Amazon looks to be taking delays and back-ups at U.S. ports into its own hands — by taking to the skies to move its own cargo across international borders. The e-commerce giant is looking to purchase used long-range Boeing Co. and Airbus SE cargo planes, Bloomberg reported.
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Sources familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that the company was looking for refurbished cargo versions of the Boeing 777-300ER and the Airbus A330-300, two of the largest twin-engine passenger jets flying today. For five years, Amazon has relied on mid-size Boeing 767 craft and narrow-body Boeing 737s, which make up Amazon Air, the company’s fleet of cargo planes that helped reduce reliance on third-party carriers.
Now, Amazon is looking to step up its capabilities with larger craft. Boeing’s 777-300ERSF will hold 25% more cargo than the aerospace company’s current freighter, Bloomberg said.
In addition to the refurbished planes, the retailer is seeking crews to fly them, sources told Bloomberg. Currently, the Amazon Air fleet is flown by third-party contractors, including Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Inc., Air Transport Services Group Inc. and Sun Country Airlines Holdings Inc. The planes currently fly almost exclusively within North America and Europe.
The acquisition of new planes and hiring of new crews would make it possible for Amazon to speed the delivery of products from China.
Since the pandemic, Amazon has been relying on chartered international flights to carry goods from Asian factories. The acquisition of new, larger cargo jets would give the company more control over transporting merchandise across the Pacific.
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Amazon shares rose 0.67%, or close to $22 this morning; FedEx and UPS stock prices also rose.
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