Pattonair recently announced plans to build a new logistics facility in Bangalore, India, expected for an early 2019 opening. Given the company already has locations across Europe, Asia=--Pacific, North America and Latin America, why did it specifically choose to set up in India?
First, as a market, India will grow significantly over the next few decades. As a company, we need to always be aware of what opportunities lie ahead years from now. Specifically, there was an opportunity and requirement from our customer UTC Aerospace Systems, to support the company with inventory as it migrated production and started to invest in a campus facility in Bangalore. This initially involved putting some human resources on the ground back in 2014. Eventually, we saw the need to set up a fully-fledged entity of our own with our own warehouse that can support UTC and other customers identified. Finally, there’s a good opportunity to work with component manufacturers in India. They will make the parts and we can then work with them in terms of supporting the domestic market.
How big will the facility be?
We're anticipating it to be around 25,000 square feet and we have a shortlist of two potential sites.
Are there any figures around the growth India can generate for Pattonair?
Away from just UTC, we eventually we see this as a $100 million opportunity – simply because India’s aerospace segment will just keep growing. There will be gestation period in terms of developing that, and the work we will do in India won’t just be for a single customer – it’ll be a continuum going across the next decade.
Is Pattonair already engaging with potential Indian customers in the run up to the 2019 opening?
Yes, we are. Members of our team are engaging with prospective customers now and we’ve been sharing our strategy for India with them. This is important for an Indian manufacturing base, which wants to see proper commitment and develop a management team, capability and physical presence in-country rather than serving the market remotely.
Are there any plans to expand your existing locations in Dallas and Singapore?
Both of those are facilities that have expansion capabilities in terms of capacity. They’ve both grown strongly in the past 12 months – just recently, we announced a new contract in Dallas with Parker Aerospace to supply its fluid systems division. In Asia-Pacific, we opened a Japan office in February this year, which sprung out of the Singapore business. This followed our first contract win in Japan last year with All Nippon Airways to supply Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine parts for its MRO network. Based in Nagoya, this will is home to regional sales representatives. This comes back to our belief that it’s important to have a local presence on the ground and who understands the market.