Day two at Munich, and the numbers here have swelled considerably. Dachser’s stand in particular seems to have attracted vast swathes of people, looking at its cool new warehouse technology, ILO, which creates a digital image of all packages, a productivity game-changer. It has also received its first hydrogen truck: only 10,000 or so more to go…

So far, the most animated and engaging interview has been with Flexport explaining why the Shopify Logistics and Deliverr deal is not a pivot, but has been part of the strategy all along.

Urban myths about Flexport abound, but The Loadstar can confirm that it claimed: 1) the money is not going to run out any time soon; 2) its freighters were not contracted at crazy high rates, but at March 2020 rates; and 3) that its fate is not intertwined with broken Californian banks.

(Also – and this is weird paranoia – it doesn’t own Slack, and isn’t watching your internal company messages)

German digital forwarder Forto, meanwhile, is expanding again after some “right-sizing” in form of job cuts last year, and is moving on with its growth plans.

Over in the air freight hall, AF-KLM has been anxious to publicise that its partnership with CMA CGM Air Cargo has no bearing on its relationship with Ceva (or Bollore, or Gefco…). And while other airlines are struggling to reconcile the need for emission-free operations with the realities of their business, AF-KLM appears to have a firmer plan than most.

Aside from the environment, e-commerce and technology are key topics: Lufthansa Cargo and Champ have said they would “actively drive the transition to ONE Record”,  in what will be good news for IATA.

In a mark of how the past three years have impacted businesses, the biggest stand changes are that Virgin Atlantic, previously a mainstay of Munich with a series of impressively large stands and entertainment, has scaled down quite considerably. And IAG Cargo is nowhere to be seen.

But the space has been happily taken up by Cargolux, not previously known for splashing the cash on marketing.

More soon.

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