June 9, 2011 By Carey Fredericks
June 9, 2011, Singapore - Bell Helicopter and Cessna Aircraft Company broke ground today on a new facility dedicated to service and support for customers in the Asia-Pacific region.
The facility is expected to be complete in the second quarter of 2012 and when fully operational, the facility will employ approximately 90 technicians and office workers.
"Cessna and Bell Helicopter remain committed to transforming the model for commercial aviation aircraft support; finding innovative ways of supporting our customers around the world and leading the way in new and emerging markets," said Donald Brosious, Vice President of Finance, Customer Support and Service for Bell Helicopter. "Adding this new service center is one way we are demonstrating that commitment to our customers throughout Asia-Pacific."
The new facility in Singapore will replace and augment the existing Bell Helicopter Supply Center and strengthen the company's sales presence in Asia-Pacific, as well as add parts distribution and maintenance capabilities for Cessna operators in the region. Encompassing more than 25,700 square meters (84,300 square feet), the facility includes more than 48,700 square meters (160,000 square feet) of hangar, office, and storage and maintenance space.
"The Seletar site represents Bell Helicopter's continued focus on expanding the sales and marketing reach of the Asia Pacific region," said Sameer Rehman, Managing Director of Commercial Business for Asia Pacific for Bell Helicopter. "This expanded presence strengthens our ability to provide rapid and comprehensive response to inquiries and enhances the entire Bell Helicopter ownership experience for our Asia Pacific customers and will further help to localize our efforts."
Serving as the companies' regional sales and service center for Asia-Pacific, the expansion will include full service centers for both Bell Helicopter and Cessna and will provide a full range of capability including aircraft sales, technical support, spare parts distribution, maintenance, overhaul, refurbishment, completions and customizing, as well as Bell Helicopter training for both maintenance and flight training.
"Leveraging shared resources across Textron, Cessna and Bell Helicopter allows us to provide our customers with enhanced services that are not only cost-competitive, but add value to their missions," said Stan Younger, vice president of Service Facilities for Cessna Aircraft Company. "This ideal location further enhances our combined ability to support the installed fleet and new aircraft deliveries in the region."
"We are extremely pleased that both Bell Helicopter and Cessna have chosen Singapore for their regional MRO operations. We warmly welcome both companies as our key tenants in Seletar Aerospace Park. Their presence adds depth and diversity to Singapore’s MRO industry," said Mr Lim Kok Kiang, Executive Director of Transport Engineering, Singapore Economic Development Board. "Going forward, we anticipate even more aerospace companies establishing their presence in Singapore to service the rapidly growing Asia market."
This service expansion is one of many in which the two companies have partnered. In the past year, Bell Helicopter and Cessna have collaborated on regional parts distribution centers, maintenance centers and service facilities in Amsterdam, Netherlands; Prague, Czech Republic and Valencia, Spain. Additional collaborations are expected to be announced later this year.
"We are delighted Bell Helicopter and Cessna Aircraft Company have selected Singapore's Seletar Aerospace Park (SAP) to anchor their Asia-Pacific regional sales and service centre. The Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) campus will not only grow our base of business jet MRO at SAP, it also forms the nucleus of the helicopter cluster, and enhances the range of MRO capabilities and value proposition that Singapore and SAP have to offer, said Mr Leow Thiam Seng, Director of Aerospace, Marine and CleanTech Cluster, JTC. "This is an important milestone for us, as their combined presence in SAP will strengthen the park's vision of becoming an integrated aerospace park."
Bell Helicopter and Cessna were recently voted No. 1 in customer support among business aviation and helicopter manufacturers by the readers of Professional Pilot magazine in one of the industry’s top annual surveys.
"Building on the existing expertise in completions, customizations, upgrades, and maintenance, repair and overhaul services, Bell Helicopter and Cessna can now provide our customers in Asia-Pacific one-stop for all their support and service needs," said Brosious.