ONE-ON-ONE: GLOBAL MARKET LEADER MARKS 25 YEARS OF SHAPING THE INDUSTRY

SP’s Aviation|April 2020

ONE-ON-ONE: GLOBAL MARKET LEADER MARKS 25 YEARS OF SHAPING THE INDUSTRY
Even during this torrid Corona crisis, Lufthansa Technik continues to provide reliable services and fulfillment based on a solid network of global MRO operations in the Americas, EMEA, and Asia Pacific and a vast network of subcontractors. “To fulfil the growing MRO demands in Asia and remain a key player in this environment, we have been regionalising our organisation to be closer to our customers and developing our offerings.” Gerald Steinhoff, Senior Vice President Corporate Sales Asia Pacific, Lufthansa Technik AG speaks to SP’s Aviation on their growth and plans for the future.

BUSINESS CURVE

As on today the business curve in commercial aviation is extremely dynamic.

SP’s Aviation (SP’s): How do you perceive the performance of business in the following sections of civil aviation? a. Mainstream airlines’ operations? b. Regional connectivity operations? c. Business and General Aviation?

Gerald Steinhoff (Gerald): Let us focus on Asia Pacific. It is one of the fastest-growing markets in the world mainly pushed forward by Tourism, which plays an important role creating demand and growth and has a variety of strong economic impacts for many industries. Civil aviation is one. The APAC market is diverse; it varies from legacy carriers to a lot of LCCs and start-ups, subject to regional demands. MRO business mainly depends on airlines’ growth, while at the same time airline business has a tight correlation to economic performance of regional tourism- as for example air traffic passenger demand. How dynamic the business in commercial aviation is, can clearly be seen under the extraordinary current circumstances.

Regarding business and general aviation, the growing demand of corporate users and offerings of charter services have led to a significant business growth in recent years, such as Hong Kong and China. However, it requires a lot of infrastructure to support the business sustainability.

INVESTMENTS & INNOVATION

The MRO industry is highly competitive, especially in Asia. Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam are each expanding their own capabilities to compete with the more established providers in Hong Kong, Japan and even China.

SP’s: What is Lufthansa Technik doing to stay competitive and earn a piece of the Asian pie?

Gerald: As a global MRO market leader, we have prepared ourselves for all-new engine types and aircraft types, especially for the new aircraft types like the Airbus A350 or the Boeing 777X. The APAC market is known to be extremely competitive and requires local presence and internal access to the market.

To fulfill the growing MRO demands in Asia and remain a key player in this environment, we have been regionalising our organization to be closer to our customers and developing our offerings. We have been continuously developing our regional set-up to further understand our customers’ needs and find the right solution for them. Through our regionalisation plans, we have literally become more diverse and multicultural. We encourage the intensive exchange with our customers – with sales representatives who are located in the respective countries and who facilitate the cultural and linguistic exchange. We are simply there where our customer is and we are ready whenever he needs us.

SP’s: What kind of innovations are you introducing in your services portfolio?

Gerald: We are well-positioned in the market with our AVIATAR suite. It offers a comprehensive data analytics solution for airlines – from the data pipe and a platform that digitizes maintenance data to realize benefits based on analytics and predictive tools.

We also put great effort in expanding our portfolio services and are successful in the region with a number of special products and services that extend beyond commodities, which help our customers to adapt to the latest in-flight trend, overcome shop capacity constraints, improve on operation efficiency and save costs in different areas etc. A very good example is our Mobile Engine Services. It offers sustainable savings by optimizing Time On Wing (TOW) through tailored-made on-wing/ on-site engine repair. Furthermore, we have developed a wide range of cabin modification solutions that we can offer to customize according to our customer’s needs.

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April 2020