The ground-handling business saw its share of mergers and acquisitions in 2015, and now the trend continues this year with Worldwide Flight Services’ (WFS) announcement that it has reached an agreement to acquire Consolidated Aviation Services. A purchase price and terms were not yet disclosed.
Consolidated Aviation Services, headquartered in New York City, serves more than 250 airlines. WFS is present at over 145 major airports in more than 22 countries on five continents. It serves 300 airlines all around the world, and handles more than 4 million tonnes of cargo each year.
After WFS was acquired last spring by Los-Angeles based Platinum Equity, Olivier Bijaoui, the executive chairman, president and CEO of WFS, said at the time that he planned to acquire other smaller ground-handling firms. In November 2015, airport operator Fraport sold 51 percent of Fraport Cargo Services at Frankfurt Airport to WFS. FCS handles about a half-million tonnes of cargo every year for approximately 40 airlines.
“I know Mike Duffy, president and CEO of CAS, and the CAS team well, have worked with many of them before, and have a great deal of respect for what they have accomplished,” Bijaoui said. Bastian Lueken, head of Platinum Equity’s European investment team, said with this move the company is delivering on its promise to support the profitable growth of WFS by “pursuing complementary, accretive” businesses.
The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions.