Mubadala in deal to bring aircraft servicing facilities to UAE

More pieces of the aviation puzzle are falling into place for Abu Dhabi with partnerships with Honeywell and Goodrich.

FARNBOROUGH // Mubadala Development has pushed deeper into the aviation maintenance sector forging agreements with the industry giants Honeywell and Goodrich at the Farnborough International Airshow in the UK. Honeywell Aerospace makes avionics systems and Goodrich landing gear systems. They will link up with the Abu Dhabi company to set up local repair and servicing facilities in the emirate, helping Mubadala towards its goal of developing a regional centre of aerospace excellence.

A key element will be Mubadala's recently launched Sanad Aero Solutions, which hopes to do financing deals worth US$500 million (Dh1.83 billion) by the end of the year to provide liquidity for airlines looking to lease spare engines and other big-ticket components including landing gear. Securing finance is a growing need as many airlines lost billions during the economic downturn. The heads of agreements follow larger deals announced by Mubadala, a strategic investment company owned by the Abu Dhabi Government, to develop a $800m military aircraft maintenance centre in Al Ain and contracts with Airbus to develop composite aircraft parts.

"When you look at the deals announced today they are small pieces that are part of a bigger strategy we are executing," said Homaid al Shemmari, the executive director of Mubadala Aerospace. "What we really want is to create a one-stop solution for our customers." The company hopes to become the world's third-largest aviation maintenance business through its two affiliates, Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies and the Zurich-based SR Technics.

The Goodrich deal is aimed at creating the Middle East's first dedicated landing gear facility fully operational in 2012. The Honeywell deal makes Mubadala's two maintenance firms both authorised service providers for its avionics and mechanical components.