The service provider for airlines and airports, Swissport Executive Aviation is strengthening its position on the Moroccan market. After the opening, in 2018, of a first VIP terminal at Mohammed V airport in Casablanca, the subsidiary of the Swiss group Swissport International AG opens a second private lounge of equivalent standing, this time at Marrakech airport Menara.
The construction of the 500 m² private lounge mobilized an investment of MAD 8.5 million. The terminal offers a wide variety of luxury services and has a capacity of 30 passengers in the lounge, 5 passengers in the bar and 2 in the media area.
In addition to a space dedicated to crews, which can accommodate up to 20 members, including a TV lounge, leisure area, kitchen, two rest rooms and 2 bathrooms with shower. There is also another VIP lounge for 9 passengers. Its operation will generate no less than 14 direct and 10 indirect jobs. The new terminal has been operational since February 1.
Enough to take advantage of the particularly strong growth in passenger traffic recorded at Marrakech airport in 2019: +21.13%, behind that of Dakhla (+26.73%). Marrakech Menara Airport crossed the threshold of 6 million passengers for the first time on December 11.
With around 5.3 million passengers registered at the end of October 2019, Marrakech Menara airport is the 2nd in terms of passenger traffic. Since 2017, it has recorded double-digit growth rates with an average annual change of +16.42%. The choice of Marrakech for this investment was much easier and less risky, given its aura and its ability to attract investors, large and small fortunes from around the world.
The terminal will offer luxury services for the benefit of companies’ business customers. According to statistics at the end of December from ONDA, the Paris-Orly-Marrakech, Madrid-Marrakech and London-Gatwick-Marrakech air routes are ranked 3rd, 4th and 5th in the top 5 of the air routes with respectively 575.729, 407.311 and 383.790 passengers.
Swissport won, in May 2019, the international tender launched by ONDA and obtained a 7-year license at 15 airports in Morocco. The groundhandling service provider undertakes to invest more than MAD 65 million in 100% electric equipment, more than MAD 200 million for runway equipment.
To further differentiate its offer, the company will deploy electric buses (e-buses) on the tarmac of Moroccan airports to transport passengers from boarding gates to planes and parking lots. “35% of the fleet of ground support equipment (GSE) will be electric from the start of 2022, to reach 45% in 2026,” said the company.