Swedish company Aviation Capacity Resources (ACR) has stepped up efforts to expand its international presence in the European air traffic services market.

The company has appointed Swiss Industry veteran Marek Bekier as new senior vice-president Europe to lead ACR’s venture in Europe.

In 2010, the Swedish Aviation Act cleared the way for the deregulation of air traffic navigation services in Sweden, opening up control tower and approach services at airports to competition.

As Europe’s first private provider of air traffic services, ACR has won 14 of the 17 procurements the company has participated in since 2010.

ACR founder and CEO Wilhelm Wohlfahrt said: “The Swedish deregulation is a success, and airports have been able to reduce the costs of air traffic services by approximately 30% to 40% with documented enhanced safety.

"Since ACR entered the market, air traffic services in Europe have started to change, and competition or cooperation across national borders has become increasingly common."

“It has echoed around Europe, and the trend towards permitting competition in other markets is strong. Many airports in Europe have cost-effectiveness problems or need to become more profitable.”

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ACR aims to seize opportunities to be hired as a subcontractor to national air traffic service providers.

It also plans to offer more cost-effective air traffic services that focus on customer satisfaction, higher quality and sustained safety.

Bekier said: “Since ACR entered the market, air traffic services in Europe have started to change, and competition or cooperation across national borders has become increasingly common.

“An example of this is that the air traffic services at Gatwick Airport have been taken over by the German air navigation service provider (ANSP) from NATS.”

Bekier added: “It means that we can help the national monopoly operators to manage air traffic services at smaller regional airports, where we because of our less overhead can significantly cut costs.

“These savings can be critical for the survival of some airports and therefore also good for the monopoly operator.”

ACR manages air traffic control (ATC) services for 14 airports across Sweden, of which the largest airports are Stockholm-Skavsta and Stockholm-Västerås.

To date, competition in air traffic services has been allowed across five European countries, including the UK, Spain, Sweden, Germany and Norway.