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Airbus in Singapore

Airbus’ relationship with Singapore dates back to 1975 when the company established a liaison office in the country. As Singapore developed into one of the world’s leading aviation hubs in the years since, Airbus reinforced its presence in the country with cutting-edge products and services.

Today, all of Airbus’ business lines can be found in the Southeast Asia city-state. In addition, the company has developed a strong local presence primarily focussed around high value services.

The company’s presence in Singapore brings multiple direct benefits to the local economy, with the value of the Airbus sourcing and activities in the country reaching almost SGD 1 billion per year.

All told, Airbus employs more than 700 staff locally, many in highly skilled positions.

Commercial Aircraft

Featuring a special “10,000th Airbus” logo on its livery, Singapore Airlines’ new A350-900 jetliner is the 10,000 aircraft delivered to Airbus’ global customer base

As of early 2018, Airbus had sold more than 600 civil passenger aircraft to airlines and leasing companies in Singapore, making the country one of Airbus’ top five markets in the region. Customers include Singapore Airlines and its subsidiaries Scoot and Silkair, as well as leading Asian lessor BOC Aviation. Together they have placed orders across the Airbus commercial aircraft product line, including the flagship A380 double deck jetliner, the popular and versatile A330 widebody, the all-new long-haul A350 XWB and the best-selling single-aisle A320 Family.

Singapore Airlines first became an Airbus customer in May 1979 with an order for the A300B4, the original widebody twinjet aircraft. Since then, the airline has placed orders for more than 140 widebody aircraft from the company. The carrier was the launch customer for the A380 following the aircraft’s entry into service in 2007, and ten years later, Singapore Airlines received the first of its jetliners with an upgraded and improved cabin product that elevates the passenger experience to new heights.

The carrier operates 19 A380s (as of early 2018), with another four on order, on routes to key points in Europe, the US and selected destinations in the Asia-Pacific region.

New Singapore Airlines A380 takes to the skies
 

Singapore Airlines has taken delivery of the first of five new A380 aircraft scheduled to join the carrier’s fleet over the coming year, at a special ceremony hosted by Airbus in Toulouse. The aircraft delivered today is the first in the airline’s fleet to feature its recently launched on-board cabin products and innovations. Read less Read more

In January 2009, Singapore Airlines added the popular A330-300 to its fleet under lease agreements. As of early 2018, the airline has 22 A330s in service, operating across the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East.

Singapore Airlines has ordered 67 A350 aircraft (as of early 2018), which have become the backbone of its widebody fleet. The carrier’s first A350-900 entered service in 2016, and as of early 2018 it has 20 of the type operating on long-haul services to Europe and Africa, as well as key destinations in the Asia-Pacific region. In 2018, the airline will also receive seven ultra-long range A350s with a flying capability of up to 20 hours, allowing the carrier to re-launch the world’s longest non-stop passenger services, linking Singapore to points in the US.

A320 Family jetliners are the product of choice for both full-service and low-cost carriers, operated by Silkair, Scoot and Jetstar Asia.

In 2014, low-cost carrier Tigerair – which later merged with Scoot – ordered 39 A320neo aircraft to support its future growth plans. The first aircraft are due to arrive later in 2018.

Singapore-based lessor BOC Aviation placed its first order with Airbus in 1996 with a deal for 12 aircraft from the A320 Family. Since then, the company has become a major Airbus customer with orders as of early 2018 for 324 aircraft from both the A330 and A320 Families.

 

Helicopters

Airbus has supplied various models of rotorcraft to the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF), including large transport Super Pumas. In 2016, Singapore’s defence ministry signalled its confidence in the H225M Super Puma with a new order to meet its future medium lift requirements.

Singapore-based Airbus Helicopters Southeast Asia is responsible for sales and customer support activities for the entire helicopter product line in 15 territories in the region. Its activities include new completions and deliveries, maintenance and inspection, modification and retrofit, sale of spares, and training courses for technicians and pilots.

Defence

In 2014, Singapore announced an order for the new-generation A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) to conduct air-to-air refuelling, as well as undertake civil transport and disaster relief missions. Deliveries of the MRTT will begin in 2018.

Space

The company’s success in Singapore also extends to space applications. Airbus provided the first telecommunications satellite to Singtel, and this was launched in 1998. Airbus also helped Singapore become the global leader in the near equatorial domain and is proud to have contributed to Singapore’s recent successes via the TeLEOS-1 national programme with key equipment and leading-edge test campaigns. Building on this successful collaboration, Airbus is actively participating in the upcoming TeLEOS-2 satellite.

Airbus DS Geo, part of the company’s space division, focuses on satellite imagery distribution throughout Asia. Recognised as a world leader in geo-information, the team in Singapore provides access for Asian institutions and partners to the Pléiades, SPOT, TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X satellites and constellations.

 

Satellite Image Kazeosat 1 Singapore
 

Local partners

Beyond its commercial achievements, Airbus has established a dominant presence in Singapore with several locally incorporated companies that focus on regional customer support, maintenance and training operations.

Airbus Asia Training Centre, a joint venture owned 55 percent by Airbus and 45 percent by Singapore Airlines, began operations at the Seletar Aerospace Park in April 2016 and offers training courses for all in-production Airbus aircraft. When fully operational later in 2018 with eight full-flight simulators, it will be the largest Airbus-operated flight crew training facility in the world.

Also located within the Seletar Aerospace Park are Airbus Services Asia Pacific, which manages the company’s customer support and customer service activities for operators in the region, and Satair Airbus Singapore Centre, the primary spare parts hub for Airbus aircraft with operators in the Asia-Pacific region.

In 2016, Airbus and SIA Engineering Company (SIAEC) incorporated a new joint venture maintenance and overhaul unit, Heavy Maintenance Singapore Services (HMS Services). SIAEC holds a 65 percent equity stake in HMS Services, with Airbus holding the remaining 35 percent. This new company has begun providing consultancy services to SIAEC, and is expected to start A380 heavy maintenance in the third quarter of 2018.

Airbus sourcing activities are growing in Singapore with the procurement of aircraft services, cabin and engine parts, systems and equipment through various suppliers. They include SIA Engineering Company, ST Engineering and the local units of Honeywell, Rolls-Royce, Safran, Thales and United Technologies.

The company also has an important global partnership with ST Aerospace, a subsidiary of Singapore-listed ST Engineering, for the passenger-to-freighter conversion of Airbus A330 and A320 Family aircraft. ST Aerospace leads the marketing of the conversion programmes worldwide, with the actual conversion work carried out at various ST Aerospace facilities and at an jointly owned subsidiary EFW in Germany. EFW delivered the first converted A330-300 freighter in December 2017.

Innovation

Airbus has also identified Singapore as a strategic partner for advanced research and innovation initiatives. These include programmes in collaboration with the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore University of Technology and Design, as well as government agencies such as the Economic Development Board and A*Star.

Airbus has two major projects currently underway in Singapore. The first is Skyways, which is a project to develop a safe and economically viable unmanned aerial parcel delivery system for use in urban environments. The project was launched in Singapore in February 2016 in association with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and NUS, and SingPost became a logistics partner in 2017.

By working together with its Singapore partners, Airbus aims to ensure that the solutions developed will address the future logistics needs of cities around the world. The project is now at an advanced stage and trials involving the prototype drone are set to begin in NUS in 2018.

The second is the Hangar of the Future, which is focussed on harnessing the latest digital technologies and autonomous inspection systems to reboot the maintenance, repair and overhaul business, significantly increasing operational efficiency for airlines. This project was launched in 2016 in association with Temasek Polytechnic, and several Singapore start-ups. The project is co-funded by Airbus and the Economic Development Board, and trials are ongoing at a test-bed hangar in the Temasek Polytechnic.

A key element in the project is the huge amounts of data generated by the aircraft in service, which will be collected and analysed via Airbus’ open data platform, Skywise. This will enable MROs to predict the required maintenance tasks for a given aircraft, helping to optimise planning and maintenance task execution and minimising aircraft on-ground time. 

Hangar Of The Future Infographic
 

Singapore's future

Airbus and Singapore have been strategic partners for more than 40 years, and this has been a highly successful relationship. Airbus plans to develop further its presence here in the years to come.

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