ATR Flies Against The Jet stream
The Growth of regional air traffic in many parts of the world last year, was of particular benefit to the Franco-Italian aircraft manufacturer ,Avions Transport Regional (ATR) which logged a record year with a turnover of US $ 1,63 –billion, an increase of 13% compared with 2012,and delivered 74 new aircraft, an increase of 16%.
Alongside these results were sales of a total of 195 aircraft (89 firm orders and 106 options) from 14 clients, giving ATR a backlog of 221 firm aircraft orders as of December 31, 2013. The value of the backlog aircraft is estimated at $5, 3-billion and represents nearly three years of production allowing ATR to continue increasing its planned delivery rate for the forthcoming years.
The firm orders represent an increase of 20% compared with orders from the previous year. 2013 also confirmed the growing interest of leasing companies in ATR.In 2013 ATR also received confidence renewal from some ten customers over the five continents. For the past five years, ATR has accounted for nearly 85% of sales of all aircraft under 90 seats in the regions of Latin America and the fastest-growing countries in Southeast Asia, confirming their attractiveness to regional companies for developing their short-haul networks.
In recent years ATRs have established a clear position as the best selling aircraft with under 90 seats among all regional aircraft (35% of total sales since 2010).These sales have helped position the ATR 600 Series as the new benchmark for regional aviation thanks to their cutting edge technology, avant-garde comfort and economical and ecological performance.
The 74 deliveries made in 2013 represent not only a new annual record, but also highlight the dramatic increase in the rate of deliveries, responding to the strong demand for ATRs worldwide.
The deliveries also account for nearly half of all new aircraft with up to 90 seats delivered during 2013.To date, over 130 ATRs from the-600 series are already in operations. Since the program me began in 1981,ATR has received net orders of 1328 aircraft ( 443 ATR 42s and 885 ATR 72s) .
As of year-end 2013 ,ATR had delivered a total of 1107 aircraft ( 429 ATR 42s and 678 ATR 72s). In 2013,ATR confirmed the signing of numerous Global Maintenance Agreements (GMAs) .Contracts of this type were signed with fifteen airlines worldwide, covering a total of 164 aircraft, for a total of US$ 330-million.
To date, approximately 30% of ATRs in operation worldwide are covered by GMAs between the airlines and ATR. Filippo Bagnato, chief executive office of ATR, said he was very satisfied “with the company’s new record results. Once again, that year we continued to expand our presence worldwide and consolidate the attractiveness of our products and our services to some 190 operating companies.
“We are very proud to have the largest portfolio of operators out of all the manufacturers of regional aircraft.” ATR and Royal Air Maroc Sign A Global Maintenance Agreement. The European manufacturer of turboprop airliners, ATR, and the national Moroccan airline, Royal Air Maroc, have signed a Global Maintenance Agreement (GMA) for the airlines new fleet of ATR-600 aircraft. Signed for an initial period of four years, the contract covers the four ATR 72-600s already owned by the airline.
Having received its first ATR 72-600 in August 2011, Royal Air Maroc was the first airline in the world to operate the aircraft. As set out in this GMA contract, ATR will manage all aspects of maintenance and repair for some equipment for the airlines ATR-600 fleet. This equipment includes LRUs and propeller blades. By signing this contract,
ATR guarantees Royal Air Maroc the permanent availability of these spare parts from its logistics centre in Paris. The airline will also use ATR exclusively for all of its maintenance procedures, thus benefiting from the manufacturers expertise.
This will have a positive impact on maintenance costs per flight hour. Nearly 300 ATR airliners currently in operation are covered by GMA with ATR.This represents nearly a third of ATRs total operational fleet.
With manufactures striving to come with new innovation and creativity, air transport is growing drastically with more investors venturing into the air travel business. With new aircraft being manufactured for domestic and regional flights many airlines are diversifying their services by opening new routes to destinations where there are no commercial flights.
Many manufacturers like Bombardier,ATR,Boeing,Airbus,Beech craft and Hawker among many others are manufacturing aircraft which are reliable, efficient and cost effective for regional and domestic flights with a capacity of more than 90 seats.
With stiff competition among the manufacturers, air travel will become more affordable and quicker for both private and scheduled flights. Anthony A Juma is the Editor and Director Commercial and Flights Operations at Wings Over Africa Aviation Limited.