ABX Acquires Cargo Holdings As Its Pilots Vote Down a Contract Offer

After rejecting an unsolicited bid to be acquired by ASTAR Air Cargo Holdings in late July, Wilmington, OH-based ABX has now reached agreement to purchase Cargo Holdings International (CHI) of Orlando, FL. In addition to providing air cargo transportation and related service to domestic and foreign air carriers and others that outsource air cargo lift needs, CHI leases aircraft as well as providing fuel management, specialized transportation management and air charter brokerage services.

For its part, ABX Air provides air cargo services through its 15 domestic US hubs. It also provides charter, maintenance and package handling services for a number of customers. Together the combination will have a total fleet of 135 aircraft, including what is claimed to be the largest fleet of 767 aircraft in the world. CHI owns five Boeing 767-200s and one 757-200, undergoing freighter conversion.

For the moment, ABX Air flight crewmembers have rejected the company’s most recent contract proposal by a margin of 98.8% to 1.2%, according to their union, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 1224. Major points of contention deal with compensation and retirement benefits as well as the union’s allegation that ABX abuses its emergency system operations because of what it views as inadequate staffing. Mediation between the two parties is now underway in Washington, DC.

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