Engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce (Booth B311) is confident that operations for its corporate jet engine production and aftermarket services will continue as normal in any Brexit circumstance. That was the message early last month as numerous European and British companies were expecting a “No-deal” Brexit, which could eventually affect its supply chain and corporate operations.
“From the services perspective, we have spent a considerable amount of time preparing for both the ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ Brexit. We have been working to get approvals in place with the various aviation authorities, and additional approvals for the Rolls-Royce Deutschland facility,” said Rolls-Royce senior vice president for services-business aviation, Andy Robinson. He added that the company has moved “thousands” of materials and parts from the main UK store to North America and also a new storage facility in Frankfurt.
“We are in a good place and we target to have everything completed by March 29, and we have done everything we can to protect our customers,” added Alan Mangels, Rolls-Royce vice president for sales and marketing. In addition to 76 authorized service centers worldwide, Roll-Royce has numerous spares stores catering to CorporateCare clients located in Dubai, Singapore, and Beijing—a site that was added in December 2018.
Similarly in Dahlewitz, Germany where the new Pearl 15 engines and BR700 family engines are manufactured, the company has all the materials and approvals buffered and in place with the relevant authorities.
After launching CorporateCare Enhanced at NBAA, Rolls-Royce is hoping that the momentum gained since October 2018 will continue at ABACE, where the company will be promoting the product. CorporateCare Enhanced covers the entire powerplant unit, including nacelles and thrust-reversers, as one of its main features.
Mangels said that CorporateCare Enhanced has seen better-than-expected uptake, across all geographic areas. As the product now also covers corrosion on nacelle items, Asian customers have taken particular interest, even if the rates are a little higher for Asia-based aircraft.
“Our customers understand that there are certain environmental conditions that the aircraft is under in Asia, particularly with the humidity, [and] it's fair that Rolls-Royce charges a little more, given that we hold 100 percent of the risk and responsibility to ensure these engines operate at the highest standards,” Mangels explained.
Another service provided by CorporateCare is on-wing services, where a group of trained Rolls-Royce technicians are on standby worldwide to respond to technical issues not solved by local authorized service centers. Robinson said the company aims to clear the AOG within 24 hours, meaning the technicians have to be dispatched in four hours and arrive on site within 16 hours. There are 72 technicians located at 16 locations, although in Asia, there is a team stationed only in Singapore. However, Robinson said Rolls-Royce is looking to hire more technicians to be based in Beijing or Hong Kong.
Both added that Asia is one of the leading markets for the company, and since most operators in the region prefer large-cabin long-range jets, especially the Gulfstream G650, it is an important market to Roll-Royce as it supplies the engines for the respective aircraft.
Robinson said Rolls-Royce has performed China specific training in China, and the training school in Singapore has performed customized training for the Asian market. He revealed that the company would be employing a new local service representative in China to support the Asian fleet alongside the current sole representative based in Hong Kong.