Home' Asian Aviation : AAV_May2012 Contents 24 AsianAviation | MAY 2012
The tremendous growth in the Asian airline and
aerospace industries is a huge opportunity
for the region - and a challenge. Each aircraft
will require parts, maintenance and support
when things go wrong.
On top of this, the region s aerospace industry is
also growing. Asia is becoming a major supplier to
the major manufacturers, and even a manufacturing
base in its own right. "The UAE, China, India and
Malaysia are emerging as new MRO or Manufacturing
Clusters," notes Sachin Shah, process and
manufacturing leader at Deloitte consulting in SEA.
The rise of China as a manufacturing centre for
aerospace is and will be a key dynamic. "Engine OEMs
are using Chinese Manufacturing for low technology
but high volume manufacturing," notes Shah.
New aircraft programmes such as the Airbus A350
and Boeing 787 "will shape the future of aircraft
logistics and sourcing," says Shah, while there is
also an ongoing consolidation among tier 3 and tier
4 suppliers. "Make to print component manufacturers
and materials and process suppliers are merging via
consolidation and vertical integration," he adds.
While a number of Asian locations have built
up positions as aerospace logistics hubs, few can
match Singapore in this regard. The City State s
connectivity, infrastructure and respect for IP laws,
combined with a focus on the aviation and aerospace
industries all adds up, and logistics companies have
been positioning themselves to cater for this.
For instance, DHL s Singapore Aerospace Hub
was set up in 2007 and expanded by 55% last year
to 70,000 sq ft. "It works 24/7, 365 days a year. The
staff have sector-specific knowledge. It s truly for us
a showcase for aerospace customers," says Richard
Patry, head of engineering & manufacturing Africa &
South Asia Pacific at DHL Global Forwarding.
Kuehne + Nagel has established a ' regional aerospace
hub , namely a warehouse in the ALPS Freeport area
in Singapore, which is dedicated to aerospace. DB
Schenker also has an Aero Hub in Singapore, also
in the ALPS Freeport area. SDV has specialist in-
house teams in Singapore, including the support of
Singapore s Airlines Panasonic IFE systems. It also
supports the tailored support package provided by
Airbus to SIA for 19 A330s and 5 A340-500s.
In short, logistics providers have increasingly been
gearing their services to the specialised needs of
the aviation industry, whether it be airlines, OEMs,
suppliers or the MRO sector. "Aerospace logistics
does not involve traditional freight forwarding. Volumes
are lower, while the attention these customers
demand is more than in most other sectors. Lead time
is critical. Reaction has to measured not in days, but
typically in hours," notes Patry.
"With aerospace - the final customer is the
passenger. You are providing a service, not
something physical. This makes it different to
automobile or computer sectors. The latter are high
volume, high weight, the aerospace industry tends
to be low volume, low weight," notes Erik Goedhart,
senior vice president aerospace at Kuehne + Nagel.
"The big logistics companies have been looking
at how to deal with aerospace. If you mix it with
general cargo it s a nightmare. There are very few
with dedicated aerospace solutions." Kuehne +
Nagel estimates that approximately 9-12% of the
industry s market value is logistics related.
Certainly all this value is pointing towards
dedicated logistics teams for the industry. "We
have one network - we are not mixed with generic
cargo. We have dedicated sectors such as oil and
gas, healthcare etc. Every segment has its own
organisation and budget. You will be dealing with
Logistics companies are investing in the Asian aviation industry, and
believe they can help the region's airlines and aerospace sectors operate
more e ciently and cut costs, writes Colin Baker
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