Swissport named best global ground handler and set to expand to India

Zurich/London/Mumbai, March 5th, 2003 - Swissport has been named "Global Ground Handling Company of the Year" for 2003 by the Institute of Transport Management - the third time in succession it has earned this prestigious award. The company has also expanded its operations to India, concluding a multi-year cooperation agreement for Mumbai and Delhi with the reputed Cambata company.

The 2003 "Global Ground Handling Company of the Year" award from the London-based Institute of Transport Management is based on a survey of several hundred companies in the aviation sector. The poll, which was conducted by an independent market research organisation, asked respondents to name the best companies in various business sectors. "Swissport has been especially successful in a fiercely-contested and consolidating market environment, and that's something that more and more airlines and airports are coming increasingly to appreciate," explained Patrick Sheedy, PR Director and Chairman of the Aviation Committee, announcing the award. The distinction marks a ‘hat-trick' for Swissport: the global ground handler has picked up the same prestigious honour for the past two years.

Cambata and Swissport to collaborate in India

Swissport continues to implement its strategy of consistent growth through selective expansion, and has now extended its operations to the high-potential Indian market in partnership with Cambata Aviation Pvt. Limited. Cambata, which was founded in 1959, is one of the biggest and best-known ground handlers in India, and handled some 8 000 flights of 18 airlines at its Mumbai and Delhi stations last year.

Swissport aims to use the new partnership to establish itself as a global provider on the Indian market, developing both partners' position in India and representing Cambata all over the world. "Developing our activities in the Asian market has a high priority for both our company and our airline customers," says Joseph In Albon, President & CEO of Swissport International. "So we're very interested in further possibilities of collaborating with high-quality companies in the region."

Swissport International Ltd. (which is majority-owned by Candover Partners Ltd., a leading European buyout specialist based in London) cares for over 60 million passengers a year at more than 150 airports in 28 countries, and handles over 2.5 million tonnes of cargo annually for more than 600 customers. With a total workforce of more than 18 000 personnel, Swissport is active on four continents, and expects to post consolidated operating revenue of some CHF 1.1 billion for 2002.