Monday, November 26th, 2018



Piaggio Aerospace turns to Italian government with request to be put into receivership

Owing to “the state of insolvency of the company,” Italy’s Piaggio Aerospace has turned to the Italian government with a request to be put into receivership. This comes despite a current firm order for eight P.1HH unmanned aircraft (a variant of the P-180 business aircraft) from the United Arab Emirates with deliveries expected to commence by year end.

The recent change in government in Italy in March, which saw the country’s incumbent center-left government defeated before a populist coalition, has resulted in a catastrophic delay in confirmation of an order from the Italian Ministry of Defence for 20 P2.HH variants, valued at US$874 million, which have greater endurance.

Prior to March’s election, the program received launch funding in this year’s defense budget with the head of the commission, Francesco Saverio Garofani, confirming that the order would procee without a commission vote. However, since then the program has stalled, with the new parliament failing to vote on the order as it is under pressure by the coalition government to make cuts in defense spending. Italian officials are also worried that the P2.HH will overlap with the Euromale drone that European partners, including Italy, are currently developing.

Italian union FIM-CISL blamed Piaggio Aerospace’s problems on the government’s delay in firming up on the drone order, asking the government to find new investors to save the firm, while also pushing the drone order through. The Democratic Party, which was voted out of government in March, accused the new government of “being unable to take a decision in all these months on the €766 million (US$874 million) acquisition of the P2.HH.”

Piaggio Aerospace is owned by Mubadala Development Company, an Abu Dhabi-based strategic investment and development company.

TP Aerospace

United Technologies obtains final regulatory approval for Rockwell Collins acquisition

United Technologies has received the final regulatory approval needed to close its acquisition of its US$30 billion purchase of aircraft parts maker Rockwell Collins.

The conclusion of the regulatory review by China's State Administration for Market Regulation clears the way for United Technologies to proceed with the proposed acquisition announced on September 4, 2017. The acquisition is expected to close within three business days.

United Technologies Corp., based in Farmington, Connecticut, provides high-technology systems and services to the building and aerospace industries.

IATA Regional Vice President North Asia to retire

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced the retirement of Baojian ZHANG, IATA’s Regional Vice President (RVP) for North Asia effective December 14, 2018.

Zhang joined IATA from the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) in 1994 and founded IATA’s operations in China. Under Zhang’s strong leadership, IATA membership in North Asia has grown to 36 airlines with China having the largest concentration of IATA member airlines of any country. Over the last 24 years IATA’s China team grew from 3 to exceed 130 today. And IATA’s BSP in China is the largest in the world, recording nearly 190 million transactions in 2017.

Until a permanent successor is named, Conrad Clifford, IATA’s RVP for Asia Pacific will also lead IATA’s efforts in North Asia.

GA Telesis

Stratos continues growth, managed portfolio exceeds US$1 billion

Stratos, a leading aircraft investment specialist providing acquisition, re-marketing, advisory and capital raising services to airlines, lenders and investors in large commercial aircraft, has arranged the acquisition, financing and delivery of two Airbus widebodies leased to Asian flag carriers which has increased the size of its managed portfolio to 14 aircraft worth over US$1 billion.

Stratos has rapidly expanded its portfolio since adding lease management to its capabilities in mid-2017. Providing full aircraft servicing to investors, Stratos has grown its platform from the
former GPA offices in Shannon, Ireland. In addition, Stratos is actively raising and syndicating aircraft-backed debt, remarketing and sourcing aircraft for airlines and investors and has recently
secured commitments to double its aircraft portfolio in the next 6 months.

To date, Stratos has remarketed 27 aircraft worth US$600 million, sourced 28 aircraft worth US$1.3 billion and raised or traded US$800 million in senior debt.

Serbia receives first out of nine H145Ms

The Serbian Minister of Defence Aleksandar Vulin visited the Airbus Helicopters Donauwörth site to accept the first H145M for the Serbian Air Force. In December, two H145Ms will be delivered to the Serbian Ministry of Interior. Altogether, Serbia will receive nine H145Ms, earmarked for the Air Force and for the Ministry of Interior. Four of the Air Force’s aircraft will be equipped with the HForce weapon management system.

The contract between Airbus Helicopters and Serbia foresees transfer of technology, spare parts, tools and documentation for the helicopters’ maintenance and repair. Airbus Helicopters will also certify Serbia's Moma Stanojlovic aeronautical plant as a centre for the maintenance of Gazelle helicopters and will include it in its overhaul network. Airbus will also support Serbian manufacturing plants and research and development institutions to obtain relevant qualifications and certificates to become a supplier.


N3 overhauls 1.000th Rolls-Royce engine in Arnstadt, Germany

A Rolls-Royce Trent 900 engine, powering an Airbus A380 of Asiana Airlines, is the 1.000th aircraft engine that has undergone maintenance in the workshops of N3 Engine Overhaul Services (N3) in Arnstadt, Germany.

The joint venture of Lufthansa Technik and Rolls-Royce has been in operation for 11 years and currently employs over 700 people. “This is another significant milestone of our German-British success story” says Nicole Fehr, Director and General Manager. “With this experience and over 40 international airline customers we are now an inherent and mature partner within the global Trent MRO network”.

The capacity of the modern plant with its own test facility is between 150 to 200 engines per year. Besides being the repair and overhaul experts for Trent 500, Trent 700, Trent 900 and most recently the Trent XWB, N3 also continues to grow its engine component repair capabilities. N3 is currently training over 50 young people to become engine specialists and logistics experts.

Magellan Group

Caribbean Airlines orders 12 737 MAX 8 jets

Caribbean Airlines has chosen to enhance and renew its single-aisle fleet with the 737 MAX 8. The carrier, which has long operated the Next-Generation 737, will take delivery of 12 MAX airplanes in the coming years.

The airline commemorated the selection of the MAX during a ceremony featuring national dignitaries, including the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, the Honorable Keith Rowley, and Caribbean Airlines Chief Executive Officer, Garvin Medera.

"Boeing has been by our side since Caribbean Airlines was founded twelve years ago using the 737-800. The 737 MAX allows us to continue offering a safe and comfortable experience for our passengers, while significantly improving fuel efficiency and environmental performance," said Medera. "All of these elements position us for long-term success."


Willis Asset Management chooses Commsoft’s OASES for new CAMO operation

Commsoft's MRO IT system, OASES, has been selected by Willis Asset Management to support its newly launched CAMO operation, which will be a key service provision in its growing platform of aviation advisory and asset management services.

Willis Asset Management, a subsidiary of Willis Lease Finance Corporation, provides independent and expert aviation advisory services as well as technical and commercial management solutions for both aircraft and engines. The company currently manages a global portfolio of over 700 aero engines with customers including a large variety of airlines, major lessors, OEMs, MROs and financial institutions around the globe.

Karl Gibson, Vice President, commented:
“The launch of Willis Asset Management CAMO services will add a new dimension to our broad range of aviation programs. We will be growing the Willis CAMO platform in combination with our Part 145 maintenance and Airframe services to provide a truly unique service offering for our clients.”

Airbus inaugurates first Level D-qualified A320neo simulator in the Americas

Airbus’ newest training center in Denver is now home to the first A320neo full flight simulator (FFS) in the Americas. The simulator just achieved Level D certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with four engine fits -- including the NEO.

This simulator complements the two existing A320 Family, FAA-certified Level D FFS in the Denver Airbus Training Center. FAA FFS Level D is the highest level of FFS certification currently available.

The latest FFS was produced by L3 Commercial Aviation, who will also shortly supply the new Training Center with an additional FFS and two Flat Panel Trainer devices for the A320 model.

Royal Aero

NAC delivers one Embraer E190 to Stobart Air on lease

Stobart Air, the regional franchise flying partner to leading airlines, has taken delivery of one Embraer E190 aircraft, MSN 19000218, on lease from Nordic Aviation Capital (NAC).

Stobart Air operates up to 860 flights weekly across 42 routes throughout 10 European countries from bases in the UK & Ireland. The airline operates a fleet of 19 aircraft with routes across Dublin, Cork, Shannon, Kerry and Donegal Airport in Ireland and from London’s Southend Airport and the Isle of Man.


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