Monarch Aircraft Engineering Limited (MAEL) officially opened its brand new multi-million pound maintenance hangar at Birmingham Airport yesterday by Sir Roy McNulty, Non-Executive Director, Monarch Holdings.
The facility, which is immediately creating 150 new jobs, also has the potential to add a further 150 posts.
The 110,000 sq ft state-of-the-art facility will complement the company’s existing engineering operations at London Gatwick, London Luton and Manchester Airports and supports the continuing growth of MAEL’s high quality aircraft engineering activities.
The new facility can accommodate almost every aircraft type in its two bays, incorporates industry-leading design and build standards, and is one of the first to have the capacity for Boeing 787 Dreamliner maintenance, with sufficient capacity for other wide body aircraft, such as the Boeing 777, 747 and Airbus A350. It is large enough to accommodate two Boeing 777-300ER aircraft or 10 narrow-body aircraft and will contain a number of component-repair and back shops. The vast building, covering c2.5 acres is big enough to house four full size football pitches, 2400 Minis or 450 double decker buses.
In its first month of operation, seven different aircraft types are scheduled for maintenance in the facility, including Airbus A300, A320 and A321, Boeing 757 and 767, Embraer 195 and Bombardier Q400.
Today, some 60% of the world’s airline carriers outsource heavy maintenance work, with a global MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) market worth US$49 billion. This is predicted to grow to US$65 billion over the next 10 years (Source: Aerostrategy).
The Birmingham hangar will enable MAEL to service a greater share of the growing market for aircraft maintenance service in the UK and Europe. Its own third-party (i.e. non-Monarch Airlines) maintenance activities have grown to 31% of business in 2013 from 18% in 2010, and over the next two years this is planned to increase to almost 40% of turnover. This will consolidate MAEL’s position in the top 10 largest airframe MRO organisations in Europe.
The new facility will ensure the continued growth of MAEL’s highly regarded apprenticeship scheme, now in its 42nd year. More than 700 apprentices have been through the scheme since its inception. Not only does the scheme help create jobs in the local community, it also provides an essential pipeline of skilled aircraft engineers for MAEL and the wider industry.
Commenting on the new MRO facility at Birmingham Airport, Mick Adams, Managing Director of MAEL, said: “Today is a real milestone in the growth and development of MAEL as we officially open our tremendous new state-of-the-art engineering hangar at Birmingham Airport. The hard work and dedication of the whole team involved in this project has been outstanding and has allowed us to ensure it has opened on time and most importantly, within budget.
“Our own people, the contractors John Sisk & Son Ltd, RPS Group plc and Birmingham Airport have all formed part of the large team involved in this project over the last year and I would like to thank them for their unending commitment. The hangar, together with our existing facilities at London Luton and Manchester further secures our ability to provide both existing and new customers, with a first class maintenance, repair and overhaul service.
Iain Rawlinson, Executive Chairman of The Monarch Group, who attends the opening of the facility today, said: “We are very proud to be opening this innovative new facility, just one year after we announced its creation. It has been a huge achievement. This multi-million pound investment at Birmingham Airport, a key and growing part of The Monarch Group’s operation, clearly demonstrates our commitment to the region and is not only generating jobs, but will also attract more international and domestic customers, benefitting both the region and the UK economy as a whole.”
Paul Kehoe, CEO of Birmingham Airport said: “Today’s opening is a major development for Monarch Aircraft Engineering, Birmingham Airport and the Midlands region as a whole. Opening this state-of-the-art facility in Birmingham underpins Monarch’s long-term commitment to the region, creating job opportunities for skilled engineers and young people looking to start a career in aircraft maintenance. We look forward to welcoming the arrival of new aircraft and airlines flying into Birmingham specifically to benefit from this world class facility.”