Smart logistics can be worth as much as smart repairs in determining that critical maintenance variable, turnaround time. And there are innovations happening in logistics as well as repair techniques.
For example, The Aerospace Logistics Alliance (TALA) has just been awarded a logistics contract by a major Saudi Arabian MRO company. And TALA’s parent company has also acquired its own Part-145 aircraft repair station.
TALA CEO Joël Glusman sees both developments as justifying his unique approach to aerospace logistics. “We will set up a team in Riyadh and Jeddah, and bring best logistics practices to Saudi Arabia,” Glusman says.
The Part-145 station will give TALA some distinctive logistic capabilities. For example, if a Boeing 777 is grounded by an engine that needs a replacement in a remote station, TALA’s now certified repair staff can be sent to shorten the expensive AOG duration by removing the old engine and replacing it with the new one as part of TALA’s logistics offering. That could be worth more than $1 million to the operator of a grounded widebody.
All this is added to a specific approach to aerospace logistics that TALA took from its startup in 2012. The company was spun off from France’s Qualitair & Sea in order to be a global competitor to logistics providers like Kuehne + Nagel. But unlike other global logistics companies, TALA would confine itself exclusively to the aerospace sector.
Though founded in France and serving a global market, TALA established its base in Miami, Florida, because Miami had so many MROs and suppliers.
And Glusman traveled the world looking for another part of TALA’s unique approach. He found about 60 local logistics companies serving 150 airports around the world that already did aerospace work. These would become his licensees as part of the TALA network.
The alliance of local aerospace logistics providers has grown in six years to about $200 million in annual revenue. In addition to moving kilograms of aerospace parts, TALA generates and transmits kilobytes of data by constantly monitoring its customers’ shipments.
TALA does not yet do demand forecasting for its customers, but Glusman says that service might be considered in the future.