ZURICH, January 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
gategroup, the world's leading independent provider of onboard products and services, has finalized an agreement with Virgin Atlantic Airways to provide a full end-to-end catering service for the airline's long-haul operations from its UK stations, London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Manchester and Glasgow.
The value of the agreement is about CHF 40-50 million per annum. The agreement for Gate Gourmet, which takes effect on June 1 this year, is for three years with an option for a further two years.
Three gategroup brands are involved in providing an innovative operating model extending across the UK for the provision of services to Virgin Atlantic.
Pourshins (supply chain management), Supplair (off-airport food assembly) and Gate Gourmet (catering and provisioning) will work in partnership to provide an end-to-end onboard catering solution. Pourshins and Supplair, headquartered near London Heathrow, will manage the menu and service design concept as well as the total food sourcing and distribution and will work with best-in-class food suppliers to ensure that menus include new and original products to strengthen Virgin Atlantic's food offering across its Upper Class, Premium Economy and Economy cabins. Gate Gourmet will provide the "last mile" handling services to and from the aircraft through airport-based facilities. Last mile services will include transport, packing and equipment processing.
"We are very pleased to be extending our relationship with Virgin Atlantic, one of the world's leading airlines," said gategroup Chief Executive Officer Andrew Gibson. He added: "We have been able to offer Virgin Atlantic an innovative solution which is leading edge and meets the airline's high-quality brand expectations."
Steve Griffiths, Chief Operating Officer of Virgin Atlantic Airways, said: "Over the last few months we've run an open and competitive process to select a supplier for our in-flight catering needs from the UK. We are delighted to have been able to structure this innovative approach to providing the best for our customers with gategroup."
gategroup already services Virgin Atlantic Airways at all of its US stations, in India and Australia.
gategroup is the leading independent global provider of onboard services to companies that serve people on the move. gategroup comprises the following brands: deSter, eGate Solutions, Gate Aviation, Gate Gourmet, Gate Safe, Harmony, Performa, potmstudios, Pourshins and Supplair.
The Group's world-class capabilities are focused in catering and hospitality, provisioning and logistics and onboard solutions. Our customers include top airlines and railroads around the world that rely on our expertise and solutions tailored to their guests, service offerings and geographic regions.
Shares of Zurich-based gategroup are traded on the SIX Swiss Exchange under the symbol GATE. Please visit http://www.gategroup.com.
About Virgin Atlantic:
Since it was founded 28 years ago, Virgin Atlantic Airways has become Britain's second largest airline serving the world's major cities. Now based at Gatwick, Heathrow and Manchester airports, Virgin Atlantic has a fleet of 37 aircraft and operates 34 long-haul services around the world and carries 5.5 million passengers a year.