Six Star Alliance member carriers appoints Menzies Aviation as new ground handler at London Heathrow


FRANKFURT, Germany – Through a joint tender, six Star Alliance member carriers at London Heathrow have selected Menzies Aviation as their new ground handling company, in advance of their move to Terminal 1.

Starting October 1, 2009, Austrian, Croatia Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, SWISS and TAP will transition their handling requirements to Menzies from their current providers, a process to be completed by early 2009. Services awarded to Menzies include airport check-in, ticketing, special services and select ramp provisioning.

“Joint tendering has allowed us to negotiate much better terms for our carriers,” said Lee Hock Lye, vice president, Products & Services, Star Alliance. “We expect savings of at least one million euros a year for the participating members.”

“Our business is all about ensuring that our airline customers are able to deliver their passengers and baggage to their destinations safely, securely and on time. We are delighted to have gained the confidence of Star Alliance at this key hub. We will be able to make a real difference and deliver to them a truly world-class handling product, and in so doing, ensure that their passengers enjoy a unique travel experience,” said Craig Smyth, president & managing director, Menzies Aviation.

Joint tendering is not an entirely new concept for Star Alliance. For instance, contracts have been awarded at seven other European airports, saving members over six million euros a year.

“Purchasing ground handling services as individual carriers can be expensive and is a key factor in the profitability of airport operations. In these markets, the carriers have found that by tendering together and moving operations under one roof, it has not only improved the cost situation but actually been beneficial for resources, frequencies and improved customer service and quality,” continued Lee Hock Lye.

This latest ground handling agreement in London was prompted by the alliance’s Move under one Roof project at Terminal 1. Seven member carriers currently operate from Terminal 1, with another five scheduled to move later this year.