On July 10, a 737-300 (27710, ex-Southwest) was ferried from storage in Victorville (VCV) to Tampa (TPA). PEMCO Conversions confirmed to Cargo Facts that this aircraft is due to be inducted for conversion into freighter configuration at its TPA facility, and that the customer will be Ireland-based Rostrum Leasing.
PEMCO said that unit 27710 will be redelivered ninety days after induction, which will happen next week [FAT 005045]. This will be the fourth 737-300 to be converted by PEMCO for Rostrum this year, after units 27713, 28398 and 28401 (all ex-Southwest). Unit 27713 was also converted at PEMCO’s TPA facility and redelivered earlier this month [FAT 005044]. Meanwhile, units 28398 and 28401 are both at the Taikoo (Shandong) Aircraft Engineering Co., Ltd. (STAECO) facility in Jinan (TNA), with 28401 showing as available from April and 27713 from August on Rostrum’s website.
PEMCO added that Rostrum has an option for four additional 737-300 conversions. Based on ch-aviation data, Rostrum appears to have a number of ex-Southwest 737-300s in storage at VCV. Given that the 737-300F is still relatively popular in Asia and Latin America, Cargo Facts wouldn’t be surprised if Rostrum does indeed firm up those options. Another issue at play is the ongoing grounding of the 737 MAX, which could have short-term repercussions on 737 NG feedstock.