Freighter lessor ATSG: outlook is bright

07 / 11 / 2017

US-based aircraft lessor ATSG, provider of Boeing 767 freighters for Amazon's Prime Air cargo airline, saw its revenue increase by 31% to $254.1m year-on-year in the third quarter of 2017.

Joe Hete, president and chief executive, said the results “reflect growth in our operating fleet and strong double-digit growth in associated lease revenues. We expect to deploy five more freighters to lease customers by year-end, and increase operating utilisation for our CMI and ACMI fleets during a good peak season.”

As at September 30, 2017, ATSG’s Cargo Aircraft Management (CAM) segment owned 74 Boeing cargo aircraft, of which 66 were in service and  eight  were awaiting or undergoing modification from passenger to freighter configuration.

CAM expects to close on purchases of five additional B767s in the fourth quarter of 2017 and will have eight B767s in cargo conversion by the end of this year; they are all expected to be in service by the end of the third quarter of 2018.

Furthermore, CAM expects to deliver three more B767s and two B737s during the fourth quarter of this year, including the first of three B767-300 freighters for Northern Aviation Services and a B767-300 each to Amerijet and Cargojet.

"Our outlook for peak season and early 2018 remains bright, as we continue to grow our portfolio of leased freighters, including our first two Boeing 737s," Hete said

"From September 30 this year through 2018, we will place at least 11 more Boeing 767 freighters in service, nine of which are committed to customers at this time,” he added, noting that increasing activity in the air express industry, driven by e-commerce, is a contributing factor in ATSG’s growth.

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