Sikorsky beefs up chopper support
Connecticut-based helicopter maker Sikorsky is expanding its helicopter service support in Thailand as part of an effort to increase its presence in Asia-Pacific.
The firm is doing so by strengthening its long-standing partnership with Thai Aviation Services (TAS), the transport service provider that primarily facilitates petroleum activities off the coast of Thailand and along the territorial waters of Cambodia and Malaysia.
The move turns TAS into a Sikorsky-designated provider of maintenance, repairs and overhaul for Sikorsky rotorcraft, specifically the popular S-92 and S-76 models.
TAS will also have quick access to Sikorsky logistics and spare parts inventory for operators while providing advanced service capabilities.
TAS is due to become the first Sikorsky Customer Support Centre in Thailand by the end of this year, Christophe Nurit, Sikorsky's regional sales executive for Asia, said yesterday.
The Thai centre will be Sikorsky's seventh in the Asia-Pacific region, adding to its growing global service support network that now numbers 20.
Sikorsky, part of Maryland-based Lockheed Martin Co, is not a shareholder in TAS, nor will TAS's designation as a Sikorsky centre involve equity participation in the Thai company.
TAS operates helicopter flights from U-tapao airport, Songkhla naval base and Nakhon Si Thammarat airport, where TAS's own core service base is located.
TAS, has been in existence for 27 years, operating only Sikorsky helicopters. The company recently renewed its fleet of commercial helicopters with five S-76D medium lift and two S-92 heavy lift aircraft.
The new fleet replaced six older model S-76 and two S-92 helicopters previously operated by TAS.
Acquisition of the new helicopters via a major aircraft leasing company's order book began in the third quarter of last year and will be completed later in 2017.