Amazon, which will open new air facilities this year at Fort Worth Alliance Airport, Wilmington Air Park, and Chicago Rockford International Airport, on June 18 announced a partnership with GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) to lease an additional 15 Boeing 737-800 cargo aircraft.
The online shopping giant said Tuesday that it will lease 15 more Boeing 737s as it seeks to grow its delivery business and get packages to shoppers’ doorsteps faster. Amazon is in the midst of speeding up its delivery time to one-day from two for its Prime members.
Amazon said it currently has 42 planes in its fleet and will have 70 by 2021.
The Seattle-based company wants more control over how its packages are delivered and rely less on UPS, the U.S. Postal Service and other carriers. Besides its fleet of planes, Amazon is building several package-sorting hubs at airports and has launched a program that lets contractors start businesses delivering packages in vans stamped with the Amazon logo.
Earlier this month, FedEx said it would stop air shipments for Amazon in the United States, reducing its ties with the company to focus on other e-commerce sites.
Amazon made the announcement at the International Paris Air Show. These fifteen aircraft will be in addition to the five Boeing 737-800’s already leased from GECAS and announced earlier this year. The aircraft will fly in the United States out of the more than 20 air gateways in the Amazon Air network.
“These new aircraft create additional capacity for Amazon Air, building on the investment in our Prime Free One-Day program,” said Dave Clark, Senior Vice President of Worldwide Operations at Amazon. “By 2021, Amazon Air will have a portfolio of 70 aircraft flying in our dedicated air network.”
“We’re delighted to support Amazon Air’s dedicated air network,” said Richard Greener, GECAS Cargo’s Senior Vice President. “The capability of the 737-800 freighter will further Amazon’s ability to provide reliable and regional delivery to its customers for years to come.”
Amazon Air’s operation launched in 2016 supporting package delivery to the retain giant’s customers. With advanced algorithms and software used for capacity and route planning, the Amazon Air operation can transport hundreds of thousands of packages per day, according to the company. The main Air Hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport will open in 2021.