Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, 4 December 2021 – The Helicopter Company (THC), established by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) as the first and only helicopter services provider licensed to operate commercial flights in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, today announced that it has signed a second purchase agreement with Airbus Helicopters.

The agreement was signed by Raid Ismail, Chairman of the Board of THC and Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters, in the presence of His Excellency Khalid Al Falih, Minister of Investment and His Excellency Franck Riester, Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade and Economic Attractiveness.

The partnership will contribute to the ongoing expansion of THC’s regional fleet ahead of announcing an exciting new journey as a General Aviation champion, with twenty orders of the newly launched five bladed H145 and six ACH160 models. All aircraft feature cutting-edge technologies and biofuel-compatible engines, marking a significant milestone in developing alternatives to conventional aviation fuels and achieving decarbonization of helicopter flights.

Launching its services in 2019, THC was established by PIF as part of its strategy to activate new sectors in Saudi Arabia that support the realisation of Vision 2030 and generate long-term commercial returns, while meeting the growing demand for luxury tourism and air travel services. THC previously signed an agreement to buy 10 Airbus H125 helicopters to increase access to domestic tourism destinations and provide services such as filming and aerial surveying – and is now further expanding its services with the addition of the H145 and H160 to its fleet.

“Our mission is to create a world-class National Aviation Champion and today, by signing this agreement with our trusted partner Airbus, we mark an important milestone in our journey to grow together with the nation in focus to fulfil Saudi Vision 2030. This deal comes as part of THC’s commitment to introduce new services with advanced technology that fulfill market demand and support the development of the Kingdom’s wider aviation sector,” said Raid Ismail, Chairman of the Board of THC.

“We are honored by the trust that THC is placing once again in our products and our teams and I am personally thrilled with this expansion of our partnership”, said Bruno Even, CEO of Airbus Helicopters. “THC will be taking full benefit of Airbus’ latest innovations with the five-bladed H145 and the ACH160, which we are certain will be valuable assets in their portfolio, enabling them to develop operations in the country,” he added.

Commenting on the partnership, Captain Arnaud Martinez, CEO of THC said, “We are extremely proud to sign this deal today with a world-leading aircraft manufacturer like Airbus. This important milestone is indicative of our growth as a business since our inception and of our positive contribution to the delivery of Saudi Arabia’s 2030 Vision in terms of stimulating new sectors. Moreover, it is a commitment to the recently announced goals of the Saudi Green Initiative to not only grow our business and industry, but to do so in a sustainable manner.”

The purchase agreement forms part of THC’s ongoing strategic regional alliances with industry leaders, including a recent partnership with The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC), the developer behind the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism project. The contract for the provision and operation of a twin engine helicopter, crew and maintenance technicians, facilitates TRSDC emergency medical services (EMS) with alternate configuration change capability for passenger utility transport at TRSDC’s site on the west coast of Saudi Arabia.

John Pagano, CEO of TRSDC said, “As we strive to lead the way in creating a smart and sustainable mobility network for our destinations, we are thrilled to witness the growth and expansion of our partner, The Helicopter Company, who are paving the way to a sustainable future for aerospace in Saudi Arabia. It is imperative that the full aviation ecosystem continues to come together to build a resilient, stronger and greener future.”

 

About The Helicopter Company (THC)

The Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) established THC as part of its strategy to activate new sectors in Saudi Arabia that support the realization of Vision 2030 and generate long-term commercial returns. THC is the Kingdom’s first and only commercial helicopter operator and has been operating since mid-2019.

For more information, please visit: www.thehelicoptercompany.com.sa

About Airbus

Airbus pioneers sustainable aerospace for a safe and united world. The Company constantly innovates to provide the most efficient and technologically-advanced solutions in aerospace, defence, and connected services. In commercial aircraft, Airbus offers the most modern and fuel-efficient airliners. Airbus is also a European leader in defence and security and one of the world's leading space businesses. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.

For more information, please visit: https://www.airbus.com/en

About The Red Sea Development Company

The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC - www.theredsea.sa) is a closed joint-stock company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia. TRSDC was established to drive the development of The Red Sea Project, a luxury, regenerative tourism destination that will set new standards in sustainable development and position Saudi Arabia on the global tourism map. 

 The project is being developed over 28,000 km2 of pristine lands and waters along Saudi Arabia’s west coast and includes a vast archipelago of more than 90 pristine islands. The destination also features sweeping desert dunes, mountain canyons, dormant volcanoes, and ancient cultural and heritage sites. It is designed to include hotels, residential properties, leisure, commercial and entertainment amenities, as well as supporting infrastructure that emphasizes renewable energy and water conservation and re-use, as well as a circular waste management system to achieve zero waste to landfill. 

 Activity for the first phase of development is well underway and is on track to be completed by the end of 2023. The project has surpassed significant milestones, with over 700 contracts signed to date, worth nearly SAR 19 bn ($5bn). 

 The 100-hectare Landscape Nursery, which will provide more than 25 million plants for the The Red Sea Project and AMAALA, is now fully operational. There are more than 10,000 workers currently on-site and 80km of new roads are now complete. The Construction Village and the Waste Management Centre are both fully operational and development is progressing well at the Coastal Village, which will be home to around 14,000 people who will eventually work at the destination. 

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