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Regional turboprop manufacturer ATR is
optimistic that Virgin Blue s commitment to the
ATR 72 aircra will lead to further sales in the
Australia was previously the "hole in the Asia-
Paci c puzzle" that has now been lled a er a lot
of work over a number of years, says John Moore,
head of sales for the European manufacturer.
ATR currently has only two of its aircra ,
both freighters, operating with Toll Aviation in
Australia. Virgin Blue has committed to take 18
ATR 72s, with the rst four --
-500 versions --
to be delivered this year and the remaining 14 to
be the new ATR 72-600 variant, scheduled for
delivery starting from 2012.
Moore says the manufacturer s lack of
presence in the market and accompanying
unfamiliarity and support infrastructure, was a
strong disadvantage for the manufacturer, but it
has worked to address this weakness, including
establishing an o ce in Sydney, and will look to
build upon this base in the future.
"We see continued opportunities here and
look for ward to building our market presence,"
says Moore. Virgin Blue s ATR s will be supported
from ATR s Singapore o ce.
ATR sees opportunities for the ATR 42 in the
country, with few choices available to replace the
country s ageing 19-30-seaters.
" ere are a number of airlines we are targeting
as potential [customers] in the medium term in
Australia," says Moore. e country s booming
resources sector is also a good prospect, he adds.
Elsewhere in the region, ATR recently entered
the resources market in Papua New Guinea,
where Airlines PNG operates the world s longest
y in- y out service to the Lihir Gold Mine, using
an ATR 72-500. In addition, Australian-owned
Regional Airlines Group recently acquired two
ATR 42-320s for resource operations in PNG.
e wider Asia-Paci c region has always been a
strong market for ATR, accounting for 50 percent
of the company s total sales in the last ve years.
Some 51 percent of deliveries in 2010 went to
the region, which also claims 32 percent of the
manufacturer s 2010 order backlog.
Most recently, Indonesian carrier Wings, a
subsidiary of Lion Air, rmed up previously held
options for 15 ATR 72-500s, which will take its
total eet to 30.
Adventist Aviation Services is one of many
customers of the P-750 to replace repeat orders.
New Zealand manufacturer Pacific Aerospace is
updating its P-750 XSTOL aircra over the next
12 months with a number of new features as global
marketing of the type is yielding positive results.
e single engine P-750 turboprop, which was on
display in the static park at the Avalon show, is available
in various con gurations, including passenger, utility,
skydiving, medevac, sur veillance and crop spraying.
e Hamilton-based manufacturer has sold 74 of the
type around the world, in Africa, Europe, the United
States and the equatorial band -- "anywhere with hot
and high conditions and rugged", says chief executive
o cer Damian Camp.
During the downturn over the last couple of years
the company has been busy demonstrating the type.
e manufacturer recently introduced a wide-tyre
modi cation, primarily for operators in Papua New
Guinea, as well as a Hartzell four-blade propeller
o ering improved performance. It is now working
on developments to increase the aircra s appeal, says
Camp, including the installation of a Garmin 1000
EFIS and adjustable crew seats.
e manufacturer is currently producing one aircra a
month but expects to accelerate to 2.5 per month by the
end of this year, as it increasingly wins repeat business.
Papua New Guinea-based Adventist Aviation
Ser vices took delivery of its second P-750 XSTOL
last June and have ordered another for delivery in the
middle of this year. Fellow PNG operator, Central
Aviation, took delivery of its rst aircra in 2008, put
a second into ser vice in 2009 and will shortly take
delivery of a third.
Global business-aviation organisation Execujet
Aviation Group is expanding its fixed base
operations (FBO) and maintenance activities in
Australia and New Zealand amid encouraging signs
Construction has started on its rst FBO in New
Zealand, at Wellington Airport. e facility, due
for completion in time for the rugby World Cup in
September, will o er FBO ser vices, aircra storage
and light maintenance, says Darren McGoldrick,
managing director Execujet Australasia.
The company will offer its FBO ser vices in
conjunction with Capital Jet Ser vices of Wellington,
alongside aircra management and charter ser vices.
Execujet currently manages a Gulfstream G550
business jet in New Zealand.
The company has also started work on the
expansion of its Melbourne Essendon maintenance
facility, which will add a further 755 square metres
for an FBO with integrated lounge area, o ces,
stores and maintenance workshops. e work is due
for completion in August.
Pacific Aerospace updates
P-750 as orders roll in
Execujet boosts FBO activity
in Australia, New Zealand
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