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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Monday, 06.07.2020, 11:39

Estonia: Magnetic MRO acquires 4 Boeing 737 aircraft from Air Baltic

BC, Tallinn, 05.02.2020.Print version
Magnetic MRO, a Tallinn-based aircraft technical care and asset management company belonging to Hangxin group of China, has acquired four Boeing 737 Classic aircraft from Latvian carrier Air Baltic by means of a public tender, informed company.

Following delivery from the Latvian flag carrier and maintenance checks and customization works, all aircraft continue their service in the fleets of new owners, Magnetic MRO informed the stock exchange on Wednesday.

As of December 2019, airBaltic operated a fleet of 36 aircraft, including 21 Airbus A220, 12 Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 NextGen, and four Boeing 737 CL. The decision to sell the Boeing 737 CL aircraft was a pre-planned move by Air Baltic in order to focus on its new Airbus 220 fleet which delivers higher fuel efficiency and reduces the carbon footprint.

"In June 2019, we were awarded an option to acquire four Boeing 737s. Some of these aircraft have a long maintenance history at our MRO base in Tallinn. It's delighting to witness the expansion of our cooperation beyond conventional MRO business -- not only we keep aircraft airworthy, but also commit to take the ownership of the very same assets and help airlines to manage their exit risks," Risto Maeots, CEO of Magnetic MRO, said.

"Thus, we are grateful to our Latvian partners for entrusting these aircraft in our hands. After maintenance checks and customization works had been completed, the aircraft have been placed into the hands of new operators," Maeots said.

Martin Gauss, the CEO of airBaltic, said that Boeing 737 Classics used to be a notable part of the airBaltic fleet for more than 10 years.

"They served as our breakthrough, helping to establish ourselves as a strong regional carrier. Now we are modernizing our fleet and relying on Airbus A220 as our future aircraft that will enable us to improve efficiency and better connect Baltics to the world," he said.

In January, Magnetic MRO extended their base maintenance service agreement with Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) until 2023 and launched a leasing arm called Magnetic Leasing that expects to have a portfolio worth half a billion US dollars by 2025.

Magnetic MRO raised its revenue by 64.5% year on year to 26.7 mln euros in the third quarter of 2019 while its net profit grew from 403,000 euros to 2 mln euros.

airBaltic carried 5.049 mln passengers in 2019, 22.1% more than in 2018. The Latvian carrier serves over 70 destinations from Riga, Tallinn and Vilnius. The primary shareholder of airBaltic is the Latvian state, which holds 80.05% of the stock, while Lars Thuesen holds around 20%.

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