Wallenborn Middle East Logistics: The UAE RSF leader with sustainability in mind
Few companies worldwide can take pride in sustaining longevity beyond 100 years with internal and external challenges taking a toll on their operations at different times and circumstances.
In Luxembourg, the logistics and trucking company Wallenborn Transports S.A. is a rarity. The company has been in operation for more than 100 years, surviving both World Wars I and II, and in modern times is looked upon for its innovation and market leadership on many fronts.
Today, Wallenborn is Europe’s largest air cargo Road Feeder Services (RFS) operator and the market leader within the Benelux, France, Germany, Italy, and Scandinavia areas. It has the most extensive European network serving over 120 airports.
Wallenborn has 17 offices in 13 countries across Europe and the Middle East, providing offline handling services using its own warehouses and partner warehouses within its entire network. In 2022, the company safely transported 5.2 million tons of different cargo across the world
Wallenborn Middle East
In the Middle East, Wallenborn’s subsidiary, Wallenborn Middle East Logistics, is also making an indelible mark in the transport industry barely 10 years since its operations began.
Wallenborn first opened its office in Dubai, the business capital of the United Arab Emirates, in February 2013. Before the year was over, it inaugurated its office in Sharjah, another major emirate in the UAE. It now has a fleet of over 100 Euro 6 trucks, the current emissions standards in Europe
The company offers a range of RFS services to airlines, forwarders, and integrators across the UAE and the Middle East, which include, Airport-to-airport transportation; Airport-to-warehouse transportation; Warehouse-to-airport transportation; Door-to-door transportation, and; Cross-border transportation.
Michel Welter, General Manager, Wallenborn Middle East Logistics, told Air Cargo Update, the company did well in the last few years and has high hopes its growth will continue.
“It’s been a hell of a journey,” Welter who first came to Dubai in 2015 described his stint in the beginning. “But together with my staff, we developed very well in the last couple of years. We’re still planning to be here in the next 10 years.”
Under Welter’s leadership and guidance, Wallenborn in the Middle East heads for more growth as the region, too, undergoes major economic transformation, particularly in Saudi Arabia.
“We are mainly working for airlines, forwarders, and agents. In the Middle East, our main core of activities is in the UAE,” Welter noted. “We have offices in all major cities—Luxembourg, Milan, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, among others.”
Wallenborn Middle East Logistics is recognized as a leading provider of RFS services in the UAE. It is highly regarded for its reliability, customer service, and commitment to sustainability.
The company has over 100 employees and operates a 24/7 customer service center. Over the past 10 years of its operations in the UAE, it has built a strong track record of delivering cargo on time and safely.
Sustainability is another issue that Wallenborn Middle East Logistics takes seriously. The company has initiated steps to reduce its carbon footprint as well as implement environment-friendly practices and measures long before the world has drummed up efforts to fight climate change.
“We didn’t wait for COP 28. We started our sustainability initiatives three to four years ago,” said Welter. “We saved 480 tons of CO2 emissions for our fleet (during that period).”
Dubai is hosting the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference or Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, more commonly referred to as COP28, from November 30 to December 12, 2023, at the Expo City, Dubai.
Wallenborn takes pride in having trucks that are modern and efficient which helps in their sustainability efforts.
“We renew our fleets on a regular basis. In this industry, it’s important to add new trucks and technology. About 80 percent of our fleet are Euro 6 trucks. It’s an investment. The main thing is sustainability,” said Welter. The Euro 6 trucks are said to be more efficient and environment-friendly.
Modern trucks are not only designed for speed and efficiency but also offer technological advancements like route optimization and management as well as comfort for drivers.
Wallenborn’s efforts to keep up with sustainability have also led it to invest in renewable energy sources like solar panels and electric vehicles. It also uses sustainable materials in its operations and trains employees on sustainable practices.
BOX OUT in Sequence
1920 – The Beginning
Wallenborn Transports S.A. was founded back in 1920 by Metty Wallenborn in Luxembourg. The idea was to be able to transport whatever needed transporting, both nationally and internationally.
1930 – Benz truck for water transport
In the early days, Wallenborn Transports was used to transport just about anything, both nationally and internationally. One of the elements our trucks were used for was to transport water pipes and distributors to facilitate clean drinking water.
First trucking company to publish performance data
In 2009, Wallenborn became the first trucking company to publish performance data measured against Cargo 2000’s service level agreement for road feeder services. Cargo 2000 was a group of over 70 major airlines, freight forwarders, ground handlers, trucking companies, and IT providers.
Its members implemented re-engineered air cargo transportation processes from shipper to consignee using Cargo 2000’s ‘Master Operating Plan’. In compliance with the Cargo 2000 standard, the company measured and reported its performance against key milestones in the road transport journey, bookings processed on-time departure, and on-time arrival. Freight Status Update (FSU) messages were sent to the client airline within 60 minutes of these events.
Wallenborn UAE was established
In February 2013, Wallenborn established Wallenborn Transport Co. LLC in Dubai in order to develop a range of land transport services in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). This expansion was Wallenborn’s next step after observing that airlines and frequencies were growing in the Gulf states and spotting a trend toward higher frequencies of smaller aircraft within the GCC.
Wallenborn opens its second UAE office at Sharjah International Airport. This comes only eight months after Wallenborn opened in Dubai, only 15 km away from Sharjah. The launch in Sharjah was in response to fast-growing demand for Wallenborn’s air cargo trucking services from airlines, forwarders and integrators across the U.A.E.
dnata and Wallenborn
In 2019, Wallenborn Transports completed the acquisition of Agility Global Logistics’ interest in dnata PWC Airport Logistics LLC (DPAL), a Dubai-based premium road feeder services provider. It had since embarked on a partnership with dnata through its ownership in DPAL. The partnership had seen the companies develop new products and services, and enter new markets.