AirBridgeCargo Airlines (ABC) will take two more freighters into its fleet this year – and has said it is considering a further two.
Speaking to Cargo Facts’ European editor Alex Lennane, ABC’s Executive President Denis Ilin said that one 747-400ERF, formerly operated by KLM/Martinair Cargo (35233), was completing test flights in Amsterdam in early January in anticipation of delivery to the airline in February. He added that he expected a 747-8F to be delivered in September. “But that is the minimum. We might be more aggressive, and could do two more airframes. We do see the business for that – it’s more our own operational requirements that prevent us. We want to be 100% certain that we can perform so we tend to be very conservative on that front.”
The carrier plans to increase its footprint in North America this year, and will start a service to Los Angeles, probably during the summer, via either Atlanta or Chicago.
Ilin also noted that ABC was in an opportunistic mood and constantly surveying the market to spot any gaps. As a result, he said, the carrier was eyeing Helsinki, where national carrier Finnair is moving out of long haul freighter operations. Amsterdam, where Martinair is decreasing operations, would continue to be a key gateway, he added, while the airline had increased operations at Charles de Gaulle in Paris, home of Air France.