As a Professor who comes from an operational transportation and marketing background, I try to ensure that my students get as close as possible to a real business environment while they study with me.
Earlier this year BSL’s MSc Global Marketing students had the opportunity to work with IATA, the International Air Transport Association, on an assignment to produce marketing strategy ideas for the air cargo industry in the Suisse Romande region (French-speaking part of Switzerland).
Industries such as watchmaking, pharmaceuticals, fine chemicals, high-tech and precision engineering are major drivers of exports from Switzerland and contribute significantly to the local economy in the Suisse Romande region. Air cargo is a major component of the supply chain of these industries and therefore has a primary role in enabling these industries to continue to support their customers around the world.
On a global basis air cargo is also a vital link in fast supply chains. IATA estimates that goods worth in excess of $5 trillion are transported by air annually, some 35% of world trade by value. The airline business in general, and air cargo in particular suffers from chronically low returns on investment and is constantly searching for opportunities to improve profitability.
Our students were tasked with examining the real business environment for the air cargo industry in the region and to develop strategy ideas to generate a sustainable, profitable industry for the future.
A number of practical, actionable ideas were generated that have the potential to increase revenues and/or reduce costs on a sustainable basis, thus meeting or even exceeding expectations for the project.
Two of the students decided to deepen their involvement and have gone on to work on consulting and research projects for the industry at a national level for Interest Group Air Cargo Switzerland (IG Air Cargo).
Nick Blake, BSL Professor