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Professional ULD management for Kazakhstan’s Flag Carrier: Air Astana signs outsourcing contract with Jettainer

(PresseBox) (Raunheim, ) Air Astana, the rapidly expanding flag carrier of Kazakhstan, has signed a five-year ULD (Unit Load Device) outsourcing contract with Jettainer. According to the agreement, Jettainer will take care of Air Astana's entire ULD requirements effective April 1, 2007.

With an expanding fleet of modern aircraft and award winning service Air Astana is recognized as one of the most successful new airlines in central Asia. It operates Boeing 757/767 and Airbus A320 family aircraft alongside Fokker 50s on flights to Europe, Asia and within Kazakhstan. As the biggest CIS country besides Russia, Kazakhstan requires a capable airline to connect its growing economy to international markets. Air Astana provides reliable, high quality transportation for passengers and cargo and therefore plays an important role for the country's prospering oil, mining and banking sectors.

The recent launch of B767 and A321 operations coincides with Air Astana's introduction of ULDs. While for many carriers around the world ULD management is a major, often problematic legacy, Air Astana is able to outsource this non-core activity to Jettainer as a competent partner from the very beginning, thereby avoiding any need to invest in mobile assets, technology and human resources while retaining a flexible cost basis.

Jettainer is a joint venture of international airfreight carrier Lufthansa Cargo AG and mobile asset management specialist TrenStar Inc. The company offers one-stop ULD management services that enable airlines to reduce costs and improve operational performance by outsourcing their ULDs into the expert hands and large, global fleet of a specialist ULD management company.

Outsourcing ULD management to Jettainer offers the airline a maximum of flexibility and immediate access to ULD management experience, professional resources, best practices and shared operational synergies with other airlines. "In line with our business strategy to strengthen our status as Central Asia's leading international carrier, we focus on Air Astana's two key goals: the expansion of our fleet and network, and the continual improvement of service to our customers", Oliver Mathwich, Air Astana Ground Handling, explains. "The ongoing modernisation of our aircraft fleet is part of this strategy - just as the decision to rely on Jettainer for giving the Airline the right mix of services and technology to support our operations", Mathwich says.

Jettainer will handle the airline's entire ULD operations for a monthly fee covering ULD supply chain management services including active stock management, repair and maintenance, tracking and tracing, management reporting and other fleet administration services. In addition, Air Astana will benefit from the use of "Jettware", Jettainer's suite of latest information technology applications.

"It is a most rewarding experience to work with Air Astana", Jettainer Managing Director Dr. Mohammed Ali Seiraffi says: "A unique airline in many ways, Air Astana is operating to highest international standards and is already profitable, despite competition from much larger, established airlines on certain routes". According to Seiraffi, Air Astana's selection of Jettainer as the preferred single source supplier for all its ULD requirements underlines the value proposition offered by outsourced ULD management. "We appreciate Air Astana's decision to outsource ULD management from the very beginning and are pleased to be chosen as their partner", Seiraffi concludes.

Air Astana is a joint venture between the Government of Kazakhstan and the British defense and aerospace company BAE Systems, with 51 % owned by the Kazakh government and 49 % by BAE Systems. Flight safety and high quality passenger service are the airline's main principles of operation. Air Astana was registered in 2001 and began flight operations in May 2002. Its main operating base is Almaty but with a secondary hub at the new capital of Astana. In the years since its foundation, Air Astana has increased its fleet to 18 aircraft now serving 25 domestic and 17 international destinations and employs more than 2000 staff members. The airline is a full member of the IATA (International Association of Air Transport) and is the only airline in Kazakhstan which is EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) JAR-145 certified to perform aircraft maintenance. On the Net:

Jettainer GmbH

Jettainer GmbH is the leading international service provider for outsourced ULD management. Established as a joint venture in 2003, the company operates the largest outsourced ULD fleet in the world from 500 stations worldwide. Jettainer offers airline clients higher availability of ULDs, economies of scale and scope gained from combining fleets and leveraged expert resources, reduced costs and less required working capital. It also affords customers the ability to concentrate on their core competencies. Present customers include Lufthansa, US Airways, Swiss International Airlines and Air One. The primary shareholders of Jettainer are mobile asset management company TrenStar Inc, headquartered in Denver, Colorado, and Lufthansa Cargo, one of the world’s largest international airfreight carriers, based in Frankfurt, Germany. Jettainer is headquartered in Raunheim, Germany. On the Net: