FARNBOROUGH, England - GE Engine Services, Inc., is further expanding its overhaul and maintenance network through the creation of a new joint company, GE VARIG Engine Services, to be located at VARIG's Gale“o International Airport engine service facility in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. GE Engine Services, through its GE-Celma subsidiary located in Petropolis, Brazil, will own 95 percent of the new joint company, while VARIG will retain 5 percent ownership. GE VARIG Engine Services will maintain and overhaul primarily CFM56-3, CF6-50, and CF6-80C2 engines for VARIG and third-party customers. "The formation of a new engine services facility with a strategic customer such as VARIG affords us the opportunity to offer a tremendous service network in South America," said Bill Vareschi, president and chief executive officer of GE Engine Services, Inc. "And because of the synergies gained by our acquisition of Celma in 1996, we will be able to take advantage of this expanded service quickly and seamlessly." Final closing is anticipated by the end of September. The world leader in total aviation services, GE Engine Services is on track for a record sales year of nearly $5 billion in 1998. That would represent a more than 65 percent sales increase over 1997 sales of $3 billion, and more than double 1996 sales of $2.3 billion. GE Engine Services provides comprehensive overhaul and repair of aircraft engines, components, and accessories of GE Aircraft Engines, the engines of CFM International, the 50/50 joint company of Snecma of France and General Electric Company of the United States, as well as engines produced by other manufacturers.