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Swissport awarded new licence with CGS to offer special assistance (PRM) services at Zurich Airport


Zurich – Swissport International, the world’s leading provider of ground services to the aviation sector, has won a new licence together with its partner Customer Ground Services AG (CGS) to offer special assistance services (PRM) at Zurich Airport. Swissport and CGS will be founding a new joint-venture subsidiary named “Careport” to provide the services concerned. Careport will begin operations with the start of the 2009/10 winter schedules, and will offer its services – on behalf of Zurich Airport - to all involved airlines.

The licence to provide the new special assistance or PRM (for “passengers with reduced mobility”) services at Zurich Airport was subject to international tender (in line with the new EU rules 1107/2006), and has now been awarded to joint-venture partners Swissport and CGS, who will commence their new operations at the end of October. These services are currently provided by the airport’s ground handling companies or the airlines themselves. The new licence has been awarded for a five-year period. The new Careport company will provide its services (on behalf of Zurich Airport) for all the airport’s airlines, and will commence operations with a workforce of some 180 personnel. Most of these will be recruited from Swissport and CGS, a move that will offer sizeable benefits by providing valuable continuity and experience in the special assistance field.

The corresponding formalities and employment contracts will be prepared in the next few weeks. In accordance with Article 333 of the Swiss Code of Obligations, all personnel transferring to Careport who are already active in the capacities envisaged will retain their current terms of employment for the first 12 months. The search for a CEO for the new company will also begin in the next few days. Swissport (as Careport’s majority shareholder) and CGS (as a major minority shareholder) will be working closely on all further preparations to commence operations, and will shortly be providing all the parties involved with full details of the actions and innovations planned.

“We’re delighted to have been awarded this special assistance services licence,” says Adrian Melliger, Senior Vice President and Head of Swissport Switzerland. “We see it as a confirmation of the high service standards that Swissport has established in this field, and we’re looking forward to continuing to provide these top-quality services at Zurich Airport. I can also imagine that our new Careport company might extend its services and activities to further airports or market segments in the foreseeable future,” he adds.
Perry W. Jenning, President & CEO of CGS, is equally keen and confident. “I warmly welcome Unique Zurich Airport’s choice,” he says. “We also feel that this award reflects the quality and the professionalism of our services. And we now need to honour the trust that has been placed in us by continuing to provide all the airport’s airlines and their passengers with the best service product possible.”

Swissport International Ltd., which is owned by Ferrovial, a leading European infrastructure and service corporation based in Spain, provides ground services for over 70 million passengers and 3.5 million tonnes of cargo a year on behalf of some 650 client companies. With its workforce of around 33 000 personnel, Swissport is active at 178 airports in 40 countries on five continents, and generated consolidated operating revenue of CHF 1.9 billion (EUR 1.2 billion or USD 1.7 billion) last year. /


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