EBACE Convention News

Flying Colours Seeing Bounce in MRO Demand from Europe

 - May 24, 2023, 8:13 AM

More European operators seeking a single source for MRO services are heading to North America, Canada-based Flying Colours (Booth F40) said this week at EBACE 2023.

“Aircraft on the ground are not earning their keep, which is why carrying out multiple workstreams simultaneously from a single supplier is a major attraction for European owners,” said Flying Colours executive v-p Eric Gillespie. “The fact that we have all the services required to complete the work under one roof, technicians with thousands of hours of experience, and a modern paint shop is a real draw.”

In addition to a shortage of servicing options in Europe, economic factors play into the decision to go to North America for aircraft work. “The strength of the UK and European currencies also make the trip across the pond financially worth it,” Gillespie said. “The owner appreciates the value working with us brings to his operations, in terms of capabilities and finances.”

The transatlantic MRO trend is exemplified by a Europe-based Bombardier Challenger 605 slated for induction in the fourth quarter for maintenance, paint, interior upgrades, and landing gear overhaul at Flying Colours' facility in Peterborough, Ontario.

The work scope includes an extensive 16-year, 192-month inspection and landing gear overhaul. And while the aircraft is down, the 12-, 24-, 36-, and 96-month items will be performed, along with any recommended service bulletins and airworthiness directives that may be due.

The owner and Flying Colours are now defining the interior refresh. “Minor wood repair work, an updated divan covering, and a new carpet are all under discussion,” said Gillespie. “Externally the aircraft will receive a full fuselage strip and paint as a bright white paint effect will be complemented with feature gray and blue stripes along the fuselage, up the airplane tail, and across the rudder.”

Maintenance, interiors, and exterior work will be conducted in parallel, which significantly reduces downtime and maximizes the budget. Work is expected to require about 10 weeks.

The company is currently in discussion with three European large jet operators and anticipates “welcoming their airframes later this year.” That number could rise following EBACE. “We always return from Geneva with new business,” Gillespie concluded.