The contract, worth up to £4M over 7 years involves Rushlift supplying Virgin with a new fleet of ground support equipment, used mainly in aircraft maintenance both in the hangar and on stand at Heathrow Airport. The agreement will be extended to cover Virgin operations at Gatwick airport. Rushlift will provide full maintenance cover including an immediate response if equipment fails and prevents an aircraft from departing.
The winning of this contract complements Rushlift’s recent acquisition of the American Airlines maintenance facility at Heathrow, giving them the ability to respond to airside emergencies.
Speaking about the new contract, Peter Cosgrove, Chairman and co-founder of Rushlift, said: “We are entering a new and exciting phase of our development. Ground support equipment is vital to the safe and efficient running of an airline.”
“We are delighted that such a prestigious company as Virgin, renowned for its customer service, has put its faith in our service offering and we are looking forward to working closely with them. We are investing over £2M to replace equipment and help Virgin meet its own targets on improving the sustainability of its business and significantly reducing carbon emissions. This involves replacing old diesel engined equipment with either low emission diesel equipment or electric vehicles.”
Andy Currey, Tooling and GSE Manager at Virgin Atlantic Airways commented on the tendering process for the contract:
“Rushlift was the only company that really understood our needs and were able to fully comply with the tender requirements. We were impressed by their Fleet Management System which will give us real time information on the status of our fleet and helps us to use our equipment more effectively. They have been easy to deal with throughout the process, responsive to our requests and flexible in their approach.”
Virgin Atlantic operates a fleet of 41 aircraft on long haul flights and has recently inaugurated domestic services to Manchester, Edinburgh and Aberdeen. They fly to 35 destinations globally.
Rushlift is a national company operating 150 engineers from a network of six depots. It provides long and short term hire of mechanical equipment and maintenance services, with over 8,000 items of equipment in service, ranging from materials handling equipment, ground support equipment to lorry loader cranes.
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