Lee Ann Shay, Singapore
Sabena technics opened a component repair shop in Singapore’s Seletar Aerospace Park on Sept. 26 because its business in the region had “reached a critical size so it made sense,” says Thibaut Campion, COO (production) of Sabena technics Asia.
The France-based MRO has 70 customers in Asia-Pacific, with half of them on power by the hour contracts. Adding the 2,500-sq-meter facility here should cut turnaround times, lower logistics costs and better serve customers in the region.
Two new contracts include an ATR 72-500 component support deal for Hunnu Air, a Mongolian airline, as well a five-year component MRO contract covering ATR 72-600 and 72-500 aircraft for Myanmar-based Air KBZ.
The repair shop initially is opening with structural, mechanical, pneumatics and avionics components, but it will add fuel and hydraulics repairs in 2017.
Campion says the component repair facility will launch with 80 part numbers, expand that to 140 in 2017 and then follow with an additional 20-30 per year afterwards. Right now turboprops—especially the ATR 42/72—will generate 80% of the volume, with Airbus and Boeing narrowbodies the rest, says Campion. That will change as the facility ramps up, gains experience and adds new capabilities that even cross over to helicopters and military operators.
Philippe Delisle, Sabena Technics Asia CEO, tells Aviation Week that he expects the Singapore facility to generate US$15 million this year, $20 million in 2017 and $30 million by 2020. To put this in perspective, the Sabena technics group generates 400 million euros annually, of which, 180 million euros comes from components.
At the facility opening here, Campion said he expects to receive EASA Part 145 certification on Sept. 26 or 27 (it has been approved but is waiting for the paperwork). He expects to receive Singapore CAAS and US FAA Part 145 maintenance approval in October, with Vietnam CAA and Thailand DCA approval by the year’s end.
Sabena technics opened a component warehouse in Changi Airport’s tax free zone in Singapore in August 2014.