Atlanta-headquartered freight giant UPS has signed an agreement with Boeing, covering passenger to freight conversions on three Boeing 767s it recently acquired.

Announcing the agreement at the Paris Air Show, UPS Airlines president Brendan Canavan said, “We are expanding our uplift to meet our customers’ needs.” Demand, he said, is increasing because of the exponential growth in e-commerce. This means UPS is working on “smart capital investments” to support that trend.

“At UPS, we are big into 767 freighters. They are a workhorse; they are very reliable. We recently acquired some aircraft that are the same vintage as our existing 767s and after conversion they will be virtually identical,” Canavan said.

Boeing Global Services president and CEO Stan Deal said the UPS agreement is one of the first for the newly created Boeing support division. “We see demand for converted freighters to be a robust market,” Deal said.

The manufacturer’s market outlook forecasts a need for 400 widebody conversions over the next two decades, with strong demand for 767 freighter conversions.

In October, 2016 UPS announced the purchase of 14 747-8 freighters, with options to purchase 14 additional aircraft. UPS was the launch customer for the 767 freighter in 1995 and today the cargo specialist operates 184 Boeing aircraft.

Victoria Moores victoria.moores@penton.com