Airbus Forecasts $3 Trillion Commercial Aviation Aftermarket Services

With the continuing exponential growth in the commercial aviation aftermarket, Airbus has published its first Global Services Forecast (GSF). This forecast predicts that over the next 20 years the total industry aftermarket services spend will reach US$3 trillion. Of this total, the cumulative value of Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul (MRO) activity will exceed $1.8 trillion by the year 2035. On an annual basis, Airbus predicts that the MRO spend will grow from $53 billion to over $132 billion per year, representing an average year-on-year growth of 4.6%. 

Aftermarket services activity is inherently linked to the growth of the passenger fleet in general – which will more than double from 19,500 commercial aircraft over 100 seats at the end of 2015 to almost 40,000 by the year 2035. Consequently, the need for pilots and technicians will commensurably increase: Today there are an estimated 200,000 active pilots who fly passenger aircraft. Airbus’ GSF predicts that this is set grow to some 450,000 pilots by 2035. Furthermore, this absolute total number of active pilots needed by the year 2035, plus the need to replace flight-crew who retire during the next 20 years will result in the need to train as many as 560,000 new pilots over this period. In terms of technical staff needed, the Airbus GSF predicts a requirement to train approximately 540,000 new technicians who will fulfil various duties across airframe, engines, and components domains. 

Of particular note, with the accelerating demand for aviation and its burgeoning airline fleets, Asia-Pacific will represent the largest portion of the market for both MRO activity and the need for new qualified pilots and technicians, while Europe and North America combined will account for approximately one third of the total MRO market spend.

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“Today our customers already operate the best aircraft in terms of modernity, economic performance, range and comfort for the passengers,” said Laurent Martinez, Senior Vice President of Airbus’ Services business unit. “Moreover, with the ever increasing growth of the commercial aircraft industry, with Airbus’ OEM expertise, Services By Airbus will deliver value-adding and quality services for its customers worldwide – on a par with the quality of the aircraft which we deliver.”

Services By Airbus is Airbus’ business unit tasked with addressing Airbus customers’ aftermarket needs, which is clustered around four principle domains: Maintenance; Upgrades; Training and Flight Operations. For supporting our customers’ maintenance and operational needs, Airbus’ dedicated global material services subsidiary Satair Group ensures reactivity for airlines and MROs world-wide for spare parts. In addition, Flight Hour and Total Support Package (FHS & TSP) services provide flexible and tailor-made solutions for availability and maintenance ‘by the hour’.

With Airbus’ Upgrades Services, customers’ aircraft stay up-to-date with the latest aerodynamic enhancements (such as wingtip Sharklets), state-of-the-art avionics and data communications, tailored aircraft mission configurations and take-off weights, passenger connectivity solutions and the most comfortable and well-equipped cabins.

Moreover, the latest Airbus Training techniques and tools – supported by 11 strategically located training centres, with more being added – will ensure there are the qualified pilots, cabin crew and maintenance staff available to support the arrival of thousands of new aircraft into the airlines’ fleets. 

Last but not least, regarding Flight Operations, Airbus’ new NAVBLUE subsidiary – launched at Farnborough Air Show 2016, following Airbus’ acquisition of Navtech – will provide airlines with individually customized aeronautical information and ATM solutions, not just for their fleets of Airbus aircraft, but also for aircraft made by other manufacturers.

Source: Airbus, an EADS N.V. company (Paris: EAD.PA)
Date: Jul 12, 2016