Freighter aircraft transactions through April 2018

GECAS took redelivery from Boeing of the first-ever freighter-converted 737-800. Launch operator West Atlantic will put it into service in a European express network.

Every week in Cargo Facts Update, we include a list of recent freighter aircraft transactions, and then a comprehensive summary in the monthly issue of Cargo Facts. Each reference to a freighter aircraft transaction (FAT) in our publications contains a unique FAT code linked to the FAT database on the CargoFacts.com website. This database is available to subscribers as an interactive tool on our website, and you can go to it from the “FAT Data” tab at the top of the home page, or directly at https://cargofacts.com/fat/

Below, we include the transactions from recent issues of Cargo Facts Update, and we encourage you to make use of the FAT database here on our website.

The first 737-800 freighter. Boeing redelivered the first ever freighter-converted 737-800BCF (32740, ex-SpiceJet) to launch customer GECAS in a ceremony held in the UK at East Midlands Airport (EMA) – the base from which launch operator West Atlantic will put the freighter into service [FATs 004365 – 4366]. West Atlantic has three more 737-800BCFs on order with GECAS, and says it has a contract to operate all four in a European express network.

Through its two subsidiary carriers (UK-based Atlantic Airlines and Sweden-based West Atlantic Sweden), West Atlantic operates three 767-200Fs, six 737-300Fs, eleven 737-400Fs, fourteen ATPFs, and two CRJ200Fs. The company is also expected to take delivery soon of a twelfth 737-400SF (25429, currently in conversion by AEI) on lease from Vx Capital Partners.

Boeing booked an order for three 767-300Fs from an unidentified customer [FATs 004367 – 4369].

UPS put a 767 into conversion. UPS ferried a 767-300ER (33845, ex-Japan Airlines) to Taipei (TPE) for conversion to BCF freighter configuration by Boeing at the EGAC facility [FAT 004370].

Two more 767-300s in conversion for ATSG

  • Air Transport Services Group acquired a 767-300ER (25196, ex-American Airlines) and will have it converted to freighter configuration by Bedek Aviation Group [FATs 004371 – 4372].
  • Air Transport Services Group acquired a 767-300ER (26915, ex-Air New Zealand) and will have it converted to freighter configuration by Bedek Aviation Group [FAT 004386 – 4387].

DHL Express took redelivery of a 757-200PCF (32397, ex-American Airlines) following conversion to freighter configuration by Precision Aircraft Solutions at the Flightstar facility in Jacksonville (VQQ) [FAT 004373].

SF Airlines took redelivery of 757-200PCF. (29425, ex-American Airlines) following conversion to freighter configuration by Precision Aircraft Solutions at the Flightstar facility in Jacksonville (VQQ) [FAT 004374].

A second 757 freighter for Pacific Air Express. Australia-based Pacific Air Express bought a 757-200PCF (22211) from Aerolease [FAT 004375]. Like the company’s existing 757-200PCF, this one was formerly operated by DHL International Aviation Middle East.

Vallair picks up a six-pack of A321s. Not quite as cheap, nor as easy to carry, as a six-pack of beer, but Luxembourg-based lessor Vallair confirmed that it had picked up a six-pack of A321-200 aircraft. And, rather than storing them in the refrigerator, Vallair will put five of them on short-term leases with a variety of passenger carriers, until they are inducted for conversion to freighter configuration by 321 Precision Conversions and EFW.

Vallair is the launch customer for two A321 passenger-to-freighter conversion programs – one offered by 321 Precision (one firm order, but more expected to follow) the other by EFW (ten firm orders). One of the six A321-200s (891, ex-flyCAA) was acquired by Vallair from AerCap in August 2017, and is already in conversion by 321 Precision Conversions (a joint venture of Precision Aircraft Solutions and Air Transport Services Group) at Orlando Sanford International (SFB), with certification and redelivery planned for some time in 2019 [FATs 4044 – 4045].

The other five aircraft are:

  • 677: Currently leased to Congo Kinshasa-based Compagnie Africaine d’Aviation CAA (flyCAA) [FAT 004381].
  • 827: Will be leased to flyCAA, but is currently in maintenance at Montpelier Méditerranée (MPL) [FAT 004382].
  • 835: Currently leased to Turkey-based Onur Air [FAT 004383].
  • 968: Will be leased to Onur Air, but is currently in maintenance at Châteauroux (CHR) [FAT 004384].
  • 974: Currently leased to Onur Air [FAT 004385].

None of the companies involved has made any announcement of the timing of the conversions of these five aircraft, although, at the Singapore Air Show in February, Vallair said it expected EFW to induct its first A321 in the fourth quarter of 2018, with redelivery planned by the end of 2019.

Modern Logistics converts a QC to full freighter. Last month, Brazil-based Modern Logistics agreed to lease a 737-300 from Automatic. The aircraft (24219) was in Quick Change configuration at the time, but has since been converted to full freighter configuration by PEMCO World Air Services at the Coopesa facility in San Jose Costa Rica (SJU), and will join the Modern Logistics fleet shortly [FATs 004388 – 4390]. This will bring Modern’s fleet to four units – two 737-400Fs and two 737-300Fs.

Previously unreported: China-based YTO Express Airlines took redelivery of two 737-300Fs in the second half of 2017. We did not report the redeliveries at the time, but to bring the record up to date we show them here.

  • YTO Express Airlines took redelivery of a 737-300F (29407, ex-China Southern Airlines) following conversion to freighter configuration by PEMCO at the GAMECO facility in Guangzhou [FAT 004391].
  • YTO Express Airlines took redelivery of a 737-300F (27520, ex-China Southern Airlines) following conversion to freighter configuration by PEMCO at the STAECO facility in Jinan [FAT 004392].

YTO’s fleet now includes eight freighters – one 757-200PCF and seven 737-300Fs. The carrier has one more 757-200 and one more 737-300 currently in or awaiting conversion.

UK-based Jota Aviation acquired a third BAe 146-300QT (3168) from ASL Airlines Spain [FAT 004376]. Jota is expected to take a fourth (3186) in the near future, as ASL winds down the operation of its Spanish subsidiary carrier.

TSM takes redelivery of a CRJ200F, puts another into conversion. Mexico-based Aeronaves TSM took redelivery of its second CRJ200F (7356, ex-Air Uganda) following conversion to freighter configuration by Aeronautical Engineers, Inc [FAT 004377]. TSM has a third CRJ200 (7341, ex-Air Wisconsin) in conversion by AEI, with redelivery scheduled for late June, and recently acquired a fourth (7300, ex-ExpressJet Airlines), which will enter conversion by AEI in June [FATs 004378 – 4379].

Italy-based Mistral Air added an ATR 72-200F (411). The freighter will be operated on an ACMI basis by Switzerland-based Zimex Aviation, for Poste Italiane (Italy’s postal service, which is the majority owner of Mistral Air) [FAT 004380].

  Like This Post