination of unprecedented circumstances and urgent needs plus the cooperation that reinforced this, accelerated the digital processes in cargo.
Making cargo fast and smart was initiated by IATA with six smart objectives, and later gained a new dimension with the EPIC platform. I would like to proudly state that Hitit was among the first technology companies involved in both these initiatives. We have gained tremendous momentum during the Covid-19 period by demonstrating the power of our world-class technology in the fields of passenger service system, operation planning, accounting, merchandising, and travel solutions. Air cargo is our latest business line, and when we talk about aviation, we are well passed the times when only scheduled passenger flights came to mind. Air cargo is now a major aviation player and is ready to embrace digital technologies. Hitit air cargo solutions have brought new breath to the cargo industry with its digital transformation capacity.
A Real Challenge: An over-populated supply chain
The main problem with integrating smart technologies into cargo is having too many participants in the supply chain. Each supply chain member must speak the same language, and this is the main challenge. At that point, digital air cargo is the recognition that supply chains are moving faster than ever. Besides, unfortunately, we know that even big companies still work with and are holding on to old technologies; sadly this delays the penetration of smart technologies into the industry. At Hitit, we observed these challenges before we entered the cargo arena. Hitit's Crane CGO and Crane DOM solutions are cost-effective answers that neutralize the negative aspects of both challenges.
At Hitit, we deliver the concept of a one-stop-shop to all our partner airlines, regardless of their size or business model, whether an ambitious low- cost start-up or an established full-service carrier looking to modernize, with the right tools to achieve their goals both today and tomorrow. At this point, air cargo is an integral part of this holistic approach, and now all our new customers can utilize our air cargo solution however they wish. I am confident that in the near future we will witness the spread of Hitit's smart cargo solutions worldwide.
The future of air cargo is brighter than you think
Air cargo has just begun to receive the attention it needs. The extraordinary conditions triggered by the pandemic have changed the perspective of air cargo, making it a much more integral part of our lives. Even though it is still behind 2019 data, air cargo is on an unusual rise. I think that this trend will increase even more, and it will exceed the pre-2019 growth forecasts for the future of air cargo. There is a lot of room for improvement in air cargo in terms of technology and digitalization, and thus I believe this situation will attract talent into the cargo business.