Saturday, September 26, 2009

Alsalam, Boeing Promote Mideast Maintenance Capability



Dubai Air Show

Alsalam, Boeing Promote Mideast Maintenance Capability


Boeing and Saudi Arabia-based Alsalam Aircraft Company are working together to secure future aircraft co-assembly and maintenance agreements.

Mohammed Fallatah, Alsalam president and CEO, said here in Dubai that the company had just won another three-year contract with a two-year option with the U.S. government to maintain the F-15. He also confirmed that Alsalam was “working on getting the Typhoon contract with BAE,” with plans for co-assembling the 48 aircraft.

“We have to invest in new facilities in Saudi Arabia to do the work,” Fallatah said.

The jointly owned company is pushing to expand a full range of maintenance and modifications services for both military and civilian customers in the Middle East.

“Alsalam performs heavy maintenance and modification of both civil and military aircraft,” Fallatah said. “We have the capability of satisfying the needs on Boeing and non-Boeing platforms. We currently have over 2,800 employees, with roughly 1,000 in Riyadh and the rest scattered around Saudi Arabia.”

Alsalam facilities include three B747-400-sized aircraft maintenance hangars, an F-15 hangar, fuel/defuel hangar, and corrosion control, paint strip and sun shelters.

“We do the military PDM for the F-15S and C/D, Tornado, E-3A [Airborne Warning and Control System] and EK-3A, and the C-130,” Fallatah said.

Other Alsalam programs include military aircraft upgrades for the C-130, tankers and AWACS Link 16, he said.

Military technical support includes aircraft for the Royal Saudi Air Force, Royal Saudi Land Force, U.S. Army and Air Force, BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and Boeing.

Boeing owns roughly 60 percent and has a “majority position” in Alsalam via Boeing Industrial Technologies Group, said Torbjorn Sjogren, vice president of international support systems for Boeing.

“The Boeing Company has had a majority position in Alsalam from its outset and recently, we acquired an additional holding from one of its members,” Sjogren said. “Our original position was 50 percent and we have acquired an additional 10 percent. We are in a very significant majority position.

“We are focused on growing international presence and bringing the delivery of services closer to customers. We have done this in Australia, Saudi Arabia and other areas,” Sjogren said. “We are pursuing profitable business models built around relationships with local aerospace industry including potential equity positions, teaming and joint ventures. We have been involved in Saudi Arabia for 15 to 20 years. Today, we remain a strong and committed partner with Alsalam.”