Please describe Royal Jet’s operation.
We are a VVIP charter operator and we offer a variety of services. Our fleet is mainly comprised of our 8 Boeing Business Jets, which make us the largest BBJ operator in the world and the largest utilizer of this aircraft type. We also own two Bombardier Global 5000s and one Gulfstream 300.
We also do some medevac flights on our BBJs based on requests, as we have an in-house capability to convert the airplane into a flying ambulance on the line in about three hours. Patients come to the plane in an ambulance and fly with their doctors and our dedicated and qualified medical team. Where the customer requires a smaller aircraft for their mission, we partner with other qualified operators.
In addition to this conversion capability, what other in-house MRO capabilities does Royal Jet have?
In term of MRO, we have complete line and base maintenance capability at our Abu Dhabi station. We do our own A checks on the BBJ fleet and our own C checks on the Bombardier and Gulfstream fleet. We also perform certain service bulletins, directives and modifications and handle our own CAMO. We have a team of planners, technical records specialists and engineers available 24/7 and a logistics department to support for our fleet and for this have two GCAA approvals: Part 145 and CAMO.
What are your biggest challenges?
At the moment, we don’t have our own hangars. We tend to borrow hangars locally, where available. Etihad is one of the options. However, we had a change of leadership early last year and they are very much in support of the Royal Jet MRO concept, and they are keen to build a Royal Jet hangar.
We could be launching that in a couple of months. After it starts, the completion would probably take 12-18 months.
In addition to the hangar, what other changes do you expect?
We are looking to leverage this experience and capability by offering MRO and CAMO support to third parties. We have already begun providing these services to select local operators and, have signed a memorandum of understanding with JSSI last year to become a service provider. We also have had discussions with several OEMs with a view to becoming an approved service center. They are keen for us to have that capability because they know what we can offer to their numerous local and regional customers.
We have a strong core—which also includes ground handling and a beautiful FBO in Abu Dhabi—so we can serve our customers better with one-stop shopping.
Do you have space in Abu Dhabi already allocated?
Yes, we have a strong relationship with the airport.