Air Transport Services Group, Inc. (ATSG), the world’s largest lessor of freighter aircraft, has committed to a total of 29 Airbus A330 Passenger-to-Freighter (P2F) conversion slots with Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW), center of excellence for Airbus freighter conversions and a joint venture between ST Engineering and Airbus.
The commitment of 29 A330P2F reflects a strategic step by ATSG to diversify its existing in-service fleet of 117 aircraft with the addition of next generation wide-body freighters.
“The A330-300 passenger-to-freighter conversion is a natural next step for ATSG as it is an excellent complement to the Boeing 767-300 medium wide-body freighter, which has long been the freighter of choice for the e-commerce air cargo market,” stated Mike Berger, chief commercial officer of ATSG.
“The availability of feedstock combined with impressive cargo capacity make the A330 a very attractive option for conversion and will enable ATSG to continue to meet the demands for full-capacity freighters long into the future.
“The customer response to the news that we will have A330-300 freighters available for lease has been exceptionally strong, and we already have customer deposits toward future leases for half of these 29 converted freighters.”
“To have a key market player like ATSG adopting the A330P2F programme with such a high commitment is a major milestone for us,” said Andreas Sperl, CEO of EFW.
“This is a great sign of confidence in next-generation Airbus freighters and trust in EFW’s competency as a centre of excellence for Airbus freighter conversions.”
The A330P2F conversions for ATSG will be performed from mid-2023 through 2027 mainly at EFW’s facility in Dresden, Germany, and also at ST Engineering’s conversion sites in China.
Multiple conversions will be carried out in parallel.
Similar to the latest conversion programmes, A321P2F and A320P2F, the A330P2F programme is a collaboration between ST Engineering, Airbus and EFW, which is leading the overall programme as well as marketing & sales efforts.
To meet the rising demand for freighter conversions, ST Engineering and EFW are setting up new conversion sites in China and the U.S. this year, and are ramping up conversion capacity for all their Airbus P2F programmes to about 60 slots per year by 2024.