Sikorsky Aircraft (Booth L39) is taking the first step toward expanding its presence in Southeast Asia by establishing an office in Malaysia. The announcement at the Singapore Airshow follows recent Sikorsky developments in the neighboring country, with Sikorsky Aerospace Services (SAS), the company’s aftermarket division, signing a memorandum of understanding in December with Malaysia’s Aviation Design Center and MRO and modification center, Airod. Under this agreement the companies will “explore aircraft maintenance and support opportunities” for Sikorsky’s S-61/H-3 helicopters, including an upgraded S-61T.
The signing, at Malaysia’s Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (LIMA) exhibition last December, signaled a new lease on life for Royal Malaysian Air Force S-61s, which were slated for replacement by Eurocopter EC725 Super Cougars. “This MOU represents the first step in discussing potential support capabilities for the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s S-61 platform,” Samir Mehta, SAS vice president and chief operating officer, said at LIMA. “It is our strategic objective to provide customized solutions to a wide range of customers with complex fleet requirements.”
“Malaysia is centrally located in [Southeast Asia], with one of the strongest aerospace markets in the region,” said Linda Scott, Sikorsky Southeast Asia office general manager. “Opening an office in Malaysia allows Sikorsky to be best located to support all of its Southeast Asia customers, and we look forward to the new opportunities to grow our relationships in the region.”
Sikorsky also announced an S-92 order from the Korea Coast Guard under that country’s Multi-Purpose Helicopter Program. The aircraft is scheduled for delivery in December 2013, and Korea has expressed an interest in acquiring three additional S-92s, Sikorsky said. The company has delivered 151 S-92s since 2004.
Japan’s Coast Guard has ordered four Sikorsky S-76Ds to replace helicopters that were damaged during March 2011 tsunami. Delivery of the first S-76Ds to customers begins later this year, Sikorsky said.
Here at Singapore, Sikorsky subsidiary Composite Technology announced new capabilities to support S-92 and S-76 main- and tail-rotor-blade maintenance and repair through its Composite Technology International Pte. Ltd. (CTIS) venture. CTIS is a joint venture of Composite Technology, Eurocopter Southeast Asia and Singapore Technologies Aerospace Engineering (Booth C01).
“The addition of Sikorsky helicopter rotor-blade repair capabilities broadens the CTIS range of helicopter aftermarket services for the Asia Pacific region,” said Phua Poey Chor, CTIS general manager. “Sikorsky helicopter operators in the region can now benefit from this convenience and receive greater value from our comprehensive suite of services,” he added.