Archives

All posts for the month January, 2020

HAI Heli-Expo 2020

PRESS RELEASE – Anaheim – 28 January 2020

Airbus Helicopters and Shell Aircraft have been working closely in order to put the H160 into service for offshore transportation.

Shell seeks opportunity for early introduction to service of the H160. Having worked closely with Airbus over the last year to understand the design and manufacturing philosophy behind the H160, Shell Aircraft believes this innovative helicopter offers a potential step change in safety and operational capability. To benefit from those new capabilities at the earliest opportunity, we are remaining fully engaged with Airbus through its final certification stages and looking for opportunities to achieve an accelerated introduction to offshore service,” said Tony Cramp, VP Aircraft, Shell.

“We are honoured that Shell Aircraft wants to be the first to introduce the H160 into service for offshore transportation,” said Bruno Even, Airbus Helicopters CEO. “The H160 integrates Airbus Helicopters’ latest technological innovations that introduce breakthrough safety features with Helionix’s accrued pilot assistance and automated features as well as flight envelop protection. The aircraft’s compact size will be an added advantage to landing on oil platforms,” he added.

H160 was not just designed with passengers and pilots in mind. Operators will appreciate its competiveness thanks to its increased fuel efficiency and customer-centric simplified maintenance eco-system: equipment accessibility has been facilitated by the helicopter’s optimised architecture, the maintenance plan was thoroughly verified during the Operator Zero campaigns, and it is delivered with intuitive 3D maintenance documentation. The H160 is due to enter into service in 2020.

HAI Heli-Expo 2020

PRESS RELEASE – Anaheim, 28 January 2020

Up to +190kg of additional payload coming from engine power release.

Airbus Helicopters has announced a major performance increase on the H125 by making full use of the available power of Safran Helicopter Engines’ Arriel 2D.

The aircraft’s external and internal load lifting capabilities will increase by up to +140 kg, with a large part of it already available at low altitude and low external temperatures, while the hover ceiling OGE will be improved by more than 1,500 ft (up to 12,600 ft). These figures will be further increased when the H125 is equipped with the BLR Fast Fin® tail rotor enhancement and stability system, resulting in a total additional gain of up to +190 kg of external and internal load lifting capabilities and the hover ceiling OGE being improved by +2,300 ft (up to 13,400 ft) compared to the current H125 performance.

This extra power is expected to be certified this summer and will be included as a standard feature on all new-built H125s at no price increase. A retrofit solution will be available for all VEMD- equipped H125s (AS350 B3e) by the end of this year and will only consist of a simple VEMD software upgrade.

The H125 will also provide increased operational simplicity thanks to new options aiming to improve visibility and pilot awareness. All of them are to be showcased on the H125 at Airbus Helicopter’s booth: a more compact and simplified instrument panel that reduces its surface area by 40% and incorporates a Garmin G500H TXI touch screen; a remote FLI solution developed by California-based AKV Inc. which will allow to display the main VEMD engine parameters on a smartphone or a tablet via a Bluetooth connection, while keeping external loads in sight, and two additional upper windows greatly improving upward visibility. Show-goers will also see how the Maximum Pilot View Kit, provided by Swiss Rotors Services, boosts the precision and safety of aerial work operations by considerably increasing the field of view of pilots.

“I am very happy to be presenting these new H125 features, which are the result of a continuous dialogue with our customers” declared Axel Aloccio, Head of the Intermediate Single Programme. “The extra power offered by the H125 raises the bar within the single engine helicopter market to reach levels never attained up to now by such platforms and confirms the superiority of the H125 in terms of payload and value for money. And our new options for the aerial work market segment will not only simplify our customer’s daily missions, but more importantly, will further increase the safety of these very demanding operations”.

With more than 4,000 helicopters in service with about 1,500 global customers, the H125 keeps leading the single engine helicopter market thanks to its high performance and multi-mission capacity. In the last 10 years 630 H125s have been delivered for aerial work, resulting in 74% market share. There are currently about 1,600 H125/AS350 helicopters dedicated to aerial work operations, having accumulated more than 10,6 Million flight hours.

HAI Heli-Expo 2020

PRESS RELEASE – Anaheim, 28 January 2020

  • Gulf Helicopters will start operations with the AW189K in the second half of 2020
  • An all new variant of the successful AW189 super medium helicopter, with modern Safran Helicopter Engines Aneto-1K, to offer high performance across geographies and for various roles
  • The AW189 is the most successful model in the super medium category with around 70 in service and over 74,000 flight hours logged in operations worldwide

Leonardo is strengthening its leading position in the super medium helicopter market by announcing the launch customer for the all new AW189K variant.

Gulf Helicopters of Qatar, a major force in the offshore transport sector and an established AW139 and AW189 operator, will introduce the AW189K into service in the second half of 2020.

The AW189 has already demonstrated it is one of the Company’s most successful models through its sales, deliveries and flight hours. Powered by a pair of latest generation Safran Helicopter Engines’ Aneto-1K 2,500 shp class turboshafts, the AW189K offers the market a further option for efficient long range, high endurance and large capacity operations with lower operating costs compared to larger, heavier types.

The AW189K delivers a high level of performance, particularly in hot & high conditions, and is ideally suited to meet customer requirements across a range of geographies, including the Middle East where Leonardo plays a leading role for various missions with its modern product portfolio. Applications which will benefit from the AW189K’s outstanding performance include offshore, SAR, parapublic and fire-fighting, and VIP transport.

The selection of the AW189K by Gulf Helicopters, the launch customer of the AW189 in the offshore market back in 2014, once more provides clear evidence of the customer’s trust with Leonardo’s products to meet its stringent operational requirements. The new model, currently under development with over 350 flight hours logged to date, has shown excellent capabilities in a wide range of demanding weight, altitude and temperature conditions.

Approximately 70 AW189s are in service worldwide today carrying out long range offshore, search and rescue, VIP transport, MEDEVAC, disaster relief and fire-fighting operations and have logged over 74,000 flight hours.

HAI Heli-Expo 2020

PRESS RELEASE – Anaheim, 28 January 2020

  • Leonardo buys 100% of the Swiss helicopter company Kopter from Lynwood
  • Profumo: “We confirm our commitment to strengthening Leonardo’s core business and sustaining our leadership in key areas. With this acquisition we will bring on board innovative skills and technologies that will complement our own and will also contribute to keeping us at the forefront of innovation and competitiveness whilst maintaining our financial solidity.”
  • Closing of the transaction is to take place in the first quarter of 2020

Leonardo has signed a contract with Lynwood (Schweiz) AG to acquire 100% of Kopter Group AG (Kopter).

This move allows Leonardo to further strengthen its worldwide leadership and position in the rotorcraft sector; leveraging innovation, new capabilities and engineering skills which have been developed by the young, agile Swiss Company.

Kopter’s SH09, a new single engine helicopter, is a perfect fit for Leonardo’s state of the art product range offering opportunities for future technological developments. The Swiss company’s competencies will boost future developments towards more disruptive technologies, mission capabilities and performances, including innovative hybrid/electrical propulsion solutions.

This acquisition will replace the planned investment aimed at the development of a new single engine helicopter. Within the Helicopter Division of Leonardo, Kopter will act as an autonomous legal entity and competence centre working in coordination with us. The purchase price, on a cash and debt free basis, consists of a $185 million fixed component plus an earn-out mechanism linked to certain milestones over the life of the programme, starting from 2022. The closing of the transaction is subject to certain conditions and is expected to take place during the first quarter of 2020.

Alessandro Profumo, Leonardo CEO, said: “By this deal we confirm our commitment to strengthening Leonardo’s core business and sustaining our leadership in key areas. With this acquisition we will bring on board innovative skills and technologies that will complement our own and will also contribute to keeping us at the forefront of innovation and competitiveness whilst maintaining our financial solidity.”

Gian Piero Cutillo, Managing Director Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We are proud to welcome this innovative company as an integral part of our world-leading helicopter business. It complements perfectly our existing product portfolio adding a promising rotorcraft that will greatly benefit from our industrial know-how, service and training experience and commercial network.”

Marina Groenberg, CEO of Lynwood, stated: “Lynwood is very proud to have strongly supported the development of Kopter and its SH09 programme over the past 10 years. It is now the right time for Leonardo to take over as they are a perfect match for Kopter at this stage of development.”

Kopter’s CEO Andreas Loewenstein declared: “Kopter is very excited to have won with Leonardo a solid industrial investor. Within Leonardo, we get the support to finalize our development on various fronts while keeping the ability to remain the agile single-engine pioneer that we are.”

For the transaction, Leonardo was assisted by EY and Gatti Pavesi Bianchi. Lynwood was assisted by HoganLovells.

HAI Heli-Expo 2020 – Anaheim, CA

Time is running, the helicopters and expositors are in place … stay tuned on dgualdo.it for the latest Press Releases and new images during the next days.

I-CESR – ITALIAN ROTORS update

Thanks to Salvatore MICHELINI for this image of the AgustaWestland A109S Grand I-CESR operated by Elilombarda on behalf of 118 Regione Campania … approaching Napoli Capodichino Airport, January 2020.

PRESS RELEASE – 24 January 2020

Bristow Group Inc. and Era Group Inc. announced today that they entered into a definitive agreement to combine the two companies.

  • All-stock transaction creates financially stronger, publicly traded company with a significant presence in key geographic regions
  • Combined company will offer broader range of world-class, efficient aviation solutions through enhanced fleet size and diversity, providing better solutions for new and existing oil and gas customers and governmental agencies
  • Expected to achieve pro forma annual revenues of approximately $1.5 billion and run-rate adjusted EBITDA of approximately $240 million, including at least $35 million in annual cost synergies
  • The combined company will maintain a strong balance sheet with robust free cash flow to facilitate continued deleveraging and returns to shareholders

HOUSTON, January 23, 2020 – Bristow Group Inc. (“Bristow”) and Era Group Inc. (NYSE:ERA) (“Era”) announced today that they entered into a definitive agreement to combine the two companies in an all-stock transaction, creating a financially stronger company with enhanced size and diversification.

The combined company, which will be named Bristow, will strengthen its global leadership position with significant operations throughout the Americas, Nigeria, Norway, the United Kingdom and Australia for offshore aviation transportation and search and rescue solutions. The new organization will offer a broader range of world-class, efficient solutions through enhanced fleet size and diversity, continuing to invest in new technology and safety features to meet the evolving needs of new and existing oil and gas customers and governmental agencies. 

“We believe this merger will create substantial value for the stakeholders of both companies,” said Chris Bradshaw, President and CEO of Era. “The identified cost synergies are significant and, combined with the strong pro forma balance sheet and absence of capital commitments, support robust free cash flow generation. This merger achieves more efficient absorption of the significant fixed costs required to run an air carrier and better positions the combined company to manage industry challenges.” 

“Bristow and Era share complementary cultures built on an unwavering commitment to safety and quality through experienced, well-trained trained pilots, mechanics, engineers and support staff,” said L. Don Miller, President and CEO of Bristow. “Merging these two companies will further build on that culture to create an even stronger, more integrated industry leader.”

Highly Compelling Strategic RationaleEnhances Global Leadership with Significant Presence in Key Geographic Regions and End-Markets:

  • Significant operations throughout the Americas, Nigeria, Norway, the United Kingdom and Australia
  • Global leader in offshore oil and gas transportation, search and rescue and aircraft support services to government and civil organizations, with significant revenues and cash flow generated from government services contracts

Increases Fleet Size and Diversity:

  • Combined fleet of more than 300 of the industry’s most modern aircraft with the latest generation of technology and safety features
  • Creates the world’s largest operator of S92, AW189 and AW139 model helicopters
  • Combined fleet will be predominantly owned (>80%), with attractive lease rates on the balance of the fleet

Creates Financially Stronger Company: 

  • Expected to achieve pro forma annual revenues of approximately $1.5 billion and run-rate adjusted EBITDA of approximately $240 million
  • Substantial and highly achievable cost synergies with an annualized saving of at least $35 million through the elimination of redundant corporate expenses and the realization of enhanced operational efficiencies
  • Maintains a strong balance sheet (~2.5x net leverage), supported by a large combined cash balance (over $250 million expected at closing)
  • $112.5 million upsized ABL facility, with a robust free cash flow profile to facilitate continued deleveraging and returns to shareholders

Governance and Management 

Following completion of the transaction, the combined company will be headquartered in Houston, Texas. Chris Bradshaw, President and CEO of Era, will become President and CEO of the combined company. The senior management team will be named at a future date. 

The combined company will have a nine-member Board of Directors, including seven members from Bristow and two members from Era, including the CEO. The Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors will be appointed by Bristow.

Transaction Structure

The transaction will be structured as a reverse triangular merger whereby Era will issue shares to Bristow stockholders. Era (NYSE:ERA) shares will continue to trade on the NYSE.
Under the terms of the agreement, which was unanimously approved by the Board of Directors of both companies, Bristow shareholders would own 77% of the equity of the new company and Era shareholders would own 23%. 

The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2020, following receipt of required regulatory approvals and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, including approval by Bristow’s and Era’s stockholders. The merger is intended to qualify as a tax-free reorganization for U.S. federal income tax purposes. 

Share Repurchase Plan

Era also announced today that, in connection with entry into the merger agreement, its Board of Directors has authorized a special stock repurchase program that would allow for the purchase of up to $10 million of its common stock from time to time and subject to market conditions on the open market or in privately negotiated transactions. The special repurchase program will commence as soon as practicable and will end upon the mailing of the joint proxy statement/prospectus for the merger. Era also noted that it intends to provide the market with periodic updates of the results of the repurchase program. Era’s previously announced repurchase program will be suspended until the closing of the merger.

PRESS RELEASE – 12 December 2019, Bordes.

Safran Helicopter Engines has received EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) Type Certification for its Aneto-1K engine, as fitted to the Leonardo AW189K.

Intended for super-medium and heavy helicopters, the Aneto family produces between 2,500 and 3,000 shp. The 1K is rated at 2,500 shp and its first flight in the AW189K took place in March 2017. Christian Caneilles, VP Heavy Helicopter Engines Program, said: “Certification represents a major milestone for the Aneto program, which will deliver best-in-class solutions for super medium and heavy helicopters. It reflects the excellent performance demonstrated by the engine during its development phase. After an intensive and rigorous test campaign of more than 5,000 hours, on the ground and in-flight, the Aneto-1K is now ready to support AW189K entry-into-service.” The Aneto family offers significant benefits. Thanks to an exceptional power-to-volume ratio, it delivers 25% more thermal power (over existing similarly-rated engines), resulting in increased mission capabilities. This will be especially useful in demanding roles such as offshore transport, search and rescue, fire-fighting, law enforcement or military transport, where increased “hot and high” power margins and solid performance in the transitory regime must be assured. The Aneto delivers increased reliability and safety. Maintenance is optimized with fewer scheduled tasks and longer service intervals. Users will also benefit from connected features like health monitoring (predictive maintenance) and full compatibility with BOOST, Safran’s new online engine configuration and maintenance management service.

PRESS RELEASE – Marignane, 21 January 2020

Airbus Helicopters will be showcasing its civil range of helicopters at Heli-Expo 2020, which runs from 28-30 January at the Anaheim Convention Center in California.

Centre-stage on booth 3432 will be an H125, an ACH130 Aston Martin Edition, and an H175. The H125 will be displayed with the company’s latest improvements destined to better serve aerial work operations. Following the success of Airbus Corporate Helicopters (ACH) since its launch in 2017 as the dedicated Private & Business Aviation helicopter platform, particularly with the ACH145 and ACH160, Airbus has renewed its offer for the ACH130 by partnering with Aston Martin, the epitome of automotive art. The H175 on the booth will be displayed in an offshore transportation configuration. In addition, an H160 immersive experience will highlight the helicopter’s breakthrough innovations in three of its major missions – offshore transportation, private and business aviation, and emergency medical services, as well as its digital support concept.

“Customer centricity is the focus of our display at Heli-Expo this year, as it is for our operations on a daily basis,” said Bruno Even, Airbus Helicopters CEO. “The continuous product improvements and service enhancements being implemented on our wide range of aircraft are intended to provide value to our customers and to facilitate the varying missions of our helicopters all over the world.”

Committed to accompanying customers long after an aircraft is first delivered, Airbus will present its latest selection of support and service enhancements at the HCare corner, where visitors can learn more about the new online customer portal, digital services, analytics, training, and HCare global contracts. These offers, among others, enable customers to increase availability and mission success, optimise their costs, lower the maintenance burden, enhance safety and sustain the value of their assets.

In addition, the Airbus Helicopters static display, adjacent to the booth, will feature an AS332 from Heli Austria in a firefighting configuration, an H125 from Brainerd Helicopters in an aerial work configuration and an H125 from LAPD in a law enforcement configuration, an H145 from San Diego Gas & Electric, and last but not least, the Vahana demonstrator, having just completed its flight test campaign.  On the flight line at Heli-Expo, customers can experience a demo in an H125 equipped with the new Garmin TXi TM avionics, an H135, and an ACH130 with a bespoke interior.

Stay tuned for updates by following us on Twitter: @AirbusHeli@AirbusHeli_usa@AirbusPress, Instagram @airbus_helicopters and Facebook @AirbusHelicopters@AirbusHelicoptersInc. Showgoers can also download the Airbus Press news app available for Android and Apple devices to keep up with all of the news during the show.

Don’t miss the Airbus booth 3432 in Hall B.

@AirbusHeli  #HaiExpo20 

The Global Helicopter Industry is about to exbit and meet at HAI Heli-Expo 2020 in Anaheim, CA. DGUALDO.IT will follow the exposition with Media Releases, images and Helicopter related NEWS.