YVR Cargo Spotlight: STEMCELL Technologies

Over the last several months, we have been very fortunate to begin regular correspondence with STEMCELL Technologies, a leading, local life science company that ships most of their end products by air. Advanced manufacturers like STEMCELL, which require a highly skilled workforce, play an important role in our region as they further diversify the local economy and support our business as they scale and grow.

For this month's Cargo Spotlight, we spoke to Carly Fryer (Manager, Global Logistics, STEMCELL Technologies) about STEMCELL's products as well as current logistics challenges and opportunities.

Tell us about your company and the products you offer.

STEMCELL Technologies is Canada’s largest biotechnology company. Founded in 1993, STEMCELL currently employs more than 1,400 individuals globally, with 1,000 employees located in Canada. Rooted in scientific expertise and rigour, STEMCELL provides high-quality cell culture media, cell separation technologies, instruments, accessory products, and educational resources to scientists around the world working in stem cell, immunology, cancer, regenerative medicine, and cellular therapy research. At STEMCELL, we are dedicated to improving lives through advanced knowledge and scientific discovery, through our commitment to fostering diversity and inclusion in STEM and the life sciences industry, and through our investments in sustainability, community, and social responsibility.

Why is air cargo capacity and infrastructure at YVR important to your business?

The majority of STEMCELL’s manufacturing takes place in Vancouver, Canada, from which products are shipped to STEMCELL facilities and customers in over 80 countries. Our vision is to have our products used in research labs around the world. To achieve this, we rely on frequent and timely flights from Vancouver and other locations to accommodate our high volume of temperature-sensitive global freight.

Where are your focus markets?

We have distribution centres in France, China, Singapore, and Australia to support our global markets. We regularly ship to these destinations as well as many others. To ensure our customers receive their desired products on time, we look to our freight partners to schedule regular, reliable international cargo flights.

What are some of the logistic challenges you are working on with YVR?

Since the COVID-19 pandemic started to impact countries around the world, airlines have needed to alter several flight schedules. Staying up-to-date on these changing schedules and being adaptable has been crucial to maintaining our global supply chain and replenishing our international distribution centres. Working with YVR has allowed us to proactively understand the ever-evolving flight schedule changes as well as to provide feedback.

What are the opportunities you are most excited about?

STEMCELL services 80 countries and our global presence is constantly expanding. The ability to ship from YVR to global hubs, and then onto more remote regions, is incredibly important to serving our customers and scientists around the world. YVR helps STEMCELL achieve our mission to advance the pursuit of scientific knowledge by supplying high quality, innovative reagents, tools and services that enable life science research.

We look forward to working with STEMCELL in the months ahead, connecting their products with key markets and looking at how, as we grow cargo and passenger flights (which also include cargo), we can increase their global links.