Edinburgh's Menzies Aviation moves into sixth Latin American country with Chilean acquisition

Menzies, the Edinburgh-based global aviation group, has acquired a controlling stake in a firm that provides ground and air cargo handling services in Chile.

Agunsa Aviation Services was a wholly owned subsidiary of Agencias Universales, a large and diverse Chilean business with a long history in logistics, originally in shipping logistics, and in more recent years in aviation. The deal value has not been disclosed.

The firm provides services to several international airlines at Santiago de Chile Airport, including United Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Qatar Airways. It also operates a 110,000-square-foot on-airport cargo warehouse.

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This new Chilean business will complement Menzies’ existing operations in five other countries in Central and South America - Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Guatemala.

Philipp Joeinig, chief executive, Menzies Aviation, said: “I am excited to enter our sixth country in Latin America and strengthen relationships with some of our largest global airline partners.

“We have found a unique partner in Agencias Universales SA, which has a long and successful history as a leader in logistics in the region and we are looking forward to expanding our business and footprint with our new partner.”

Bosses at Menzies recently accepted a takeover offer by a Kuwaiti firm, creating a business with a combined global headcount of 35,000.

John Menzies started out in 1833 when its eponymous founder opened a bookshop at 61 Princes Street, Edinburgh.

Menzies Aviation has acquired a controlling stake in Agunsa Aviation Services in Chile.

The newspaper and magazine distribution business was spun out in 2018, creating Menzies Distribution, and leaving the rest of the firm to focus on providing aviation services.

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