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Release ID: 5108

MAXIMUS AIR CARGO EXPANDS FLEET

AED350 million investment in three new aircraft

Abu Dhabi, 19 January 2011 - Maximus Air Cargo, the UAE’s largest dedicated cargo aircraft operator, today announced a significant expansion to its fleet.

Three additional Airbus A300-600 regional freighters – each offering 48 tonnes of payload capacity – purchased from Japan Airlines (JAL) and representing a total investment of AED350 million – including conversion, will be introduced to the fleet in July, September and November this year.

The introduction of these aircraft, which brings the total number of aircraft operated by the company to eleven are currently undergoing conversion from passenger to cargo configuration by EADS EWS, a global centre of excellence for Airbus passenger-to-freighter conversions.

Maximus Air Cargo President and CEO Fathi Hilal Buhazza said the acquisition will not only strengthen Maximus Air Cargo’s regional leadership position in the air freight industry but also transform it into one of the biggest and most versatile operators of its kind.

“The arrival of these aircraft, which were built in 2000 and 2002 and are the youngest ever to be converted from passenger planes to freighters, comes at an exciting time in the company’s growth programme,” he said. “They will provide strategic support for our ambitious expansion plans which strengthens our positioning as the Middle East’s largest all cargo operator with opportunities to serve the Middle East North Africa (MENA), Asia and European regions.

“Furthermore the high utility and high efficiency of this aircraft will help open the next exciting chapter of our development by further facilitating the dual business model of cargo charter and ACMI lease solutions, and will strengthen our organisational readiness for the future,” he added.

Buhazza also reported that the company’s performance continues to be robust with growth and profit margins set to exceed targets, despite the continuing tough economic conditions.

“Due to our steady and constant operations we realized a 16% growth in 2010 over the previous year with a turnover of AED 430 million this year. As a result of this stability we are able to make this major investment. Maximus Air Cargo has gone from strength to strength since its inception in 2005 and there is still more to achieve.

“With the addition of these new cargo aircraft and more destinations, we can now offer cargo agents and freight forwarders a wider choice of cities for their shipments.”

Andreas Sperl, President and CEO of EADS EFW said he was pleased to see Maximus Air Cargo enlarge the Airbus portion of its freighter fleet.

“Having opted again for the popular A300 wide-body freighter, Maximus Air Cargo will be best prepared to meet its growing airfreight demands. Seeing a current operator of our converted freighters recontracting EADS EFW for further P2F conversions, is the best possible indication of the product’s capability and performance,” he said.

Maximus Air Cargo is a part of the ADA Group established in 2005, chaired by HH Sheikh Tahnoon Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and includes Royal Jet, the international luxury executive flight services company and Abu Dhabi Aviation, the largest commercial helicopter and fixed wing aircraft operator in the Middle East.

Maximus has rapidly grown to be a key player providing end to end solutions for a multitude of sectors. Specialising in outsized, humanitarian, equestrian and VIP cargo solutions and wet leasing aircraft, its expertise is diverse and it currently operates a varied fleet of eight aircraft, delivering impeccable safety and security standards backed by an expert team.

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