France’s Safran Nacelles is planning to increase its nacelle footprint in Asia-Pacific, stationing field representatives in the region and eventually opening a nacelle shop in the region.
Speaking at the sidelines of a NacelleLife deal with Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA), Safran EVP customer support and services Olivier Savin said the company saw the importance of Asia-Pacific with more more carriers taking delivery of the Airbus A320neo with CFM Leap-1 engines, the A330neo with Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, as well as the eventual COMAC C919 airliner—all of which have Safran nacelles.
Savin said Safran expects to have 20 customer support managers and field representatives to respond to nacelle problems in Asia, and noted such service is commonly seen from engine manufacturers and hopes to "copy and paste" that field representative model for nacelle services. It also set up a 24/7 call center about 1.5 years ago, responding to all nacelle related problems and queries using a single contact point. Also, the future Asia nacelle shop will complement the existing shops in France, Dubai and Indianapolis, and discussions are still underway with partners.
The 10-year customized NacelleLife contract for ANA’s three A380s will see the Tokyo-based airline having access to Safran Nacelles’ shared pool of spare parts and components, as well as the positioning of a spare nacelle air inlet at Honolulu, Hawaii, a location not quickly accessible in the event of an AOG.
Even with Airbus announcing the discontinuation of the A380, Savin thinks there are still plenty of years left for the superjumbo flying with the inherent airlines and even as a second-hand aircraft—hence, Safran’s nacelle support will continue.
Savin added that the evolution and development of new high-bypass engines makes modern nacelles with composite parts more complex, thus NacelleLife can give airlines with different operating models a choice to package its nacelle support solutions, a trend that is becoming more common in the market.
Since its launch in April 2018, Safran has secured 30 NacelleLife contracts, 30% of which comes from the Asian market.