India’s first aircraft maintenance facility gets approval

India’s first aircraft maintenance facility gets approval

New Delhi: The first aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in India would come up at Hosur near Bangalore, with its promoter Air Works receiving the approval of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

Announcing that it had recently received DGCA approval, Air Works CEO Fredrik Groth said that the company, which already has one hangar at Hosur airport that can house two turboprop ATR-72 size aircraft, would construct two more larger hangars by 2009.

“We have plans to pump in $40 million into the project", he said, adding that the funds would be put into set up the additional hangars, the aircraft painting operations as well as for future engine and components facilities.

The company, which claims to be the largest general aviation and MRO firm in India, would provide services like line and base maintenance, aircraft painting, structural repairs, cabin and avionic upgrades. It would also offer component repairs and spare parts sourcing.

“We are extremely happy on being recognized for our efforts by DGCA and are now all set to commence operations as India’s first commercial MRO facility," he said.

“We now look forward to performing our services to the airlines of India, which so far have had to either build up in house maintenance capabilities or send their aircraft abroad for servicing," Groth said.

The company would start operations with the existing hangar and soon build two more no later than 2009 end at the Hosur airport, which has a 7,000 feet runway capable of accepting all types of commercial aircraft.

Air Works has already announced a joint venture with Air Livery Plc of the UK, as its partner on the upcoming dedicated state of the art paint hangar.

Air Works’ General Aviation MRO, Groth said that it was already the largest in India with over 60% market share.

Starting with the maintenance and overhaul work on a few DC-3s in the early 1950s, Air Works currently does DGCA approved maintenance on over 75 aircraft including Gulfstream, Bombardier, Dassault, Hawker, Cessna, Beech and others.

It had recently announced an authorized service centre agreement with US-based Honeywell to offer MRO services for Honeywell engines TFE 731 and CFE 738 series along with Auxiliary Power Units (APUs), along with navigation and communication equipment.