June 29 - Atlas Air Worldwide is making various fleet update initiatives in response to market demand and customer requirements.
"We are seeing good demand for airfreight and for our aircraft and services," said William J. Flynn, president and chief executive officer of Atlas Air Worldwide.
"We have managed our fleet aggressively. We will utilise proceeds from our recent convertible note issuance to refinance higher cost debt, which will enable us to reduce aircraft ownership costs and increase fleet flexibility."
Based on the improved airfreight environment and customer demand, Atlas Air Worldwide has agreed to acquire a new 747-8 freighter from Boeing with delivery scheduled for November 2015. Prior to its expected placement in longer-term ACMI (aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance) service, the company intends to deploy the aircraft in charter operations.
To meet additional charter demand, Atlas Air Worldwide is also returning an owned and unencumbered 747-400 converted freighter to active service. The company has also entered into a short-term operating lease expected to begin this month for a second 747-400 converted freighter. This lease is intended to replace a similar aircraft, with a lease that expires this month, on terms that are more favourable to the company.
By year-end 2015, Atlas Air Worldwide's cargo operations are expected to include ten 747-8Fs and 23 747-400 freighters.