WFS, Worldwide Flight Services will acquire a 51% stake in FCS, Fraport Cargo Services as a part of their strategical partnership with Frankfurt Airport. This investment is underlining the continuous strategy of WFS to expand in Europeans major cargo markets.

Fraport will retain a 49% share and will maintain to continue an important role in the management of the company. The terms of the transaction have not been communicated so far and is scheduled to be finalized by the end of September 2015.

Since 40 years, FCS has been the largest provider of independent cargo handling services at Frankfurt Airport, Europe’s joint largest cargo airport alongside Paris CDG. In 2014, cargo and mail traffic through Frankfurt rose 1.8% to some 2.1 million tons. FCS employs more than 600 cargo handling professionals at its modern freight centers in the airport’s Cargo City South and provides services to most of the world’s leading air carriers.

Executive Chairman, President & CEO of WFS, Olivier Bijaoui, , stated : “This is a major transaction that positions WFS and FCS as the leading cargo handler at one of the biggest cargo airports in the world. As Europe’s largest economy, Germany is obviously a prime focus in our growth plans. We could not ask for a stronger partner than Fraport, with whom we share a passion for quality and performance and likewise who have demonstrated a commitment to the cargo handling industry over more than 40 years.”

Dr. Stefan Schulte, Fraport AG executive board chairman said: “As in the past, the cargo business continues to be vitally important for our business model. To continue developing our cargo handling business successfully, it has been our wish to find a strong and competent partner that offers a strong international network. Thus, we are pleased today to announce this new strategic partnership with such a renowned international partner like WFS, to gain an even broader globally- linked base for successfully developing FCS further in the future.”

Founded back in 1971, WFS is the world’s largest cargo handler and a leading global provider of ground handling and technical services with annual revenues of €700 million. It employs 14,000 staff and is present at over 145 major airports in more than 22 countries on five continents, serving 50 million passengers and handling over four million tons of cargo per annum for 300 airline customers.

Last May, WFS announced plans to accelerate its growth by exploring more business opportunities and implementing its acquisition strategy. And, in June, WFS confirmed the biggest expansion of its ground handling activities in Europe in over 40 years after being awarded full ground handling licenses to operate at Spain’s Madrid, Seville, Santiago, Oviedo and Vitoria airports.