Rhenus Air & Ocean and Wings for Aid join forces for efficient disaster relief

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July 9, 2019: Rhenus Air & Ocean and Wings for Aid have signed an agreement to bridge the so-called 'last mile' gap in delivering relief goods in areas grappling from disasters. 

Wings for Aid has an innovative delivery system consisting of unmanned small airplanes and smart technology that allows self-landing boxes of emergency aid to land with great precision in otherwise inaccessible places. Rhenus Air & Ocean looks after the logistics needed to get the delivery system to its destination quickly and efficiently, anywhere in the world.

"The goal of our partnership is to combine our growth ambition, by offering innovative logistics solutions, with the drive to also have a positive social impact," said Frank Roderkerk, regional manager Air & Ocean Benelux of the Rhenus Group.


(Left to right) Barry Koperberg, director of Wings for Aid, and Frank Roderkerk, regional manager Air & Ocean Benelux or the Rhenus Group

The system can be used for disaster relief, but also for the planned supply of medicines in remote areas. 

In 2018, the system was tested in the Dominican Republic, delivering 20 kgs of emergency aid per flight. Based on the positive results, work is now underway on the next generation of unmanned aircraft capable of carrying 120 kgs per flight, over a distance of 250 kms, and then returning for the next flight. Further tests will be carried out this summer. 

"Our goal is to provide emergency aid where no one else can," said Barry Koperberg, director of Wings for Aid, "and to be there within 48 hours, anywhere in the world. The strength and network of Rhenus Air & Ocean will help us achieve that ambition."

The Rhenus Group has business interest in areas like contract logistics, freight logistics and port logistics. Dutch start-up Wings for Aid helps humanitarian organisations reach people in need in the most inaccessible places.