Groundforce Expands Its Activity

After just starting its operations in Bilbao and Seville airports, Groundforce has just signed ten new handling contracts in Spain. Similarly, in Portugal, Groundforce has gained a new client, the airline UM Air - Ukrainian-Mediterranean Airlines.

Groundforce's activity in the Bilbao-Loiu airport began on the 15th of November last, with the company starting its operation in San Pablo airport in Seville on the following day, the 16th of November. These are two of the seven airports where Groundforce has obtained licences to provide ground handling services following the tenders launched by AENA in Spanish airports.

In both airports, these services were previously provided by Globalia Handling, through the licence held by Iberhandling. From now on, it is Groundforce's responsibility to continue to provide all of the services previously offered, which includes the handling of Baggage, Ramp, Cargo and Postal services and aircraft de-icing services. Besides this, it will also provide Passenger services, which has been liberalised and therefore not included in tenders.

As a result of its starting to operate in these airports Groundforce gained ten new contracts in Spain, signed by the following airlines: Air Europa, Air Plus Comet, Blue Line, Easyjet, Farnair, Hi Fly, Lagunair, Portugália, Swiftair and Trade Air. These contracts are valid for the airports at Bilbao, Seville and, in some cases, for both, for periods which go from three to seven years, and include cargo, ramp or full handling services.

Groundforce also increased its portfolio of clients in Portugal with the contract signed recently by the airline UM Air - Ukrainian-Mediterranean Airlines. Valid from October 2006 to December 2009, this contract includes the provision of full handling services by Groundforce Portugal at the airports of Lisbon, Porto, Faro, Funchal and Porto Santo.

Winning these new clients reflects the quality of the services provided by Groundforce and which is recognised by these clients. An example of this is the "Overseas Most Improved Base 2006" prize which was recently awarded to Groundforce Morocco by the airline First Choice Airways, in recognition of the professionalism and services it provides at Agadir airport.

Groundforce is the 6th largest independent handling operator in the world. In the countries where it operates, Groundforce provides full ground handling services (passengers, ramp and cargo) to more than 400 clients.