Today, Sri-Lanka based freight forwarder EFL announced that it will base its North American Cargo Distribution Center at Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT).
An expanding forwarder presence at the airport is good news for PIT as the airport seeks to leverage its geographic location between the Midwest and Northeast to attract cargo flows currently moving through major hubs like Chicago (ORD) and New York (JFK).
As for air cargo capacity, the Sri-Lankan freight forwarder will utilize capacity on one of Qatar Airways Cargo’s twice-weekly 777F flights into PIT from the carrier’s hub in Doha (DOH). EFL first trialed the PIT flights with a 90-tonne shipment of goods earlier this year, in May.
According to a statement from EFL, the DOH-PIT service offers its customers in Asia a solution for 72-hour transit time from the Asia-Pacific region to regional distribution centers and retail stores in the United States. Pittsburgh is also located midway between Chicago and New York, granting reasonably convenient access to two of the largest air cargo markets in the U.S. Furthermore, the freight forwarder said the airport will allow it to have a fast turnover of cargo in comparison to more traditional and congested gateways, like Chicago (ORD) and New York (JFK).
EFL has long been involved in the logistics of “fast fashion,” which prioritizes getting clothing from factories in Asia to retail stores in the U.S. and Europe as quickly as possible. In 2016, EFL was behind the launch of Emirates services to Rickenbacker Airport (LCK) in Columbus, Ohio, for L Brands, the 3PL told Air Cargo World at the time.