09/12/2010

Step-Up For Dungannon High Flyers

A high-flying local company that supplies boarding equipment to airports throughout the world has signed a lucrative deal that will also boost Ryanair's growing operation in Germany.

Having already developed a portfolio of innovative equipment for a range of services including baggage handling and catering - and produced a multi-purpose aircraft loading system for the Airbus A380 superjumbo - Dungannon's Mallaghan Engineering has now secured the £100,000 contract.

With assistance from Invest Northern Ireland, the business won by Mallaghan is from Weeze Airport, near Duisburg in North Rhine Westphalia and on the Dutch border.

It follows a strategic marketing campaign launched by Mallaghan, with advice and practical support from Invest NI, to win contracts for its equipment from smaller regional airports throughout Germany.

The deal was announced by Sebastian Koellner, Mallaghan Sales Export Manager for Eastern and Central Europe, who said: "In 2009, we pinpointed a significant opportunity for our equipment in the 46-strong network of smaller regional airports which are being used increasingly by low cost airlines such as Ryanair, Air Berlin and Wizz Air.

"We had a strong presence especially in terms of our catering trucks and passenger stairs, in the main airports such as Frankfurt, the second biggest in Europe after London Heathrow, Munich, Leipzig and Nuremburg but not in the smaller ones.
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"I decided to approach the Invest NI office in Dusseldorf for guidance and received invaluable advice and support for a marketing campaign aimed at all 46 smaller airports.

"The support included market research, a very professional newsletter and follow up with calls to management at the airports," he explained.

"Feedback from this strategic approach was extremely positive and produced several invitations, including from Weeze Airport, to bid for business," he said.

Weeze Airport - a former RAF base - is being developed as a regional hub for scheduled flights and charter services by Ryanair and other airlines.

It offers flights throughout Europe including the UK, Ireland, Spain and other European centres.

Ryanair currently stations eight aircraft there for flights to 24 other locations in Europe and Weeze is expected to handle around 2.5 million passengers in 2010.

Dr Vicky Kell, Invest NI Trade Director said: "Mallaghan's success is an excellent example of the highly professional and strategically important support which Invest NI provides for local companies in established markets such as Germany and developing nations including India.

"Our in-market teams have a wealth of knowledge about business practices and procedures as well as practical experience of market conditions and opportunities.

"This enables them to assist and support companies in activities such as lead generation, logistics and strategic marketing initiatives that enhance their competitiveness and overall export capability," added Dr Kell.

(BMcC/KMcA)

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