Do you want to start an air cargo company and need to write a plan? If YES, here is a sample air cargo business plan template & feasibility report. Air cargo business is one of the few businesses that are restricted to location and of course the presence of airports and it requires core professionals to handle.
It is a business that an investor with the right skills and connection can start. Below is a sample air cargo company business plan template that will help you successfully launch your own business.
A Sample Air Cargo Company Business Plan Template
Table of Content
- 1. Industry Overview
- 2. Executive Summary
- 3. Our Products and Services
- 4. Our Mission and Vision Statement
- 5. Job Roles and Responsibilities
- 6. SWOT Analysis
- 7. MARKET ANALYSIS
- 8. Our Target Market
- 9. SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY
- 10. Sales Forecast
- 11. Publicity and Advertising Strategy
- 12. Our Pricing Strategy
- Air Cargo Business Plan – Financial Projections and Costing
- 13. Startup Expenditure (Budget)
- 14. Sustainability and Expansion Strategy
1. Industry Overview
The Global Cargo Airlines industry includes businesses that provide air transportation for commercial and private cargo on either scheduled or nonscheduled routes. The industry also includes express services and air transportation that is part of a national postal system, while courier services are excluded from this industry’s operations.
Some of the key factors that will contribute to growth in this industry include growth in the manufacturing sector, consumption, international trade and also increase in technology reliance will provide new opportunities for logistics consulting and advisory services, particularly for distribution chain networks and logistics. We are not ruling out the fact that technology can also cut some jobs in the industry.
The Global Cargo Airlines Industry is indeed a very thriving industry in most countries of the world. It is a major sector of the economy of the united states and it generates over 1 billion annually from more than 6,275 registered and licensed air cargo / freight packing and logistics companies.
The industry is responsible for the employment of over 31,785 people. Experts project the industry to grow at a 1.9 percent annual rate between 2014 and 2019. FedEx Express and UPS Airlines Inc have a dominant market share in this industry in the United States.
Research conducted by IBISWORLD shows that over the five years to 2019, the Global Cargo Airlines industry has experienced constrained growth amid a chronic excess of cargo capacity and mounting competition from maritime transportation. Additionally, demand for industry services has remained relatively weak during the five-year period despite rising global income levels and increased production activity among developed economies.
In fact, the total value of world trade has decreased at an annualized rate of 0.4 percent over the five years to 2019. At the same time, substantial declines in the world price of crude oil have prevented industry operators from generating revenue through fuel surcharge fees, further limiting industry growth. Overall, industry revenue is estimated to increase at an annualized rate going forward.
Starting and operating an air cargo company can be capital intensive and challenging, but the truth is that it can be rewarding at the same time. One good thing about the industry is that it is open for both big time investors who have the capacity to start the business with their own cargo airplane and aspiring entrepreneurs who may want to start as middlemen between air cargo operators and customers.
2. Executive Summary
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is a registered and licensed air cargo services company that will be based in New York City – New York. We are in business to provide air cargo services such as domestic air transit deliveries, international air transit deliveries, ground deliveries, messengers and local deliveries et al.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. has been able to secure all relevant licenses and permits to operate throughout the United States and other countries of the world. We will ensure that we abide by the rules and regulations guiding The Freight Packaging industry.
Our customers can be rest assured that they will get quality services at competitive rates. We will ensure the safety of goods under our care and our customers will get value for their money. At Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. our goal is to provide excellent services to our customers and we pride ourselves on the integrity and competence of our company and our employees.
At Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. we are passionate in the pursuit of excellence and financial success with uncompromising services and integrity which is why we have decided to start our own air cargo services business. We are quite optimistic that our values and quality of service offering will help us drive our business to enviable heights and also help us attract the number of clients that will make the business highly profitable.
We are quite aware that in order to become the number one choice in our city, we must continue to deliver timely and quality services. We are open to the use of latest technology in The Global Cargo Airlines industry. No doubt our excellent customer service and the quality of services we offer will position us to always welcome repeated customers and handle massive deals both from government agencies and industrial giants.
Our client’s best interest will always come first, and everything we do will be guided by our values and professional ethics. We will ensure that we hold ourselves accountable to the highest standards by meeting our client’s needs precisely and completely.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is a family business; it is owned by Spencer James Teddy and his immediate family members. The company will be fully financed by the Spencer JT family. Mr. Spencer James Teddy has a diploma in Transport and Logistics Management, BSc. Business Administration and over 20 years of hands on experience working for some of the leading in companies in the Global Cargo Airlines industry.
3. Our Products and Services
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is established with the aim of maximizing profits in The Global Cargo Airlines industry. We want to compete favorably with leading air cargo/freight packaging and logistics companies in the United States which is why we will ensure that every service carried out meets and even surpass our customers’ expectations.
We will work hard to ensure that Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is not just accepted in New York City – New York but also in other cities in the United States of America and Canada. Our service offerings are listed below;
- Air transportation of cargo
- Air transportation of national postal systems
- Chartered airfreight services
- Scheduled airfreight transportation
4. Our Mission and Vision Statement
Our Vision is to become one of the preferred choice when it comes to air cargo/freight packaging and logistics services in the whole of the United States of America.
Our mission is to ensure that we build a successful air cargo services company that will operate in the whole of the United States of America; a company that will grow to be listed amongst the top 5 air cargo services companies in the whole of the United States of America.
Our Business Structure
Our business structure will be designed in such a way that it can accommodate both full – time employees and part-time/contract staff; those who just want to take some time off to generate additional income.
We intend starting the business with a handful of employees (documentation officers, professional material handlers/yard spotters and back office staff) and some of the available sales and marketing roles will be handled by freelance marketers. Adequate provision and competitive packages have been prepared for all our employees.
At Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. we will ensure that we hire people that are qualified, hardworking, creative, customer centric and are ready to work to help us build a prosperous business that will benefit all the stake holders. As a matter of fact, profit-sharing arrangement will be made available to all our senior management staff and it will be based on their performance for a period of five years or more as agreed by the board of trustees of the company.
For now, we will partner with air cargo operators and contract the maintenance of our planes to a service provider, we don’t intend to maintain a very large overhead from the onset. But as soon as the business grows and stabilizes, we will assemble our own in- house maintenance team. Below are the business structure and the roles that will be available at Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc.;
- Chief Operating Officer (Owner)
- Admin and HR Manager
- Air Cargo and Logistics Manager
- Marketing and Sales Executive (Business Developer)
- Material Handlers/Yard Spotters/Forklifts Operators
- Customer Services Executive/Front Desk Officer
5. Job Roles and Responsibilities
Chief Operating Officer (Owner):
- Increases management’s effectiveness by recruiting, selecting, orienting, training, coaching, counseling, and disciplining managers; communicating values, strategies, and objectives; assigning accountabilities; planning, monitoring, and appraising job results
- Creating, communicating, and implementing the organization’s vision, mission, and overall direction – i.e. leading the development and implementation of the overall organization’s strategy.
- Responsible for fixing prices and signing business deals
- Responsible for providing direction for the business
- Responsible for signing checks and documents on behalf of the company
- Evaluates the success of the organization
Air Cargo and Logistics Manager
- Responsible for coordinating loads and journeys
- Responsible for operating IT systems for the organization
- Responsible for negotiating and agreeing contracts for the organization
- Responsible for developing and confirming schedules
- Responsible for planning for and negotiating technical difficulties
- Responsible for preparing paperwork for regulatory bodies
- Responsible for implementing health and safety standards
- Handles the planning routes and load scheduling for multi-drop deliveries.
- Handles booking in deliveries and liaising with customers.
- Responsible for ensuring all partners in the supply chain are working effectively and efficiently to ensure smooth operations.
- Responsible for developing transportation relationships.
- Responsible for monitoring transport costs
- In charge of negotiating and bargaining transportation prices
- Responsible for dealing with the effects of congestion
Admin and HR Manager
- Responsible for overseeing the smooth running of HR and administrative tasks for the organization
- Design job descriptions with KPI to drive performance management for clients
- Regularly hold meetings with key stakeholders to review the effectiveness of HR Policies, Procedures and Processes
- Maintains office supplies by checking stocks; placing and expediting orders; evaluating new products.
- Ensures operation of equipment by completing preventive maintenance requirements; calling for repairs.
- Defining job positions for recruitment and managing interviewing process
- Carrying out induction for new team members
- Responsible for training, evaluation and assessment of employees
- Responsible for arranging travel, meetings and appointments
- Oversee the smooth running of the daily office activities.
Marketing and Sales Executives (Business Developers)
- Identify, prioritize, and reach out to new clients, and business opportunities et al
- Identifies development opportunities; follows up on development leads and contacts
- Writing winning proposal documents, negotiate fees and rates in line with organizations’ policy
- Responsible for handling business research, market surveys and feasibility studies for clients
- Responsible for supervising implementation, advocate for the customer’s needs, and communicate with clients
- Document all customer contact and information
- Responsible for preparing financial reports, budgets, and financial statements for the organization
- Provides managers with financial analyses, development budgets, and accounting reports
- Responsible for financial forecasting and risks analysis.
- Performs cash management, general ledger accounting, and financial reporting for one or more properties.
- Responsible for developing and managing financial systems and policies
- Responsible for administering payrolls
- Ensuring compliance with taxation legislation
- Handles all financial transactions for the company
- Serves as internal auditor for the company
Material Handlers/Yard Spotters/Forklift Operators
- Responsible for packing goods for transportation
- Responsible for crating goods for transportation
- Responsible for wrapping goods for transportation
- Freight consolidation
- In charge of trade document preparation
- Responsible for storing goods prior to and after freight
- Responsible for handling packing services for motor carrier and storage services
Customer Service Officer
- Welcomes clients and visitors by greeting them in person or on the telephone; answering or directing inquiries.
- Ensures that all contacts with clients (e-mail, walk-In center, SMS or phone) provides the client with a personalized – customer service experience of the highest level
- Through interaction with clients on the phone, uses every opportunity to build client’s interest in the company’s products and services
- Manages administrative duties assigned by the manager in an effective and timely manner
- Consistently stays abreast of any new information on the organizations’ products and, promotional campaigns etc. to ensure accurate and helpful information is supplied to clients when they make enquiries
6. SWOT Analysis
Going by our vision, our mission and the kind of business we want to set up, we don’t have any other option than to follow due process. Following due process involves hiring business consultant to help us conduct SWOT analysis for our business.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. hired the services of a seasoned business consultant with bias in startups in the U.S. to help us conduct a thorough SWOT analysis and to guide us in formulating business strategies that will help us grow our business and favorable compete in the Global Cargo Airlines industry.
Here is a summary from the result of the SWOT analysis that was conducted on behalf of Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc.;
Our strengths are strong management, robust network (serving some of the largest population centers in the U.S.), size advantages, cost advantages, customer loyalty and strong reputation amongst domestic and industry players.
Our business is centrally located in the airport in New York City – New York; our location is in fact one of our major strengths. Another strength that counts for us is the power of our team; our workforce and management. Our team are experts in the Global Cargo Airlines industry.
Our weaknesses are lack of finance, cost structure, lack of scale compared to our peers who have already gained ground in the industry. As a new business which is owned by an individual (family), and we may not have the financial muscle to acquire our cargo airline for now. As a new business, we are also quite aware that it will take time for us to build trust with our clients.
The opportunities that are available to us as an air cargo services company in the United States are online market, new services, new technology, and of course the opening of new markets. We are centrally located in one of the busiest industrial areas in New York and we are open to all the opportunities that the city has to offer. Our business concept also positioned us to be the preferred choice in New York City – New York.
The truth is that there are no standard air cargo company within the area where ours is going to be located; the closest to our proposed location is about 15 miles away. In a nutshell, we do not have any direct competition within our target market area.
Some of the threats that we are likely going to face are mature markets, bad economy (economy downturn), stiff competition, and volatile operational costs. Other threats that are likely going to confront Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is unfavorable government policies, seasonal fluctuations, demographic/social factors, downturn in the economy which is likely going to affect consumers spending and of course emergence of new competitors within the same location where ours is located.
7. MARKET ANALYSIS
- Market Trends
The market trends as it involves the Global Cargo Airlines industry especially in the United States is indeed dynamic and at the same time challenging. But one thing is certain, once an air cargo company can gain credibility, it will be much easier for the company to secure permanent deals/contracts with organizations, big time merchants and warehouse operators who are involved in moving goods and materials from one location to another on a regular basis.
Most players in the Global Cargo Airlines industry are positioning their businesses to maximize profits in the industry. It is an established fact that some of the key factors that will contribute to growth in this industry include growth in the manufacturing sector, consumption, international trade and also increase in technology reliance. We are not ruling out the fact that technology can also cut some jobs in the industry.
Lastly, operators in this industry know that some of the major factors that count positively in this line of business are competence, trust, honesty, good relationship management and of course timely and safe pick-ups and deliveries. Hence, they will ensure that they portray their company in this light.
8. Our Target Market
Our target markets are basically every one; organizations and individual as well who have cause to move documents, goods and materials from one location to another. In other words, our target market is the whole of the United States of America and below is a list of the people and organizations that we have plans to do business with;
- Merchants and Warehouse Operators
- Retailers who would want to move their goods from one location to another via air
- Manufacturers (Chemical manufacturers, and Textiles manufactures et al)
- Corporate organizations who would want to move cargo via air
- Government agencies who have cause to move goods and materials from one location to another locations via cargo
The competitions that exist in the Global Cargo Airlines industry is stiff because anyone that has the finance and business expertise can decide to start this type of business howbeit on a small scale servicing a city or more. Although, the Global Cargo Airlines industry requires some form of training and expertise, but that does not in any way stop any serious-minded entrepreneur to start the business and still make good profit out of it.
The Business model we will be operating on, ease of payment, wide range of services and our excellent customer service culture will definitely count as a competitive advantage for Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. So also, we have a team that can go all the way to give our clients value for their money; a team that are trained and equipped to pay attention to details and deliver cargo and consignments safely, and on time both locally, nationally and international level.
Lastly, our employees will be well taken care of, and their welfare package will be among the best within our category in the industry meaning that they will be more than willing to build the business with us and help deliver our set goals and achieve all our aims and objectives.
9. SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY
The marketing strategy adopted by Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is going to be driven basically by professionalism, excellent customer service, honesty and quality service delivery. We will ensure that we build a loyal customer base. We want to drive sales via the output of our jobs and via referral from our satisfied customers. We are quite aware of how satisfied customers drive business growth especially air cargo/freight packaging and logistics services.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is strategically located and we are going to maximize the opportunities that are available which is why we spent more to locate the business in a location that will be visible and enable us to access our target market.
Our sales and marketing team will be recruited based on their vast experience in the industry and they will be trained on a regular basis so as to be equipped to meet their targets and the overall goal of Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc.
Our goal is to grow Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. to become the leading air cargo services company in New York City – New York which is why we have mapped out strategies that will help us take advantage of the available market and grow to become a major force to reckon with in the Global Cargo Airlines industry.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is set to make use of the following marketing and sales strategies to attract clients;
- Introduce our air cargo services business by sending introductory letters alongside our brochure to corporate organizations, merchants and warehouse operators, households and key stakeholders in New York City – New York
- Print out fliers and business cards and strategically drop them in offices, libraries, public facilities and train stations et al.
- Use friends and family to spread word about our business
- Post information about our company and the services we offer on bulletin boards in places like schools, libraries, and local coffee shops et al
- Place a small or classified advertisement in the newspaper, or local publication about our company and the services we offer
- Leverage on referral networks such as agencies that will attract clients who would need our customized services
- Advertise our business in relevant magazines, newspapers, TV and radio stations
- Attend relevant expos, seminars, and business fairs et al to market our services
- Engage in direct marketing approach
- Encourage the use of Word of mouth marketing from loyal and satisfied students
Join local chambers of commerce and industry to market our services.
10. Sales Forecast
One thing is certain; there would always be individuals and corporate organizations in the United States of America who would always need the services of air cargo companies for the various purposes.
We are well positioned to take on the available market in New York City – New York and we are quite optimistic that we will meet our set target of generating enough income/profits from the first six months of operation and grow the business and our clientele base beyond New York City – New York to other cities in the United States of America where we intend marketing our services.
We have been able to examine the Global Cargo Airlines industry and we have analyzed our chances in the industry and we have been able to come up with the following sales forecast. Below are the sales projections for Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc., it is based on the location of our business and the wide range of services that we will be offering;
- First Fiscal Year (FY1): $1.5 million
- Second Fiscal Year (FY2): $2.5 million
- Third Fiscal Year (FY3): $3.5 million
N.B: This projection was done based on what is obtainable in the industry and with the assumption that there won’t be any major economic meltdown and natural disasters within the period stated above. There won’t be any major competitor offering same services as we do within same location. Please note that the above projection might be lower and at the same time it might be higher.
11. Publicity and Advertising Strategy
Any business that wants to grow beyond the corner of the street they are operating must be ready and willing to utilize every available means to advertise and promote the business. We intend growing our business beyond New York City – New York which is why we have perfected plans to build our brand via every available means.
We have been able to work with our brand and publicity consultants to help us map out publicity and advertising strategies that will help us walk our way into the heart of our target market. We are set to become the number one choice for both corporate clients and households in the whole of New York and beyond which is why we have made provisions for effective publicity and advertisement of our air cargo services company.
Below are the platforms Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. intends leveraging on to promote and advertise the business;
- Place adverts on both print (newspapers and magazines) and electronic media platforms
- Sponsor relevant community – based events / programs
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like; Instagram, Facebook, twitter, YouTube, Google + et al to promote our services
- Install our billboards in strategic locations all around New York City – New York
- Distribute our fliers and handbills in target areas
- Contact corporate organizations and households by calling them up and informing them of Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. and the services we offer
- List our company in local directories/yellow pages
- Advertise our company in our official website and employ strategies that will help us pull traffic to the site.
- Ensure that all our staff members wear our branded shirts and all our trucks and vans are well branded with our company logo et al.
Sources of Income
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. will ensure that we leverage on our strength and the opportunities available to us in the U.S. market to generate enough income that will help us drive the business to stability. We will go all the way to explore every available sources of income in the Global Cargo Airlines industry.
Below are the sources we intend exploring to generate income for Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc.;
- Air transportation of cargo
- Air transportation of national postal systems
- Chartered airfreight services
- Scheduled airfreight transportation
- Airfreight transportation integrated services
12. Our Pricing Strategy
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. has perfected our plans to charge competitive rates since we have minimal overhead compared to our competition in the industry.
We will ensure that we leverage on price to win over customers; our prices will be affordable and negotiable. The fact that our business door is open to both individuals and corporate organizations means that we will have different price range for different category of clients. As the business grows, we will continue to review our pricing system to accommodate a wide range of clientele.
- Payment Options
The payment policy adopted by Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is all inclusive because we are quite aware that different customers prefer different payment options as it suits them but at the same time, we will ensure that we abide by the financial rules and regulation of the United States of America. Here are the payment options that Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. will make available to her clients;
- Payment via bank transfer
- Payment via online bank transfer
- Payment via check
- Payment via Point of Sale Machines (POS Machine)
- Payment via bank draft
- Payment via mobile money
In view of the above, we have chosen banking platforms that will enable our client make payment for our services without any stress on their part.
Air Cargo Business Plan – Financial Projections and Costing
Having done our due diligence, this is what it would cost us to start Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. in the United of America;
- The total fee for incorporating the Business in the United States of America – $750.
- The budget for Liability insurance, permits and license – $25,500
- The amount needed to acquire a suitable Office facility in New York City – New York for 6 months (Re – Construction of the facility inclusive) – $250,000.
- The cost for equipping the office (computers, printers, fax machines, furniture, telephones, filing cabins, safety gadgets and electronics et al): $15,000
- The cost of logistics chain software, accounting software, CRM software and Payroll Software – $q3,000
- Other start-up expenses including stationery – $1000
- Phone and Utilities (gas, sewer, water and electric) deposits – ($3,500).
- Operational cost for the first 3 months (salaries of employees, payments of bills et al) – $120,000
- The cost of acquiring forklifts – $17,000
- The cost of launching our official Website: $600
- Additional Expenditure (Business cards, Signage, Adverts and Promotions et al): $2,500
Going by the report from our market research and feasibility studies, we will need about $600,000 to set up a standard air cargo services business in New York City. Please note that we don’t own our cargo airline hence the reason for the budgeted amount.
13. Startup Expenditure (Budget)
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is a family business that is owned and financed by Spencer James Teddy and his immediate family members. They do not intend to welcome any external business partner which is why he has decided to restrict the sourcing of the startup capital to 3 major sources.
- Generate part of the startup capital from personal savings
- Source for soft loans from family members and friends
- Apply for loan from the bank
N.B: We have been able to generate about $100,000 (Personal savings $80,000 and soft loan from family members $20,000) and we are at the final stages of obtaining a loan facility of $500,000 from our bank. All the papers and documents have been signed and submitted, the loan has been approved and any moment from now our account will be credited with the amount.
14. Sustainability and Expansion Strategy
The future of a business lies in the number of loyal customers that they have, the capacity and competence of their employees, their investment strategy and business structure. If all of these factors are missing from a business, then it won’t be too long before the business closes shop.
One of our major goals of starting Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. is to build a business that will survive off its own cash flow without injecting finance from external sources once the business is officially running.
We know that one of the ways of gaining approval and winning customers over is to offer our air cargo services a little bit cheaper than what is obtainable in the market and also to ensure timely and safe deliveries. We are prepared to survive on lower profit margin for a while.
Eagle Express® Air Cargo, Inc. will make sure that the right foundation, structures and processes are put in place to ensure that our staff welfare are well taken of. Our company’s corporate culture is designed to drive our business to greater heights and training and retraining of our workforce is at the top burner.
We know that if that is put in place, we will be able to successfully hire and retain the best hands we can get in the industry; they will be more committed to help us build the business of our dreams.
- Business Name Availability Check: Completed
- Business Incorporation: Completed
- Opening of Corporate Bank Accounts: Completed
- Opening Online Payment Platforms: Completed
- Application and Obtaining Tax Payer’s ID: In Progress
- Application for business license and permit: Completed
- Purchase of Insurance for the Business: Completed
- Renting of office facility and renovation of the facility: Completed
- Conducting Feasibility Studies and market survey: Completed
- Startup Capital Generation: Completed
- Writing of Business Plan: Completed
- Drafting of Employee’s Handbook: Completed
- Drafting of Contract Documents: In Progress
- Design of The Company’s Logo: Completed
- Printing of Promotional Materials: Completed
- Recruitment of employees and drivers: In Progress
- Purchase of the needed forklift, furniture, office equipment, electronic appliances and facility facelift: In progress
- Creating Official Website for the Company: In Progress
- Creating Awareness for the business (Business PR): In Progress
- Health and Safety and Fire Safety Arrangement: In Progress
- Establishing business relationship with key players in the industry (networking and membership of relevant organizations and chambers of commerce) and cargo airline operators: Completed