Content Programme

 Interested in contributing on one of our themes? Email max@groundhandling.com

All session times shown are in Singapore Time (SGT), UTC +8

Time converter at worldtimebuddy.com



09:10 - 09:35

Market forecast: Anticipating Asia’s recovery path

Brendan Sobie, Independent Analyst and Consultant, Sobie Aviation

SE Asia was the first global aviation market to feel the cruel blow of the Covid pandemic and the virus shows little sign of abating. More than a year on and key countries in the region are experiencing a new wave of infections and lockdowns. So, when will the storm break? Can operators expect to see a restoration of international travel later this year? And what are the opportunities closer to home within domestic markets that can help sustain us? This session will assess the picture in the SE Asia region.

09:40 - 10:40

The Big Debate: ‘A new strategy for a new age:’ How does Asian aviation adapt to the post-Covid era?

Brendan Sobie, Independent Analyst and Consultant, Sobie Aviation

Javed Malik, Group Chief Operations Officer, AirAsia

Richard Zheng, CEO, TLD Asia

Yacoob Piperdi, CEO, Gateway Services, SATS

Congested skies, capacity constraints and intensive OTP pressures on the ground were – until recently- the dominant topics for the Asian aviation community. Today’s landscape is utterly unrecognisable from that of a year or two ago.
International pax volumes stand at less than 10% with no immediate reprieve in sight and the passenger journey has become infinitely more complex. But opportunity knocks for those with an agile and entrepreneurial outlook, this session will hear, as we explore the smart adaptions operators should be making now to secure a successful future.

Key discussion areas include:
  • Digital innovations: identifying profit enhancing automation and tackling implementation in a low liquidity climate
  • Stakeholder collaboration: redefining airline, handler, airport & supplier partnerships for the pandemic including KPIs/SLAs and the SGHA
  • Employee strategies: upskilling teams for a new aviation age
  • The new normal: passenger expectations, process design and how to stay ahead

Have a question? Please send it to Max Gosney.

10:40 - 10:50

Market Reconnect: Textron GSE introduce the TUG ALPHA 1

Brian Yoder, Senior Engineering Manager, Textron GSE

Join Textron GSE for an up close and personal look at the next generation of narrow-body pushbacks, the TUG ALPHA 1.  Brian Yoder, Senior Engineering Manager, will introduce you to the TUG ALPHA 1, its purpose-built, industry leading design, elevated safety features and superior performance. Understand the technology that drives the TUG ALPHA 1 lithium model and how it can impact your operation by delivering superior energy efficiency and low operational cost.

10:55 - 11:30

Digital trailblazers: Turning crisis into opportunity – the Air Asia story

Javed Malik, Group Chief Operations Officer, AirAsia

In early 2020 with passenger volumes evaporating, aircraft grounded and the world in turmoil – conditions seemed stacked against an ambitious digital innovation strategy. But AirAsia has confounded pandemic adversity by pioneering a digital transformation programme that -one year on- has helped the airline harness critical revenue streams and drive business efficiencies. This session will explore the resulting innovations in passenger boarding, ramp activity and a ‘super app’. How has Air Asia worked with its frontline teams/supply chain to realise digital tools and what can others learn from their story?

11:30 - 14:00

Virtual One-to-One Meetings

14:00 - 14:40

Artificial Intelligence: AI and technology to scale up quickly after the pandemic

David Preuß, Chief Information Officer, Cologne Bonn Airport

Donald Lum, SVP and Head of Group Technology, SATS

Ekkehart Vetter, Chief Technology Officer, INFORM

Jan Willem Kappes, Director Business Development EMEA & APAC, Assaia International

Yusuf Incekera, Head of Ops Centre of Excellence, AirAsia

Aviation is slowly moving out of the crisis. However, it cannot go back to pre-Covid processes. A lot of pre-Covid knowledge and established processes are no longer applicable.
Instead, the industry needs to redesign itself in many aspects for a sustainable and efficient future. Airlines need intelligent operations, innovation, and transformation to scale up quickly back to their previous size and stay competitive. This session will explore the use of AI and data to drive the recovery.

14:45 - 15:15

Skills: Upgrading to the employee 2.0: developing staff talent to triumph in the new normal

William Chew, Head of Learning and Development, dnata

With the spotlight on business efficiency, flexibility and productivity like never before – how can thinking smarter about how we manage our people provide solutions?
This session will look for case study examples of those who are proactively building new competencies, eliminating historic skills gaps and ensuring their employee base is fit for the digital age. How does aviation use the pandemic as the springboard for a more enlightened approach to employee engagement and compete with other business sectors for the best available talent?

15:20 - 16:00

Cargo: Meeting the challenges of India’s Covid crisis

Funda Eraslan, Global Marketing and Communications Manager, Celebi

Kamesh Peri, CEO of Delhi Cargo Terminal, Celebi

Celebi Aviation Delhi’s cargo operation has been on the frontline of bringing in lifesaving medical kit to India as the country vies with a deadly Covid outbreak. This session will profile the frontline stories of the Celebi team and how they have reacted to unscheduled medical relief flights alongside their day jobs in unloading freighters and cargo in the cabin. Activities have been performed at minimal notice and with employees at heightened risk of having to isolate at short notice due to a positive Covid test or a case occurring within their immediate family. Kamesh Peri will detail the approach taking by the leadership team to unprecedented circumstances.​

16:00 - 19:00

Virtual One-to-One Meetings

08:00 - 10:00

Virtual One-to-One Meetings

09:35 - 10:25

Cargo: Getting yourself in trim for the great air cargo opportunity

Beau Paine, Regional Vice President Cargo - OSEA, Menzies Aviation

Thomas Liput, Managing Director Asia Pacific Ground Support and Gate Equipment, JBT Aerotech

Vivien Lau, Executive Director – Commercial, Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Ltd (Hactl)

Air cargo has seized the limelight during the crisis as operators look to capture a share of an essential revenue stream. Demand in Asia is up more than 7% over the past two years while capacity has plummeted 30%. This capacity crisis has triggered an innovative array of makeshift conversions with boxes on aircraft seats or seats removed completely to make space for extra freight. This session will explore the cargo phenomenon. How long will cargo in the cabin last and what are the longer term cargo business opportunities for airlines, airports, handlers and suppliers plotting a business strategy beyond the coronavirus crisis?

10:30 - 11:15

Pharma: How Asian stakeholders are stepping up to deliver Covid vaccines

Brett Marshall, Corporate Head of Quality Assurance, Zuellig Pharma

Terence Yong, Regional Cargo Development Director, APAC, dnata

GHI will profile case studies from airlines, handlers, airports and suppliers on how they are working collaboratively to ensure crucial vaccine delivery in the region. What best practice lessons can we share around the deployment of technology, shipment tracking, GSE solutions and staff expertise that can help us better protect vaccine batches against damage or delay?

11:20 - 12:00

Legal: Legal and operational risks arising from the resumption of flights

Peter Coles, Partner, Clyde & Co

Does the unplanned grounding of fleets and mass furloughing of ground handling employees put us on a hazardous path for the restart? This session will investigate how prolonged storage of aircraft in areas exposed to wind, rain, sandstorms and heat could heighten the threat of ground damage during turnaround activities. Will mechanical wear and tear be compounded by errors from inexperienced ground crews under pressure to restore operations at speed? What are the legal issues this creates?

12:00 - 14:30

Virtual One-to-One Meetings

14:00 - 14:40

Sustainability: Seizing the moment for more environmentally friendly operations

Deon van Niekerk, Transformation, Integration & Operational Performance Director, APAC, dnata

Gerald Ng, Director, Environment and Sustainability, Regulatory and Economic Affairs, Changi Airport Group

Jason Watson, Managing Director, APAC, TCR

Public scrutiny is on our industry not to return to the top of the emissions league once passenger traffic resumes. But are we ready for the challenge? This session will explore greener technologies including electrification of the apron, sustainably powered GSE and reducing emissions through slicker operational practices. Which operators are leading the way with embracing sustainability and how do we turn greener practices into a key business advantage rather than a ‘tick box’, compliance-based activity?

14:45 - 15:30

Interactive Workshop: Legal and operational risks post Covid Q&A

Alastair Long, Senior Associate, Clyde & Co

Peter Coles, Partner, Clyde & Co

Delegates will have an exclusive opportunity to raise their legal queries around restarting operations with top aviation lawyers at Clyde & Co. The session will follow on from Peter’s morning presentation on some potential legal pitfalls post pandemic and invite operators to put air their concerns for expert guidance.

15:30 - 19:00

Virtual One-to-One Meetings