Professional Aircraft Accessories is keeping its growth curve going by expanding capabilities to Boeing’s widely flown narrowbodies.
Professional Aircraft Accessories, previously focused on regional aircraft, began repairing 737 landing gear in 2018. “This market is growing rapidly for us,” says Vice President and General Manager Jonathan Clarke. The MRO is currently serving customers in the Central and South America regions, and Clarke believes the MRO will see revenue growth in 737 gears worldwide in 2020 and 2021. The Professional exec is seeing a significant uptick in demand across the board. “We are witnessing this specifically in the Boeing 737NG and Bombardier CRJ900 markets.”
The MRO believes its facilities in Titusville and Miami, Florida, will accommodate demand over the next two years but is seeking to bring more repair capability inhouse. It recently added a number of capabilities for 737NGs. “We plan to continue to increase our component capabilities along those lines,” Clarke says. Due to a busy schedule, Professional is adding staff and expanding shift coverage to include a first and second shift, six days a week, to meet obligations.
Professional Aircraft Accessories is seeing challenges in recruiting mechanics for this build-up. “It’s been difficult in Central Florida, but the mechanic shortage is being felt across the country in all aspects of the aerospace industry,” Clarke observes. The MRO addresses these challenges in several ways. It has an aggressive marketing strategy to attract prospective employees from aerospace programs, local colleges and high schools close to its locations. Its staff also gives lectures at schools, speaks with students and provides tours of facilities to ignite excitement for what the aviation industry has to offer.
Clarke says he has not yet noticed a significant impact from predictive tools on landing gear maintenance. But the MRO itself has used mean-time-between-failure data to anticipate increased component throughputs and to ramp up exchange pools for customers. “Our employees are extremely innovative and are constantly identifying ways to increase reliability and develop repair capability rather than just replace parts. We have developed repairs that improve products like the Bombardier CRJ200 nose landing gear main fittings as well as the steering control modules based on high failures experienced in these components.”