Aero Capital and SmartLynx partner for A321 freighter conversions
13 / 10 / 2022
A321F. Photo: SmartLynx Airlines
Aero Capital Solutions (ACS) has launched an Airbus A321 freighter conversion programme in partnership with SmartLynx Airlines, starting with four aircraft.
ACS, a mid-life narrowbody aircraft and engine lessor, said that the A321 expansion will complement its current 40-aircraft B737-800SF P2F programme.
The first four A321s of the joint programme have already been initiated through sale lease-back between the parties.
ACS will act as a lessor and financier. ACMI, cargo, and charter provider SmartLynx – an experienced A321 freighter provider – will operate the aircraft after conversion completion.
Upon delivery of the four freighters, the SmartLynx A321F fleet will reach up to 15 units.
The cargo operator’s intended freighter fleet growth aligns with ACS’ expanding freighter fleet.
SmartLynx chief executive Zygimantas Surintas said: “ACS and SmartLynx have a long-established relationship surrounding passenger aircraft, and we’re excited to continue to work together as we expand our market-leading A321F capacity and work towards the fleet modernisation.
“The aircraft are highly efficient with lower operating cost and fuel burn advantage in comparison to the legacy aircraft, such as the B757, making them substantially more environmentally friendly.
“ACS’s unique mix of hands-on mid-life aircraft expertise, freighter conversion knowledge, and engine support is an excellent fit for SmartLynx.”
Jason Barany, chief executive and founder of ACS, added: “We are eager to break into the A321 market with SmartLynx being our kick-off customer. We deeply value our relationship with SmartLynx and we look forward to helping them grow their A321 freighter fleet.”
ACS entered the freighter market in 2020 with four B737-800SF freighter conversions from Aeronautical Engineers, Inc. (AEI).
In June this year it continued the expansion of its cargo aircraft fleet through the conversion of six B737-800 aircraft.