IAI, Atitech Partner For European Cargo Conversion Site

The signing ceremony for the new Italy-based conversion site took place on July 5.
Credit: IAI/Atitech

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) will establish a passenger-to-freighter (PTF) conversion site for Boeing 737-700 and -800 aircraft at the Naples base of Italian MRO Atitech.

The new venture was announced Monday (July 5) by both parties, which cited the rise in cargo aircraft demand as a factor in growing the IAI network. 

Atitech’s role will include aircraft maintenance and renovation services, converting passenger aircraft to cargo configuration. In addition, it will provide training and support in licensing and registration for technicians. It will hold capacity to convert two aircraft in parallel. 

“Freighter conversions require huge investment, advanced technology, and skilled personnel, with high barriers to entry in the sector,” says Atitech president Gianni Lettieri. “Atitech, possessing all the above and the know-how to retrofit Boeing’s passenger aircraft, looks forward to building support and cooperation with IAI.”

The site will be IAI’s first in Europe, adding to two existing PTF locations in China and several joint ventures located across the world.

The company, which counts the likes of Amazon, DHL, Boeing and Lockheed Martin as clients, has been expanding its footprint so far in 2021. Earlier this year it announced plans to form a joint venture with Lithuania-based MRO Aviatic to establish an aircraft maintenance center at the Siauliai Airport in 2022. 

The new center will operate as Aviatic MRO and will primarily offer aircraft maintenance and overhaul services, the conversion of Boeing 737NG passenger aircraft into cargo configuration, and the training, certification and licensing of personnel.

James Pozzi

As Aviation Week's MRO Editor EMEA, James Pozzi covers the latest industry news from the European region and beyond. He also writes in-depth features on the commercial aftermarket for Inside MRO.