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Air BP, Poland oil company form joint venture

Air BP signed an agreement with a Poland-based oil company to form a new joint venture to manage the supply, logistics and marketing of aviation fuel in Poland, the country with the fastest growing aviation fuel sales in Europe.

The new joint venture with Grupa Lotos is called Lotos-Air BP Polska.

"Air BP's strategy is to grow our business through superior customer offers, partnerships and advantaged supply infrastructure,” David Gilmour, chief executive of Air BP, said. “Through our new joint venture with Grupa Lotos, we are delivering this strategy in Poland. We will leverage Air BP's global customer relationships and technical operations experience, as well as Lotos' local expertise and supply capability, to establish and significantly grow our presence in Poland."

Air BP is forming Lotos-Air BP Polska by buying 50 percent of Lotos Tank, the wholly owned aviation subsidiary of Grupa Lotos. This will make BP and Lotos equal shareholders in the company.

Air BP expects the deal to be completed in the next six to eight weeks, subject to competition authority approval.

"We will now be able to provide our commercial airline customers with aviation fuel through our joint venture when they fly to Poland,” Alex Junge, leader of the North-Central Europe performance unit at Air BP, said. “And we will expand our general aviation network by enabling customers to use their Air BP Sterling card at all the new joint venture locations. It's a great example of our strategy in action and shows that business growth opportunities do exist in Europe."

Grupa Lotos has a refinery in Gdansk, Poland and is the largest aviation fuel manufacturer in the country. Lotos Tank has licenses to operate at Gdansk, Warsaw and Krakow airports and also supplies bulk fuel to Wroclaw and Rzeszow airports.

There will be no change to Lotos' existing on-airfield operations and supply agreements as a result of the new joint venture. The only change will be to the name of the company.

As part of the joint venture forming, it is looking to fill the position of managing director for operations.

From left to right: Alexander Junge (Performance Unit Leader Northern & Central Europe), Bogdan Kucharski (Head of Country, BP Poland), Pawel Olechnowicz (CEO, Grupa Lotos) and Maciej Szozda, (Vice President of the Management Board & Chief Commercial Officer, Grupa Lotos)