Eurocopter, Airbus military tout sales

Feb. 16, 2012 at 1:58 PM
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MARIGNANE, France, Feb. 16 (UPI) -- It has been a boon week for some of Europe's manufacturers of rotor and fixed-wing aircraft for the military and civilian markets.

Eurocopter, the French-German-Spanish consortium, reports it did well at the Heli-Expo in Dallas, where it rolled out its new EC130 T2 and garnered seven bookings for a total of 105 of the helicopters.

Customers who placed bookings were from Maverick Helicopters, Papillon Helicopters, Blue Hawaiian, Scandinavian Helicopter Group, Air Commander, Europavia and Enloe Flightcare.

Eurocopter said the EC130 T2 is suitable for missions such as emergency medical airlift, aerial tourism and utility work.

Other bookings received during the exhibition covered the spectrum of Eurocopter products.

Contracts and bookings announced included the purchase of 16 EC225 twin-engine helicopters by the Milestone Aviation Group for use in the oil and gas industry; an order for 10 EC175s by Noordzee Helikopters Vlaanderen of Belgium.

The company and its subsidiaries delivered eight new helicopters to North American customers during the show.

Among customers of its EC135s and EC145s are the Broward County Sheriff's Office in Florida, Scandinavian Air Ambulance, and Utah Health Care's AirMed.

"The overall success of Eurocopter at Heli-Expo 2012 demonstrates the global market's continuing recovery," said Eurocopter President and Chief Executive Officer Lutz Bertling.

"The high level of orders confirms the value of Eurocopter's strategy to invest, innovate and improve to optimize customer value. As we celebrate our 20th anniversary, Eurocopter's product line is well-positioned to meet customer expectations for helicopter efficiency, performance and safety.

"We are poised to enter the next 20 years with the same focus and determination to continue our industry leadership," he said.

Eurocopter is a division of EADS. Last year it had orders for 457 aircraft.

Airbus Military this week had an announcement of its own. It signed an agreement at the Singapore Air Show with PT Dirgantara Indonesia to supply nine of its C295 military transport planes to the Indonesian Defense Ministry.

Deliveries of the aircraft, which will be flown by the country's air force, will begin next year and will continue until mid-2014.

"This is a proud moment for our country as well as for the Indonesian aerospace industry," said Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro. "The C295 provides the ideal capacity to respond to Indonesia´s current and future military and humanitarian transport needs and does so very cost-efficiently, with full participation of the Indonesian aerospace industry, creating high-skilled jobs and technology transfer."

The agreement includes collaboration between PT DI and Airbus Military for the C295 program, including the manufacturing of the tail empennage, rear fuselage and fuselage panels in Indonesia.

Development of computer-based training programs for the aircraft, establishing a service center and a final assembly line in Indonesia is also provided for under the arrangement.

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