Throughout 2018 Falcon Aviation has continued to make progress towards fulfilling its core mission to expand infrastructure in the Middle East to support growing business aviation activity. It is also gearing up to be a more active player in the regional aircraft market too. A shift in its business in the UAE will see its established Al Bateen Executive Airport, Abu Dhabi HQ evolving into a premier turboprop MRO base, supporting the Bombardier Q400, where it has full base maintenance capabilities.
“Business jet MRO will become more focused on our new DWC Dubai facilities, freeing up space at Al Bateen for regional aircraft types, a sector which is also getting busy,” said Nicolas Tejera, Director of Maintenance at Falcon Aviation. “We are highlighting our intentions here at MEBAA as we will be taking guests over (on an invitation/request to see basis) to our new MRO facility in DWC. It is nearly finished and due to be formally opened in Q1 2019. »
The first types to be supported for base maintenance will be the Embraer Legacy and Lineage family.
The decision to specialize in Business Jet Base Maintenance at DWC is very much in line with market demand, said Capt Raman Oberoi, COO of Falcon Aviation, noting the DWC base will grow in significance, complementing the Falcon Aviation FBO in the VIP Terminal of Dubai South facility; and the Falcon Aviation managed DWC Heliport, which runs under its AOC. Falcon Aviation is anticipating upped demand during December and to highlight its capabilities in the helicopter charter market too it is showcasing a Leonardo AW169 Helicopter in VIP layout in the static.
New Honeywell Aerospace Authorized Channel Partner.
Falcon Aviation will also be highlighting at MEBAA a partnership with Honeywell Aerospace, whereby Falcon Aviation becomes an authorized Channel Partner in the UAE. This marks the first dealership for a large second tier supplier, complementing its long-standing status with the airframe OEMs like Leonardo, Bell, Airbus Helicopters, Bombardier and Embraer and Pilatus.
Getting ready to fly in Kuwait – for KOC
With an 800m by 200m wide heliport at Kuwait Oil Company premises newly built, Falcon Aviation is getting ready to commence a five-year onshore and offshore oil and gas contract with KOC this month. It has built up a workforce of 38, including 15 pilots and eight engineers, all of them trained and licensed. As part of the contract, Falcon Aviation constructed a new hangar to house its Leonardo AW169 helicopter fleet for this project. These were ordered at the Dubai Air Show last year, for delivery this year, so Falcon Aviation has spent 2018 building up to service start. Just prior to MEBAA Capt. Raman Oberoi was in Italy to discuss the project with Leonardo Customer support and also to discuss the possibilities of adding more helicopters in the future.
Pilatus PC-24 will be 12th aircraft type in Falcon Aviation – arriving September 2019
With Falcon Aviation’s first Pilatus PC-24 aircraft arriving next September, it is finalizing the paint scheme and the interiors. The PC-24 will be its 12th aircraft type, and will be used for charter operations. Introducing new variants presents challenges to Falcon Aviation, but on the other hand it is excited about this new arrival. “It will fit efficiently in the 1,800 nm to 2,000 nm range sector – so it’s really a new space for us. We will be gearing up with tooling and spares to support its maintenance,” Captain Raman Oberoi said.
Supporting young engineering talent
In September, Falcon Aviation was pleased to partner with the University of South Wales’ new Dubai University, set up to offer bachelor’s degree in aircraft maintenance. Falcon Aviation is contributing by offering on the job training in a Part 145 organization for these students during third year of their course. “This is a great initiative for students to train in the modern global aviation hub of Dubai and we were happy to be among the first companies to get involved,” Captain Raman Oberoi concluded.