dnata announced expansion of its European footprint through the planned acquisition of Germany-based Wisskirchen Handling Services (Wisskirchen). Subject to government approval, dnata’s entry into the German market will further develop its position as a leading global cargo services provider.
Wisskirchen is the exclusive operator of the Cologne Bonn Cargo Centre, a 12,000 sqm facility at Cologne/Bonn Airport (‘CGN’) providing a full range of cargo services via a team of some 180 highly-trained employees. Wisskirchen handles more than 85,000 tonnes of cargo annually, including general cargo, perishables, pharmaceuticals, dangerous goods, electronics and fast moving consumer goods.
CGN is the third largest airport in Germany in terms of cargo operations with significant capacity for further growth. It operates 24 hours a day and is ideally located in the heart of Northwest Europe with excellent road connections. In 2021 cargo handled at CGN increased by 14% year over year, marking a new annual record for the airport.
dnata has executed agreements with the owner of Wisskirchen, Oliver Hellwig, to acquire 100% of the shares in the company. The parties agreed not to disclose details of the transaction. The acquisition is subject to approval by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action in Germany.
Stewart Angus, dnata’s Regional CEO for Europe, said: “We are delighted to announce dnata’s first cargo investment in Germany. This is part of our continued broader investment in cargo infrastructure. Since 2014 we have invested in nine new cargo facilities in Europe. We look forward to playing our role in the next stage of development of Cologne/Bonn Airport as a major cargo hub and I would like to thank Oliver Hellwig for his professionalism during this process.”
Thilo Schmid, Chairman of the Executive Board of Cologne Bonn Airport, said: “We are delighted to welcome dnata, a renowned global player in the field of airport services, to Cologne/Bonn. The commitment of dnata will help to further increase the efficiency in cargo handling in our Cargo Center and is proof of the great location quality of Cologne/Bonn Airport as well as its central importance as the most important logistics hub in NRW.”
In recent years, dnata has made significant investments in advanced infrastructure to enhance its cargo offering. This included the opening of new, state-of-the-art cargo facilities in Manchester (UK), Karachi and Lahore (Pakistan), and additional cargo capacity and infrastructure in Brussels (Belgium), Sydney (Australia) and Toronto (Canada). Most recently, dnata has announced that it would invest over €200 million in its operations in Amsterdam (The Netherlands) and operate one of the world’s largest and most advanced cargo facilities at Schiphol Airport. In addition, this spring dnata will open the second phase of the dnata City East project at London Heathrow (UK). As one of the world’s leading air services providers, dnata currently provides quality and reliable ground handling, cargo, catering and retail services at over 120 airports in 19 countries.