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P&WC is launching six new aftermarket services at HAI Heli-Expo 2018, aimed at a helicopter industry that is “structuring itself to adapt to permanent cost reductions,” according to P&WC’s Nicolas Chabée.
“Costs are becoming more than ever a key parameter for operators,” said Chabée, who was recently named VP of sales and marketing for helicopter engines. With that in mind, P&WC is striving to offer operators aftermarket solutions that deliver more value over “the total life cycle of engine utilization,” he said.
Two of these offerings are expansions of the company’s cost-guarantee engine maintenance programs. P&WC is launching a Small Fleet Pay-per-Hour (PpH) solution that will provide many of the customized benefits associated with the company’s Fleet Management Program to smaller operators with less than five helicopters. At the same time, the Small Fleet PpH program is designed to “make it easy” for operators, with a streamlined contract and transferability of benefits.
“There was a niche that we felt needed a program,” said Chabée, noting that small operators represent the majority of the commercial helicopter fleet. The PW206, PW207, and PT6C engine families will be the first to be covered under the Small Fleet PpH program.
Meanwhile, P&WC is also expanding its Eagle Service Plan (ESP) program for PW206/207 operators to encompass a premium level, Platinum, which encompasses routine periodic inspections of fuel nozzles, environmental repair at overhaul, and P&WC technical publications. Chabée said that this offering is geared toward customers who operate in particularly harsh environmental conditions, such as emergency medical services operators who routinely land on dusty scene calls.
P&WC is also introducing a certified pre-owned engine program for three of its most popular helicopter engine models: the PT6C-67C, PW206C, and PW207C with plans to roll out to other turboshaft engines in the future. Similar to the certified pre-owned programs that are popular for high-end used cars, the program is initially being launched in collaboration with the global helicopter dealer Rotortrade. Once aircraft dealers certify a pre-owned engine through P&WC, the manufacturer will offer a 500-hour/one-year engine warranty for that engine, as well as six months of complimentary tech pubs, plus a credit that can be applied to an ESP program.
“The idea is to increase the asset’s value to ease re-sale,” Chabée said, explaining that the program is being launched to coincide with an expected wave of lease returns: “These aircraft have been operated for three, four, five years, and are now due for their second cycle.” For those aircraft that are sold upon return, the certified pre-owned engine program will provide new owners with “reassurance and coverage . . . backed by the OEM,” he said.
Two of P&WC’s new service offerings are targeted to specific sectors. Notably, the company is leveraging its new defense and security organization to offer tailored solutions to operators engaged in public safety missions, including firefighting, search-and-rescue, and law enforcement. “What we really want to do is bring options and flexible solutions [for] the defense and security sector,” said Chabée. “They have particular needs. They are not commercial operators, they are government, so the processes, tendering aspects, all of that needs to adapt.”
P&WC is also now offering comprehensive service packages to customers engaged in VVIP and head of state transport, “where there’s no excuse for not having a helicopter ready,” Chabée said. These customized packages of spare parts and engineering services will include deployment of P&WC Mobile Repair Team technicians to customers’ premises for routine onsite maintenance, and to familiarize customers’ technicians with maintenance procedures. Chabée said the company expects to see particular demand for this offering in Africa.
Finally, P&WC is piloting an enhanced line replaceable unit (LRU) availability program, which will allow for provisioning of assets on premise with customers, as well as establish asset pools in key geographic locations for the shared benefit of operators. “The idea is to always have parts ready to support your operations,” Chabée said.
Bjorn Stickling, director of diagnostics, prognostics and engine health management for P&WC, noted that many of these new services are being supported by the company’s emphasis on data analytics, which have allowed it to provide customers with the availability gains and operating cost guarantees that can be critical in a competitive market.
“A lot of what we’ve been doing over the years [is] about a more planned environment, and about understanding cost controls through the entire life cycle of the engine,” he said. “All that data allows us to manage the ESP programs more effectively with the operator.”