Global investment company Mubadala’s aerospace division has had a successful 2019. The owner of all or part of Al Ain's Nibras Al Ain Aerospace Park, spares lessor Sanad, MROs Sanad Aerotech and SR Technics, business jet operator XOJet, and aerostructures concern Strata has built further on its increase in unit profits of 23 percent in 2018.
“[We] had a very special year,” Strata CEO Ismail Abdulla told AIN. “We celebrate our 10th anniversary [this month]. We have 13 production lines, all of which are single-source to Strata, and are the only company manufacturing these parts. From January to June, we delivered around 3,700 components to aircraft manufacturers.”
Strata is a Tier 1 supplier to major OEMs Airbus, Boeing, and Leonardo. “Over the last 12 months, we added Swiss OEM Pilatus to our portfolio. This is a long-term partnership, to manufacture the belly, as well as the flap-track fairings for the Pilatus PC-24. We are looking for other opportunities to expand relations with Pilatus. The global aerospace sector is highly competitive and we aim to continue growing and advancing our presence.”
Strata’s Emiratization rate is 58 percent, of which 86 percent are women. “Production will now be headed by a female UAE national, Noura Al Braiki; we announced this before the Dubai Airshow,” he said. “In her role, Noura will oversee Strata’s production system and planning functions, shared services, and fabrication and assembly units, all key company functions.”
Strata has also launched Strata Plus, to host its largest production work package to date, the Boeing 787 vertical fin. “This is the largest transfer of technology in our portfolio. Training for UAE engineers is taking place in Salt Lake City, Utah, and elsewhere. We are building knowledge in order to relocate production to the UAE.”
On the outlook for 2020, Abdulla said the market, especially for widebodies, is "extremely challenging," given macroeconomic conditions. “We are working on ensuring we introduce new production lines. Next year should be very exciting. We expect to ship the Boeing 787 vertical fin to the U.S.”
MRO solution provider Sanad was founded in 2010. “Sanad’s overall growth has continued to focus on entry-into-service aircraft like the Boeing 787, where Sanad now owns eight GEnx spare engines and a growing number of 787 rotable components on various long-term lease programs,” CEO Troy Lambeth told AIN. “The 787 spare engines and rotables now account for 25 percent of Sanad’s overall portfolio—a growing trend.”
Lambeth expects that trend to continue as the company looks to expand into other entry-into-service fleets like the Airbus A350, the Boeing 777X, and the neo and the Max—upon its anticipated return to service. “We expect to see our portfolio expand into other entry-into-service engine types including the Leap, the GTF and potentially the Trent XWB and Trent 1000—each powering aircraft types that we see large primary and secondary market opportunities to serve long-term.”