Sikorsky Aerospace Service signs pact for S-70i Black Hawk
Sept. 14, 2012, Stratford, Conn. - Sikorsky Aerospace Services (SAS) and PZL Mielec – Polish manufacturer of the S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter – announce the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Wojskowe Centralne Biuro Konstrukcyjno – Technologiczne (WCBKT) to explore how WCBKT could supply Ground Support Equipment to sustain a fleet of S-70i helicopters in Poland.
By Carey Fredericks
Any future collaboration will depend in large part on Poland’s Ministry of Defence acquiring the PZL-Mielec-built S-70i helicopter for its armed forces. The MOU is one of three such documents signed this week with Polish companies.
For over 30 years, WCBKT has focused on the development and manufacture of modern equipment for the Polish Army. Under the terms of the MOU, WCBKT will work with Sikorsky to potentially become an approved supplier of Ground Support Equipment (GSE), and potentially also for S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopters operating in Europe.
“WCBKT’s extensive experience in the production of aircraft ground support equipment for military use and their research and development capabilities offers the level of quality products and services we look for in partnering with an international company,” said Frank DiPasquale, SAS Vice President of Sales and Strategic Relationships “Our aftermarket expertise coupled with the synergy of local support companies will provide comprehensive in-country capabilities should Poland’s Ministry of Defence select the S-70i helicopter for their military needs. This MOU aligns with our goal to provide comprehensive support solutions where our customers operate.”
This year, the Polish Ministry of Defence is expected to release a tender for multi-role helicopters followed by a contract award in late 2013. Sikorsky will offer the Polish-built S-70i aircraft, a customizable variant of the BLACK HAWK helicopter flown by militaries in 25 countries.
"This agreement is an important stage in our strategy of the Black Hawk helicopter’s Polonization. It demonstrates our openness for collaboration with other local companies,” said Janusz Zakręcki, President, PZL Mielec.
“The cooperation between WCBKT and Sikorsky will create new opportunities for our company for broader presentation of our products worldwide, everywhere Sikorsky provides its helicopters,” said Artur Kolosowski, President of WCBKT.