Air Dispatch

Deal summary

Air Dispatch was founded in 2007 and provides centralised load control planning services, calculating the weight and balance conditions for aircraft prior to flight. Its other services include ULD (unit load device) asset tracking and the development of flight optimisation software. The company currently has 200 employees at its operations centres in Prague and Warsaw, and its client portfolio includes Air Berlin, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, LOT, SAS, Qantas and Qatar Airways.

Catalyst has a long standing relationship with Air Dispatch’s parent, Chapman Freeborn (a leading global aircraft broking business) which, having identified the niche opportunity and grown Air Dispatch, was now keen to realise its investment in the business and focus on Chapman’s core air broking offering.

What difference did we make?

Air Dispatch had a long term relationship with dnata which stood out as the logical strategic acquirer for the company. Founded in Dubai in 1959, dnata is one of the world’s largest air services providers offering ground handling, cargo, travel, and flight catering services in 75 countries across six continents. With over 38,000 employees, it is present at 129 airports across the globe.

We worked alongside Chapman Freeborn and the Air Dispatch management teams to ensure the dnata transaction met all stakeholder objectives. Our role extended beyond value maximisation and multijurisdictional legal negotiations into future management roles, incentivisation and transitional service arrangement negotiations.

A successful outcome was reached for all involved and the deal was completed with minimal distraction to both Chapman Freeborn and Air Dispatch, enabling the business to build on its already strong pipeline. The acquisition of Air Dispatch follows other recent high profile transactions by dnata, including the acquisition of Ground Services International in the US, RM Ground Services in Brazil and investment in ground handling operations in Milan and cargo facilities at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.

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What our client said
“It was a pleasure working with Catalyst. Air Dispatch is a subsidiary of a larger company and Catalyst did an excellent job of managing multiple stakeholder interests at our end whilst guiding me through the key aspects of the transaction that were pertinent to my position as both shareholder and future operational manager of the business under a new owner.” Nick Yeadon,
CEO Air Dispatch