ASL Aviation Holdings (ASL) has signed a deal for 20 B737-800 Boeing Converted Freighters (BCF) comprised of 10 firm orders and 10 options.
“Having operated two leased 737-800BCFs across our wide European network, we are very pleased with how the flexibility and reliability of these freighters fullfill our operational needs in meeting our customer requirements,” says Hugh Flynn, chief executive, ASL Aviation Holdings.
“The aircraft is highly efficient and right-sized for our developing operations on behalf of our express cargo customers who are experiencing growing demand,” he says adding that the 737-800BCF will also give ASL access to new markets.
Operating on six continents, ASL provides network solutions to express freight integrators, transporting more than 357,000 tonnes of cargo in 2018.
“This order is a great testimonial of the unique capabilities of a 737-800 converted freighter, says Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales & Marketing for The Boeing Company. “ASL Aviation has seen firsthand how this platform is perfectly suited to fly express cargo on domestic and short haul routes. We are honoured that ASL Aviation is growing its business with the 737-800BCF.”
Mounir adds that with rising demand for the B737-800BCF, Boeing is looking to expand its conversion capacity.
Boeing recently inaugurated new conversion lines at Boeing Shanghai Aviation Services (BSAS) and Taikoo (Shandong) Aircraft Engineering Company (STAECO), while looking to expand further. The program is committed to more than double B737-800BCF output this year, going from eight conversions in 2018 to 17 in 2019.
Boeing predicts that 2,650 freighters will be delivered between 2018-2037, with more than 60 per cent of these deliveries comprised of passenger-to-freighter conversions.
Already operating on four continents (Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America) after entering service last year, the B737-800BCF is certified by various global regulators: The US Federal Aviation Administration, the European Aviation Safety Agency, the Civil Aviation Administration of China, and Russia’s Federal Air Transport Agency.
The B737-800BCF carries more payload – up to 23.9 tonnes – and flies farther – 2,000 nautical miles (3,750 km) compared to B737 Classic freighters. It also offers operators improved fuel efficiency, lower operating cost, and higher reliability than previous standard-body freighters, Boeing says.