Like Haeco, ST Aerospace, which recently acquired Volant Aerospace and DRB Aviation Consultants, has expanded its interior reconfiguration offerings—including a new line of seats branded ERGO—and expects this area of its business to bring a steady flow of work during the next 1.5 years.
Many MROs in the top 15 expect cabin interior projects to be one of the strongest growth areas in the next couple years. In particular, Sabena technics, with 1.8 million airframe maintenance man-hours in 2012, forecasts cabin modifications and VIP completions to be robust. It expects its 2013 numbers to be similar. SR Technics, with 881,000 airframe maintenance man-hours in 2012, includes inflight entertainment.
Timco Aviation Services, which like ST Aerospace is promoting turnkey interiors that include its own seats, sees increased stand-alone modification programs, in addition to scheduled maintenance visits as “airlines undertake projects to reduce fuel burn (e.g. winglets) as well as to enhance or align cabin interiors across fleets,” including new lavatory units and seats, says Leonard Kazmerski, Timco's vice president of marketing and business development.
SIA Engineering Co., which used 4.2 million of its 4.25 million available man-hours in 2012, also lists cabin retrofits as an expanding area. Besides providing complete cabin management services—from engineering design to procurement and installation—it also integrates communication systems such as inflight wireless high-speed broadband Internet and mobile phone services.
Not surprisingly, SIA Engineering and other MROs plan to add new widebody aircraft capabilities to expand their portfolios and revenues. The company also is looking at adding repair and management skills for the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350.
Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies (ADAT), part of the Mubadala Network, plans to start offering A380 MRO services this year—and 787 and A350 capabilities in the future. ADAT also expects to add Rolls-Royce Trent engines to its roster. The last 1.5 years were spent “right-sizing” and restructuring, but President Abdul Khaliq Saeed says the foundational changes are complete. This year is focused on “capability development” and expanding “integrated component and engine services.”
SR Technics, which also is part of the Mubadala Network, plans to enhance existing A380, 777 and 787 line, base and heavy maintenance products—including VIP services, engineering and modifications.
El Al Tech, which supports El Al Israel Airlines and third parties, targets next-generation narrowbody service expansion because the carrier is set to receive 6-8 new Boeing 737-900s. The eventual 23-aircraft fleet could increase its third-party base and heavy maintenance customers. The company completed 30,000 airframe maintenance man-hours for third-party customers last year.
Timco acquired a regional jet maintenance facility in Cincinnati last year and expects “to continue to add to existing regional jet capabilities” there in the next year, says Kazmerski.