Zurich, Oct. 23, 2009 – Swissport International and its local venture partner Inter Airport Services, obtained the license to launch ground handling business activities in Costa Rica. The long-term agreement covers the two international airports: Juan Santa Maria in San Jose and Daniel Oduber in Liberia, and it is scheduled to commence Nov. 1, 2009.
Swissport along with its local partner Inter Airport Services (IAS), the local ground handler owned by the well established Central American Group Interexpresso, will start ground handling services at Juan Santa Maria International Airport (SJO) and Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR). The venture will commence effective Nov. 1, 2009. With this license Swissport and IAS will be able to offer ramp and passenger services including executive aviation, fueling and aircraft maintenance with a later possibilities of also expanding into the cargo handling sector, which for the time being, will continue to be managed independently by IAS’s parent company Interexpresso, an established cargo handler in Costa Rica, Panama, Guatemala and Nicaragua.
With an annual total of 3.8 million passengers, some 40,000 flights and more than 78,000 tons of cargo in 2008, the two airports are building an interesting market place for Swissport/IAS since they strongly believe in this growing area also due to the fact that the airports are planning various infrastructure expansions and improvements for the future.
Frank Mena, Swissport’s senior VP ground handling southern US, Latin America, Mexico & Caribbean, commented: “We are very excited to partner with a Costa Rican company that shares our same philosophy of providing consistent quality services to our customers. The entry into this key Central American market is just the first step and we are confident that together, Swissport and IAS, will continue to grow and expand throughout the region, becoming a formidable competitor in multiple Central American locations.”
Diego Ramírez, CEO of the Interexpresso Group, is equally excited and reports: “The combination of our local relationships and experiences fits perfectly well with Swissport’s global aviation knowledge and know-how. I have no doubt about the success of this new venture. All operating Airlines will be very pleased to see a new market option offering top quality services.”