As this blog has pointed out several times in the past, 2013 has not been an outstanding year for air cargo transport.
For example, consider the numbers associated with IAG Cargo. According to an article on Air Cargo World, the company's commercial revenues fell by 14.1 percent in the third quarter of 2013.
"Air cargo demand remains weak, and our results have been significantly impacted by exchange rate movement," IAG Cargo managing director Steve Gunning said.
Russi Batiwala, CEO of Chapman Freeborn, agreed.
"There was a real lull in 2013 and not through any fault of our own," Batiwala said. "The market just seemed to disappear for a while."
However, Batiwala added that he was feeling much more positive about 2014. In addition to the strengthening Chinese and other Asian markets, he felt that the American economy would improve to the point where it would help the market recover.
"The general opinion is it's not all gloom and doom out there," he said, referring to recent meetings with others involved in the industry. "At the end of the day, he who adds the most value and he who offers the best service will succeed."
One way Chapman Freeborn hopes to do this is through advanced technology, such as a new tracking system that is meant to let brokers see all the flights that the company has booked.
There are other ways to improve transparency and efficiency as well. One way is to adopt proof of condition services like CargoSnapshot, so the company has an easier time keeping track of everything it ships.