AeroLogic Ups Their Fleet

Freight carrier AeroLogic, a DHL Express / Lufthansa Cargo joint venture (50/50 percent), grows its transport capacity by adding two Boeing 777 freighters to its fleet of currently eight Triple Seven all-cargo aircraft. Both newcomers belong to lessor GECAS and flew formerly under the LATAM Cargo flag.

The capacity of AeroLogic’s two additional Boeing 777 freighters will be utilized exclusively by DHL Express  -  picture: hs
The capacity of AeroLogic’s two additional Boeing 777 freighters will be utilized exclusively by DHL Express - picture: hs

Since its launching flight back in the summer of 2009, AeroLogic (IATA code 3S) operates a fleet of eight Leipzig-Halle Airport-based Boeing 777Fs, serving intercontinental routes. On weekdays 1 to 5 the aircraft are utilized by DHL, on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays they serve Lufthansa Cargo routes.

Now however, eight long years after 3S took to the air, the fleet will be expanded – for the very first time. The forthcoming upping of the transport capacity is the result of a productive triangular relationship: Carrier LATAM Cargo decided to downsize its B777 freighter fleet while conversely AeroLogic was eager to grow its capacity. A perfect match of interests, enabled by lessor GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) as third participant, who owns the LATAM operated freighters.

The outcome of the accord is quickly told: “This August we will already welcome our ninth Boeing 777F freighter in Leipzig. In future, this aircraft will fly across the globe under the registration number D-AALI,” states Josef Moser, Managing Director of Aerologic GmbH.

Exclusive use by DHL Express
The second former LATAM Triple Seven is expected to join AeroLogic’s fleet in October, just in time for this year’s peak season.
In contrast to the carrier’s existing business model, that’s based on a capacity sharing agreement between DHL and Lufthansa Cargo as mentioned above, freighters number 9 and 10 will fly exclusively on behalf of DHL Express from weekdays one to seven.
This amendment of the operational conditions “is not a strategic realignment and surely not a change of the nature of AeroLogic’s business model,” assures Daniel McGrawth, responsible for external communications at Deutsche Post-DHL. Obviously, DHL Express needs additional capacity more urgently than AeroLogic shareholder LH Cargo, leading to the aforementioned solution. “Both Triple Sevens will operate within DHL’s existing network, increasing the capacity according to requirements,” says Dan. A clear statement ending any speculations that DHL Express might open up new routes once the two freighters have joined AeroLogic’s fleet.    

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Additional jobs at LEJ
The increase in equipment is also good news for Leipzig-Halle Airport, where the 3S freighter fleet is based. AeroLogic’s management speaks of 60 new jobs that will be created, predominantly for cockpit personnel. The shareholder’s green light for growing the main deck capacity “impressively underlines Aerologic’s position as a future-proof and attractive employer in the heart of Germany,” adds Wolfgang Raebiger, who in combination with Jo Moser acts as Managing Director of Aerologic GmbH.

LH Cargo replaces MD-11Fs by B777Fs on two South America routes
In parallel with AeroLogic’s fleet news, Lufthansa Cargo announces changes of aircraft within their Latin American network as of September 7th. Beginning then, two of the carrier’s five weekly flights from Frankfurt to Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina will be operated by AeroLogic Boeing 777Fs. The Triple Sevens will replace LH Cargo’s own MD-11F on weekend flights to/from South America. The remaining three services across the South Atlantic on weekdays 1, 2 and 3 will continue being flown with the airline’s proven workhorse MD-11F, including a fuel stop in Dakar on their way south and back north.

Heiner Siegmund 

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