The Moscow-based freight carrier keeps on enlarging and renewing its fleet. In Seattle, they received their 10th Boeing 747-8F out of a total order of 20 units. The aircraft is scheduled to arrive at its new home base Sheremetyevo Airport (SVO) at 23:30 UTC tonight.
Tatyana Arslanova, VP Strategic Management and Charter Cargo Operations at Volga-Dnepr Group, cuts the red ribbon to mark the handover of the new 747-8F to ABC, joined by Sergey Lazarev, General Director of ABC (center), and Alexey Isaykin, V-D Group President - courtesy V-D
The handover ceremony at the U.S. plane manufacturer’s production plant at Everett, Washington State also kicked off the twice-weekly 747-8F flights taking from Seattle to Moscow via Chicago and
Europe. Hence, local Tacoma International Airport (SEA) becomes the Russian freight carrier’s sixth online destination in North America.
Due to the new delivery, ABC’s 747 freighter fleet consisting both of -400Fs and -8Fs which has grown to 16 units with more to come. However, each time a further 747-8Fs is handed over, the freight carrier announced to retire one of their remaining 747-400Fs.
Isaykin praises Boeing partnership
On the occasion of the handover ceremony, Alexey Isaykin, President of the Volga-Dnepr Group, the parent company of ABC, pointed out explicitly that the growing fleet of 747-8Fs in combination with the new Seattle services is more than just of strategic importance. “It allows our Group to successfully compete in the global air freight market and fulfill its obligations under the long-term logistics support program agreement with Boeing and its partners for the transportation of aerospace items.”
The deal he speaks of was sealed by both enterprises last July at the Farnborough Air Show in Hampshire, UK. The long-term agreement covers the provision of logistics services by the Volga-Dnepr Group to Boeing and its partners using V-D’s and ABC’s combined fleets of AN-124-100 and Boeing 747 freighters.
While Boeing’s Bentrott applauds the V-D Group
Volga-Dnepr owner Isaykin is heading ABC on an interim basis until a successor is nominated to replace former ABC Chief Denis Ilin, who exited ABC on 31st July this year.
Boeing’s VP Sales for Russia, Middle East and Central Asia, Marty Bentrott, assured that his firm intends to support and maintain the strategic partnership with the V-D Group, “which combines the strengths of our companies and our unique experience of developing joint solutions in the interests of aerospace industry customers. For us, Volga-Dnepr Group is not just a customer, it is a reliable partner with a proven track record demonstrated over our many years of cooperation.”