New operation expands StandardAero’s footprint
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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 08/04/2015 (2857 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
STANDARDAERO is adding a strategic new business line to its already extensive operation for gas turbine engine maintenance repair and overhaul around Richardson International Airport.
The company, owned by Dubai Aerospace Enterprise Ltd., is making a multimillion-dollar investment in Winnipeg, effectively creating a new business called StandardAero Component Services (SACS) Canada.
The purchase and installation of several million dollars worth of machinery including new stripping and plating equipment will allow the Winnipeg operations to become an even larger player in the global business of engine parts repair.
“When it comes to the marketplace, component repair and overhaul is a growth business,” said Manny Atwal, vice-president of the new SACS Canada unit. “In the long term, we see a lot of future in that particular market.”
Among other things, the plan is to develop new repair services that are not currently available in the market. The company will work closely with engine original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) as well as the aircraft fleet operators who are looking for better longevity for parts.
The new Winnipeg shop will support its own engine maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) customers and it will also develop business with third-party MRO facilities including those working on engines StandardAero does not currently service.
The company already operates a stand-alone component-repair facility in Cincinnati — down the street from a major General Electric engines plant — and the decision to build out the capabilities in Winnipeg is partly in recognition of the strength and expertise held in the Winnipeg shop.
The Winnipeg shop will not duplicate what is already being done in Cincinnati. Atwal said certain repairs and process are better suited to be done in Winnipeg because of the existing skill set and the centre of excellence that exists here.
“Winnipeg is strategically important to StandardAero,” Atwal said. “We want to make sure we have good scale and base and growth in Winnipeg.”
The company intends to use its existing workforce in Winnipeg — about 1,400 people — for the initial ramp-up phase, but the plan is for that business to continue to grow, suggesting additions to the workforce would be needed in the future.
Some of the new lines will be up and running by the fourth quarter of this year, and additional fitting out will occur next year.
As well as new equipment, the multimillion-dollar investment will include a complete redesign of the interior space at its so-called Plant Three on Sargent Avenue — the site of a fire last year — optimizing product flow, using monitoring systems for improved process control and installing a dedicated research and development line.
The company currently operates in 12 buildings with about 665,000 square feet of space in Winnipeg. Its Cincinnati shop is about 250,000 square feet, with about 400 employees.
Martin Cash has been writing a column and business news at the Free Press since 1989. Over those years he’s written through a number of business cycles and the rise and fall (and rise) in fortunes of many local businesses.