Pontifications: 8-year old A330-300 converted to freighter, reflects weak market

By Scott Hamilton

Sept. 20, 2021, © Leeham News: An 8-year-old Airbus A330-300 was converted recently from passenger to freighter configuration by EFW.

Actually, says EFW’s Wolfgang Schmid, the airplane is not quite eight. It is the youngest A333 to be converted.

I can’t remember an airplane of any type this young being converted from passenger to freighter. The market value of an eight-year-old aircraft is way too high. Operating economics are well within airline requirements at this age. Aircraft historically become conversion candidates no sooner than 15 years of age and more commonly not before 20.

Conversion illustrates current market demand

There have been rare cases of younger aircraft going to the scrapyard. The Airbus A318 and more recently the A380 are two examples in which aircraft around 12 years old have no secondary market.

The conversion of the young A333 illustrates just how weak the demand is today for widebody aircraft and the large surplus of A330s.

EFW has orders for more than 100 P2F conversions for the A330-200 and -300. The orders are heavily weighted toward the -300. ST Aerospace and Airbus own EFW with a 55%-45% shareholding split.

There are conversion lines in Germany, Singapore and China. A line will be opened next year in Mobile (AL), where Airbus has final assembly lines for the A320 and A220. Mobile was also where Airbus intended to open an FAL for the A330/KC-45 US Air Force refueling tanker had it won the contract. Airbus and Lockheed Martin (LMT) partnered to bid on the USAF’s new KC-Y contract, expected to be awarded in 2023. LMT is the lead in this bid and hasn’t selected an FAL site.

Production rate

EFW will deliver 13 A330Fs in 2022, 23 the following year and 30 in each of 2024 and 2025. The production line is full through 2025.

EFW is also the top-producing conversion company for A321s. 321 Conversions, a joint venture between Precision Aircraft Solutions and cargo airplane lessor ATSG, is the other operating company in production. There are one or two others developing conversion programs.

Four A321s have been converted by EFW. Six will be delivered this year, 21 next year, and 28, 29 and 31 through 2025. EFW also is converting the first of three A320s being converted for one customer.


Burning questions for aviation geeks
  • How did the Airbus A340 become an also-ran airplane?
  • Why did Boeing pass on acquiring the Bombardier C Series?
  • McDonnell Douglas tried to hire John Leahy from Airbus.
  • Which Boeing Commercial Airplanes CEO said Boeing would have been money ahead to pay Leahy $10m a year to go sit in the corner?
  • Read about these and more in Air Wars, The Global Combat Between Airbus and Boeing, available here.

 

 

 

95 Comments on “Pontifications: 8-year old A330-300 converted to freighter, reflects weak market

  1. The glut of second-hand widebodies is only going to increase in the short term as certain flag carriers re-structure. We recently had LATAM’s fleet restructuring, and now Garuda is dumping all its 777s (10) and A330 ceos (17); it’s also cancelling 13 orders for A330neos.
    Next up: Malaysia, Thai, Cathay, Qantas(?).

    More headwinds for the 777X.

    https://www.scramble.nl/civil-news/garuda-2022-fleet-plan#:~:text=Looking%20at%20the%20table%2C%20Garuda%20is%20set%20to,its%20seven%20A330-200s%20and%20ten%20of%20its%20A330-300s.

      • Indeed…thanks for adding Jet to my list.
        With second-hand WB pricing at these levels, someone is bound to have plans for a longhaul LCC, with very low fleet capital expenditure. There’s a huge potential point-to-point LCC market between Europe and Asia.

          • @ Frank
            Things change. For the first time, airlines can now acquire whole fleets of widebodies at rock-bottom prices. That low initial outlay translates into lower debt servicing costs, and thus potentially higher margins even on low seat prices.
            Air Asia X was planning on expanding its longhaul network before the pandemic came along.
            Aer Lingus is — in a way — already a “budget” longhaul/widebody carrier, and they were making a success of that before the pandemic.

          • “For the first time, airlines can now acquire whole fleets of widebodies at rock-bottom prices.”

            prices are rock bottom because nobody wants to do that. 😉

          • @Frank

            I don’t think low aircraft prices will matter either. The video’s conclusion that long haul LCCs work by creating demand has nothing to do with LCC; any airline could fly their suggested route types and make money.

            The reason long haul LCCs aren’t successful like short haul LCCs is because in short haul the LCCs were flying direct between cities while the network carriers only offered flights through their hubs. The direct flights were often no longer than a single leg of the network carriers connection flights, so there was a built in 50% reduction in flying time. The reduction in passenger time was even greater as the wait for the next flight was often as long as the flight itself.

            When flights go from hundreds of miles to thousands, collecting people into a hub only modestly increases flight and passenger time so there is little built in advantage for direct flying. Level of competition, not cost structure, is the driver.

          • @Bryce

            Eastern Airlines announced just 2 weeks ago that it has secured the acquisition of 35 second-hand B777s for conversion to freighters.

            ‘conversion to freighters’ is the key, in this statement. They are not flying warm bodies, with them.

            Flying self loading freight (pax) in an LCC model is quite different from flying cargo. Air freight business is only growing nowadays while long haul is stagnating.

            To ship a 40 foot cargo container from China to where I am used to cost about $5k (pre-covid). That price has skyrocketed to $17k. It’s a knock on effect where every mode of shipping has gotten more expensive – hence the jump into the freighter business.

            https://www.bbc.com/news/business-58643717

            Record backlog of cargo ships at California ports

            “Retailers and manufacturers have rushed to place orders and restock their inventories, but the global shipping system is struggling to keep up.

            It’s contributed to shortages of children’s toys, timber, new clothes and pet food, while also pushing up consumer prices.”

  2. And in line with the content of this article:
    “Jet-Leasing Godfather Udvar-Hazy Warns Boeing, Airbus Over Glut”

    “Accelerating build rates too quickly could result in surpluses that damage aircraft values, making such a move “one of the biggest dangers” facing the aviation sector, the Air Lease Corp. founder and chairman said Monday at an Airline Economics conference in London.

    “Overproduction is not something that’s good for the airline industry, because it’s going to drag down residual values, it’s going to result in surpluses that the airline industry cannot really afford,” he said.”

    https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/jet-leasing-godfather-udvar-hazy-warns-boeing-airbus-over-glut-1.1654701

    • @Bryce

      Thanks for links

      Good to see that the market, as represented by the freighter conversions and the Udvar-Hazy quotes, are not as rosy eyed as BA ‘ market predictions’

      • Lessors, including Hazy, have said that after every global crisis: 9/11, SARS, the Great Recession and this. Nothing new here.

        • Scott;
          Why hasnt anyone looked into A380 P2F conversion…is it too big even for a booming cargo market?

        • As much as I admire Hazy, he also was the one who first dissed the A330 Rev 4 and then turned around and became a cheerleader for the same A330NEO claiming 1000 orders.

          I always ball parked a the A330NEO at 250 orders at the low and under 500 at the high and felt more like 300 was possible.

          I could be the worlds best baseball player and bat .450 with a golden glove- that does not make me worth listening to in any other area (and yes I expect the usual sarcastic remarks).

          • “that does not make me worth listening to in any other area”

            Useful that you realize that yourself, so that others don’t have to point it out to you 😏

          • When you live with your shortcomings for over 60 years, you either look at them as ways to improve, or you ignore them and stay the same.

            I was extremely successful in all my endeavors (skill wise, most were not the patch to fame, glory and riches).

            I learned far more from the mistakes I made and admitted than any success (that only meant I knew what I was doing).

            Granted, admitting you are wrong can be painful and or embarrassing etc. Or you can embrace it as a road to improvement and become better than you are.

            If more had that introspection it would be a far better world.

          • The whole forum would benefit if you’d limit comments to aviation rather than giving an autobiography 😏

            Coming back to your original comment: the number of 777X orders is lower than the number of A330neo orders…did you “predict” that too?

          • If Scott is offended I would suggest you let him deal with me as you are not the owner of the blog.

            But in the same vein, staying on on topic would be a good idea as well

            Please note that no fingers are being pointed at any individual, and of course its up to Scott to enforce it.

        • @Scott Hamilton

          Do you mean to say, also, that they, U-H and the others, are wrong this time?

          Does the pace of freighter conversions align with their point of view, or not?

          • @Gerrard

            WB Medium haul market would not fully recover before 2024 or later as per AB. Ergo BA’s Middle of the Market jet goes up in smoke.

            Lessors have to make lemonade with lemon to bridge the gap until market recovers.

            It’s more like a blip in longer term but won’t stop Nostradamus 2021 predicting the end of the world or the sky is falling etc.

          • @Gerrard: What I mean to say is that the lessors always speak from their special interest (which is only natural). Too many airplanes produced compete with the supply and demand, driving lease rates and residuals down. Same story every industry downturn. When the industry recovers, so do lease rates and residuals.

            I have no opinion on the freighter question.

          • @Pedro

            I’m not sure about the ‘blip’ in the longer term

            The current crisis is still spreading fast, developing unpredictable variants (the sub stupidity)

            Not the end of the world, but maybe yes Skyfall for BA

        • @Scott Hamilton

          People normally do speak from their special interests

          Yet to retain credibility and so to retain standing and influence over markets and clients these people must get it right most of the time, never stray too far

          BA’s predictions are far too blissful – are aimed at gullible stock purchasers and to aid WS in market manipulation, rather than to give any credible forecast for their clients, I’m sorry it should be made clear that BA clients are airlines not speculators

          Who they know to be cannier and cunnigner than they, so need none of their prediction

  3. What impact will a321neo have on transatlantic travel and any where else where it can replace wide body on shorter “long haul” trip. A321neo and 787 can eat quite a bit of other wide body trips. Mass long haul traffic hasn’t come back to warrant bigger wide body. What if netjet, Flexjet and like start operating ultra long range Global 7500 for high end bizz clients? Its a big IF but they are having a boom right now. As airliners remove destination and reduce frequency another market opens up for bizz jet. Qatar has a bizz jet segment. Lol Emirates can have fleet of Global and take the high end customers.

    • That really gets down into the range and pax carry.

      As the 757 did it there clearly is some routes for it. But to reach a lot of places they have to drop pax numbers despite a very impressive full passenger capability.

      I believe I red the MAX-10 actually has better range but not the passengers.

      How much of the Business Jet market is driven by Covd?

      And equally how long that is a factor with unknowns galore.

      • @TW

        I believe I red the MAX-10 actually has better range but not the passengers.

        757

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_757#Specifications

        200 – 3915NM/7250KM & 239 pax max
        300 – 3400NM/6295KM & 295 pax max

        737 Max

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_737_MAX#Specifications

        10 – 3300NM/6110KM & 230 pax max with one ACT

        for comparison

        A321Neo

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbus_A320neo_family#Specifications

        A321Neo – 3650NM/6760KM & 244 pax max
        A321LR – 4000NM/7400KM & 206 pax max
        A321XLR – 4700NM/8700KM

        • Airbus’s own website give the standard A321neo a range of 3400nmi. This is down on the 3500nmi they were claiming a few months ago. on the same home page. Presumably the new cabins with extra passengers lead to that reduction. I’ve travelled the 3375nmi from Sydney to Manilla in a Philipines Airlines A321neo set up for 180 passengers so I’m sure its possible to do practical routes of 3650nmi in the 165 PAX configuration TAP uses. The range of the B737-10 is variable with load as well but I’m sure it will do well against the A321neo but obviously Boeing have no capability matching the LR and XLR.

          JetBlue is running 7 x A321LR service per week between New York and London. I think 24 min business class direct aisle access seats and 108 economy of which most are 32 inch pitch and 24 are genuine 35 inch pitch. If you do the calcs 1/2 the JetBlue Cabin by length must be business class. I think they’re no doing this due to payload considerations but because they can fill that many business seats easily. With 1 or 2 aircraft JetBlue is offering 7 services/week to London.

          • If memory serves, Alaska Airlines recently tried to get the A321Neo from Airbus, instead of the Max 10 – for the same price.

            AB said no thanks, the 10 isn’t able to do what our Neo can do.

            I guess you get what you pay for…

      • @Scott

        Isn’t dyslexia reversing things? In this case it would be A330-003.

        I’m thinking it’s just too much coffee, a little finger tremor and you hit the ‘3’ one too many times…

        F

  4. The conversion of a relatively new A330 to F would indicated to me that Airbus is not going to see the replacement surge for A330CEO they had been expecting to boost the sales of the A330NEO.

    Some of the CEO of course converted (shockin as an 8 year odl aircraft having that done to it) but certainly not anywhere near the majority so you have lots of excess and newer A330 that won’t get retired by replacement aka sales of the NEO

    • And then there is the interesting possibility of LM offering USED A330 (with GE engines) as a tanker vs all new and hugely costly build in the US.

      Plenty of precedent with Australia going that roue as well as Spain.

      I don’t know if procurement policy would allow it of course.

      But GE engines and the conversion work done in the US would be plenty of US content and benefit.

      • Posted below that it wouldn’t surprise me if the next tanker competition was arranged to ensure an Airbus victory. The Aukus mess has cost the US it’s most powerful ally. (considering the EU as effectively a single entity) It’ll need something like that to rebuild the alliances.

        • @Martin A

          It’s a kind thought, but the Admin is throwing more hissy fits than even Trump could summon – plus everyone giggling about a 2050 delivery date, most of all China

          Although Biden backpedalled over N2 – this looks like a bridge too far

          Besides the French are far better at hissy – this thingey is an ideal out for EU vis à vis US/NATO disastrous Russia China policies

      • Sam1:

        I think those would be different markets (or routes).

        The A350F is likely to be 100 ton area.

        As a barometer, I have watched UPS use 767 on Intentional routes (through Anchorage AK) , its something of a filler for the 747/MD-11 (roughly 1/3 of the flights but it varies day to0 day quite a bit)

        UPS puts winglets on their 767s so they benefit from that improvement in fuel use even if they don’t use it all the time.

        FedEx does not have winglets on their 767s, they are really regional Freighter Use (regional is defined as US area, Europe, Asia) not the regional passenger market.

        So an A330-CEO-F might supplement a heavy route at times but you try to move the biggest lump in a single flight on a bigger aircraft is possible.

        Mostly I would guess its like the 767 other use internationally on routes that don’t have the heavy freight quantity (thinner routes)

        Of like the 787 passenger, develop a route and if it grows then put a heavier aircraft on it.

        A30F competition most direct would be the 777CEO conversions and possibly the 777X-F.

    • The CAAV (the “they” above) evidently haven’t yet taken stock of China’s reaction to the AUKUS announcement…

      • France’s reaction has been far worse so far. French ambassadors recalled from US and Australia. It is feared France may avenge its feelings by excluding Australia from an EU-Australia free trade deal which will be a hard hit given Australia’s trade problems with China. It’s notable that the AUKUS agreement also did not include New Zealand a country Australia is traditionally extremely close to.

        So peripherally this will effect air freight between EU and Australia and China and Australia.

        The Cancellation of the 12 French Barracuda subs comes as a result of the non performance of the French contractor as much as anything else.

        Ministers of the current Government and the opposition recollect the similar severe cost, time and performance over runs in the previous Collins class of Swedish design. Australian defences simply can not possibly afford two extremely over budget, late under performing, expensive to operate submarines in a row. Such cost over runs may be inevitable given the complexity of the program and unfortunately the French sub contract was in part to fill the failings left by the previous Swedish one (not so long ago) and if it can’t do that its a serious matter .

        France does not want to jeopardise its relations with China for the sake of trade hence I think it was left out of AUKUS. New Zealand has a woke anti nuclear pacifist prime minster.

        I doubt it will effect Airbus sales as those wings still come from the UK.

        • @William

          NZ has always enjoyed an odd man out status when it comes to foreign boats, the French have good reason to remember

          The Aus have managed the extraordinary feat of angering yet amusing China, EU, and the agog rest of us

          To put today’s trade deal with EU so stupidly in doubt, in favour a trade deal with ….er the UK, and some un needed subs which doubtlessly will be controlled by US and not enter service until 2040 (that’s a typo for 2050)

          They should have held off until China had cooled down, and the EU signed the trade deal

          But no Scotty and Tony have an election in 2022 – so…..

        • @William

          ‘France does not want to jeopardise its relations with China for the sake of trade ‘

          It’s the EU, not just France – and it’s a question of strategy or strategic relations, not ‘merely’ trade: EU, especially Germany, needs strong and close CAI – inward investments, a party capable of guaranteeing relations with Russia

          • @Bryce

            France’s reaction has been worse than who’s (dixit W) – is the reaction of any other country as relevant as that of the ‘wounded’ party?

            Hence hissy

            After hissy comes international relations, duly primed and prepared by hissy perhaps – but that’s simply a negotiating tactic

            It’s not France’s reaction which is to be dealt with – it is the reaction of the EU with regard to

            1- trade deal with Aus
            2-war deal with Nato
            3-trade deal with China -the subact can only encourage more CAI

            Biden’s dud deal must be seen as first and foremost a challenge to the EU- misguided it is true and certain to backfire

            You’re write, enough said – why indeed incur the wrath of Scott by breaking his contract with us or is it our’s with him – heaven forfend should he go nuclear

        • @ William
          I don’t know if France’s reaction has been “worse” so far…I’d only go as far as to say that it’s been “more public” so far.
          I think we can be sure that, behind the scenes, the Chinese are looking at their chessboard from every angle and pondering an optimal response. MAX re-cert and BA orders will be on the list.

          Once again: the incident itself is relatively insignificant — it’s the underlying attitude revealed by the incident that is causing all the repercussions: snubbed allies, ignored international NNP treaties, forgotten trade dependencies, “inadvertent” arms races…the list is impressive.

          And now: although the point raised by MartinA was interesting, we should drop this subject so as not to incur The Wrath of Scott.

          • I was been ironical but I think its going to get more tense. The Australian prime minster may have told the truth but he was rash and insensitive because surely he should have known what his statements would trigger.. In any case here we are. AUKUS may even explain the sudden withdrawal from the quagmire of Afghanistan. Over 40% of the worlds GDP is now in Asia.. A big area of business.

          • @Bryce

            I have no idea why this off-topic subject was raised other than as a bait for others to shut down the comments.

        • “New Zealand has a woke anti nuclear pacifist prime minster.”

          NZ has a long and well documented no-nukes policy going back at least 40 years.

          also, you use those terms as if they were somehow bad:

          Woke – socially conscious and respectful of cultures other than “white christian male”

          anti-nuclear – as we have seen over and over, nuclear weapons and nuclear power are both very expensive and when something goes wrong, it goes wrong big

          pacifist – in favor of peace over war.

          yeah, not seeing the negative here.

        • You got last of it but missed France cancelling defence talks with the UK & certain spillover into UK attempts to rewrite/avoid parts of the Brexit agreement.

        • Forgot to add, given Australia’s insistence on such high specs I was always sceptical that the requirement could be met with a conventional submarine. More on subject, though, EU-UK relations will be worrying Airbus.

          • “EU-UK relations will be worrying Airbus.”

            This subject is certainly very relevant and ON-topic as far as the future market is concerned.
            Apart from the fact that it’s bad business practice / risk management to be predominantly dependent on just one external supplier for something, this situation becomes even worse when the supplier unmasks itself as an opportunistic trickster who can’t stick to a deal. Airbus already uses its Bremen facility to kit-out “naked” wings coming in from the UK — it’s time that those naked wings themselves were also made in the EU. The writing is on the wall — Airbus needs to sit up and pay attention!

          • @Bryce

            Almost hilarious to watch Johnson wants Britain to join “North America”!

            Truth is stranger than fiction – fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.

        • South East Asians are alarmed by this secretive nuclear sub deal, heightening a nuclear arms race in their region by “foreigners”.

          Proof that some countries have no idea how to respect others. Harris’ recent so called South East Asia trip only stopped at two countries, why? How about the countries left out??

          The current administration is criticized for treating Europeans as if it were the 90s. Even worst, the latest secretive military alliance proves that some might have a mentality of the 1970s.

  5. It’s a chartered flight flew into a regional airport that rarely services such aircraft type.

    It’s been mentioned the need of tail stand for the B737-900, so either the ground crew was not familiar or the stand wasn’t available at the airport.

    • It can be managed with careful unloading of passengers and baggage.

      Mentour pilot did a good U tube on it.

      Someone is supposed to keep an eye on the nose strut and stop activity when it starts to extend. They screwed up as they would know what shore support was.

      Freighters are different in that you don’t have the load or unload options necessarily and you need to tether or stand support those all the time.

  6. B747s (incl. 747-200F and 747-400F) face lengthy inspection by Oct or being grounded??

  7. AB continues to pile pressure on BA: showed concept of new wing version of the A321 to Plueger

  8. On a slightly divergent topic, but freighter related, what’s the odds that the US is forced to buy A330 tankers to replace the rest of the tanker fleet in order to maintain EU cooperation on China following the AUKUS mess? Might even be able to build the airframes in Europe after this.

    • Hubris and stubbornness will probably impede such a scenario. After all, although old alliances have been damaged, Boeing is on its knees and needs a lifeline…no matter how sub-standard its tanker offering is.

    • What European cooperation? What did Europe stand up for? The mayor of Prague stood up certainly, maybe minor parties in the EU parliament. Is Europe going to sail a carrier task force into the area to indicate a capability willingness to protect Taiwan and several other nations in the region? Did they speak up during pro democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong. Europe is interested in trade relations and will not damage them although they well see this as high minded reproachment.

      • Perhaps Europe feels that “sailing carrier task forces” through the area is not the solution…that’s a possibility, isn’t it? After all, Europe cautioned against the second invasion of Iraq and was ignored/jeered at the time; instead, “carrier task forces” were let loose, a whole region was de-stabilized, and the rise of IS was precipitated. Europe also cautioned against abandoning Afghanistan and was again ignored…and we all know what happened next.

        • @Bryce

          Please no more war talk – talking people down off the ledge is a hopeless task

      • “Did they speak up during pro democracy demonstrations in Hong Kong. ”

        Don’t stand with those throwing sh*t at armed people.
        The “Democracy” movement in Hong Kong is a US orchestrated operation. same vein as Ukraine and Belarus.

        Why should Europe get involved in another private war of the US? Afghanistan was expensive and completely missed the express purpose of intervention.

  9. I’m curious as to whether an new build A330neo Freighter might be offered. The A330neo itself will make an excellent P2F conversion in the future. I expect offering either 17.5% more range or about the same in extra payload over the ceo models and likely with a reasonable ‘transatlantic range’ which should be about 4200nmi for the A330-900 P2F and 4450nmi for the A330-800 P2F. (using the 3600/3800nmi range of the ceo freighter as a basis)

  10. A little off-topic, but fascinating — and it does, at least, relate to fleet strategy. The relationship between Ryanair and Boeing really seems to have gone down the toilet:

    “Ryanair on Tuesday warned that Boeing risked forgoing the main driver of growth in Europe, low-cost airlines, to rival Airbus unless it reversed a recent price increase.

    Europe’s largest low cost carrier earlier this month abruptly ended talks with the U.S. planemaker over a new order of the larger 737 MAX 10 jets, worth tens of billions of dollars, due to differences over price.

    Ryanair Group Chief Executive Michael O’Leary said that “Europe’s low cost carriers will drive demand for Airbus A320 family aircraft and not Boeing” unless it cuts its prices and does a deal with Ryanair.”

    https://uk.finance.yahoo.com/news/ryanair-says-boeing-risks-ceding-115115240.html

    • Proof that MOL is desperate and the B737 MAX 200 is not as competitive as competitors’ Airbus!

  11. This post is not about the EU, France, NZ, submarines or MAX 200s. Get back on topic.

    Hamilton

    • Hey – let’s talk about covid, vaccination rates, mask mandates and medical subjects!!! 🙂

        • @Scott Hamilton

          From what I know of today life in EUUS people love to talk about the bug the vx the war maybe on the horizon

          It’s so to say- ‘the new normal’

          Going back to 2019 seems unlikely

  12. At some point the 767 feedstock for freighter conversion will dry up. Will it be worthwhile for Boeing to try to sell new examples, or will the A330 in either of its sizes become the new de fact standard for carriers not wishing or able to buy new? The 777P2F seems rather large for most, but will conversion of 787s provide a smaller alternative?

    • Frank:

      I don’t think that there is any realistic limit for 767 feed stock.

      1000 were made (and counting) – freighters come in the hundreds at best.

      787 looks to be a hard one to convert though I suspect they will figure it out someday, not soon.

      It may be that an A330-300F fills a slot that the 767F or the 777x/A350F do not.

  13. I’d be wary of a ‘dotcom bust’ scenario – many many people starting conversion lines up, is there enough business for all of them?

    Some may be part of an existing heavy maintenance operation so have a chance.
    Some are multi-site operations – Israel company for example.
    Locating to get low labour cost often a factory (but takes special leadership).
    Heavy maintenance facilities were not always successful – the one at PDX for example, had a good technical leader in Terry Nord but negligible customer interest so folded.

    We’ll see what the long term brings in price of conversion candidates and need for fuel economy for airline operations thus newer airplanes. In near term, I gather freight business is booming for various reasons including delays at ports and shortage of trucks/drivers.

  14. There is a difference between the “market value” and the “distressed value”. The latter is more relevant today.

  15. A350F update:

    “With e-commerce booming, Airbus formally began marketing a proposed freight variant of its A350 passenger jet in July, taking aim at Boeing’s tight grip on the global cargo market.

    “We are in a number of very encouraging discussions,” chief commercial officer Christian Scherer told reporters in Toulouse, where the European plane maker is based.

    “It is available for sale and is selling,” he added.”

    https://www.straitstimes.com/business/companies-markets/airbus-in-talks-on-sales-of-a350-freighter

    Very interestingly, in the same article:
    “Among other European prospects, British Airways parent IAG has reopened a fresh competition between Airbus and Boeing for narrow-body jets, revisiting a large provisional order for 200 Max jets that was never finalised, the sources said.”

    • @Bryce

      Yah, I think we all knew that the Willie Walsh MOU for 200 Max’s, while it was still grounded, was a smoke and mirrors ‘solid’ that he did for BA to give them a boost when they were in the dumps.

      The aircraft just didn’t fit with their fleet. I guess they’ll run to Airbus with a piece of paper saying, “look how cheap we can get a 737 Max!”

  16. new or younger than 8 years old 737-300 ( 14 aircraft if I remember well) were converted from passenger to freighter in the first half of nineties by PEMCO in Alabama. Poor quality and bad support made this french post office costly initiative a difficult operational entry into service. May be a unique event in the cargo industry ?
    Scott: Anyway Thanks for your wonderful site

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