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            january 29, 2020

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Maximus near US$20 million sale of A300s to finance express start-up


The UAE's Maximus Air Cargo is a step closer to selling two of its A300Fs after it having talks with start-up Alpha Express Airlines, which acquired a 29-year-old A300 freighter from Georgian Start International in February this year.
The Latvian carrier confirmed that it was in talks with Maximus over two of its A300s, said to be the older aircraft in Maximus' five-strong fleet of the aircraft type, they were reportedly discounted to US$10 million each.
It's been reported that the Abu Dhabi-based carrier has struggled to consistently place all of its Airbus aircraft under ACMI contracts in a challenging market. Its main customer, Etihad, has increasingly opted for a range of aircraft from various suppliers, most recently taking on an Atlas Air 747-8F under ACMI.
Sources close to Maximus indicate that the airline has relied heavily on revenues from its Russian-built fleet of an AN-124 and Il-76s. The latest A300s to join the fleet in 2011 were heralded as the youngest-ever conversions of an A300, according to London's Loadstar.
If the sale does go through, it is likely to resolve a headache at Maximus, which has seen staff cuts in the past month. According to two sources, more than 15 people were let go from the company earlier this month, while the head of safety and ground operations also resigned suddenly.
A source at Alpha Express said the carrier was also in discussions over other A300s. "We will know more in June," he said.

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