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Amazon operator ATSG to add A321 freighter conversions

BEAVERTON, OR/WILMINGTON, OH: August 07, 2017. Conversion specialist Precision Aircraft Solutions (PAS) and Air Transport Services Group (ATSG) have launched 321 Precision Conversions, a joint venture to convert A321-200 passenger aircraft to freighters beginning in 2019.

Last month PAS delivered its 29th B757 freighter conversion to DHL and the A321-200 PCF is expected to provide the same amount of volume at B737 freighter operating costs. Over 1,400 A321-200 passenger aircraft are currently in service.

Steven Thomas, president of Erickson Group that owns PAS said: "This strategic alliance with ATSG for the A321-200 program underscores our complementary business models and our long history of positive business dealings over the years. We look forward to bringing this product to the market together."

PrecisionIn 2007 PAS redelivered the first of four converted B757-200PCF freighters to ATSG subsidiary Cargo Aircraft Management and four years later developed, certified and produced a B757-200PCC Combi variant for the company.

ATSG president and CEO Joe Hete commented: "Expanding our fleet to include A321-200 freighters will supplement the shareholder value we create in the future. Our decade-long relationship with Precision for 757 conversions gives me confidence that we will bring to market another high-quality, cost-effective freighter and reliable asset to a customer segment that demands very high performance."

Precision Aircraft Solutions has converted passenger B757 aircraft into freighter and combi variants for SF Airlines, DHL, Air China Cargo and ATI.

In addition to CAM, ATSG subsidiaries include ABX Air, Air Transport International, and Airborne Maintenance and Engineering Services incorporating PEMCO World Air Services.

Today ATSG reported a net loss of US$43.7 million on revenue of US$491.1 million for the first six months of 2017 compared to net earnings of US$19.8 million on revenue of US$353.9 million for the same period last year.

Hete added: "I'm pleased to say that we are scheduled to deliver the twentieth leased B767 freighter to Amazon later this week, 17 months after we formalized our relationship in March 2016. Our total leased-aircraft portfolio has grown by eight B767s as of June 30, compared to the same date a year ago.

"Excluding the two 767-300s required to complete Amazon's twenty-aircraft order, our current purchase and conversion commitments will yield twelve additional B767-300s extending through the first half of next year."

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