Global air services provider dnata today announced it has signed an agreement to acquire Qantas’ catering businesses.
The agreement is subject to approval from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
Qantas’ catering businesses include wholly-owned subsidiaries Q Catering Limited and Snap Fresh Pty Limited. Q Catering has centres in four Australian ports – Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, with its largest airline customer being Qantas. Snap Fresh is a state-of-the-art meal production plant in Queensland, specialising in Australian-made frozen meals for airlines and customers in the healthcare and food retail industries.
Commenting on the agreement, dnata's Divisional Senior Vice President of catering, Robin Padgett said, "This agreement reflects our confidence in Australia as a market and the ongoing growth potential into the future."
"By combining dnata’s network strength and international talent with Qantas’ domestic catering expertise, this will allow us to further grow our presence and deliver catering excellence to more customers across Australia than ever before. This includes investing in more infrastructure, starting with a new catering facility in Sydney."
"We look forward to the opportunity to welcome the employees from Qantas’ inflight catering businesses to the dnata team."
Under the agreement, dnata will supply catering for Qantas flights for an initial period of ten years, and Qantas will continue to work with key suppliers in menu design and development.
Qantas Domestic CEO, Andrew David, added: "The catering businesses will benefit significantly from dnata’s global footprint, catering expertise, and ability to drive investment and growth for what is a core focus of its operation."
"Customers will continue to enjoy Qantas’ premium service, including unique Rockpool-designed menus for First and Business passengers, showcasing the best of Australian produce for millions of travellers each year."
"Together with dnata, we’ll continue to deliver the inflight food and beverage experience we know our customers value, just as we work with catering companies in offshore ports for our international flights."
Dubai-headquartered dnata already operates 11 catering facilities in Australia, currently trading under the dnata catering brand (recently rebranded from Alpha Flight Services). dnata employs more than 4000 people in Australia across its catering, cargo and ground handling businesses.
Over the past 12 months dnata has invested significantly in growing its global catering network. Its most recent milestones include the opening of a catering facility in Dublin, Ireland, the opening of its $50m Melbourne catering facility and an agreement to acquire New York-based caterer 121 inflight catering. It is also currently constructing a facility in Vancouver, Canada.