Saudi Arabia-based commercial operator The Helicopter Company (THC) and Leonardo are to introduce 16 AW139 intermediate twin engine aircraft for EMS and corporate transport missions across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Deliveries are to start this year and will be completed within the following three years. These aircraft add to THC’s existing AW139 fleet of seven. Six additional units may follow in the future expansion.
“We are really excited to expand significantly our Leonardo fleet with this new order,” says CEO captain Arnaud Martinez. “The AW139 is certainly one of the most reliable platforms in the industry and the ‘best in class’ transportation in this category. We are also delighted to re-emphasise our partnership with Leonardo, a historic partner of THC, to develop new capabilities and services across the full rotary ecosystem in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
In December 2021, THC signed a purchase agreement with Airbus for 20 five-bladed H145 and six ACH160s.
Leonardo MD Gian Piero Cutillo adds: “We’re extremely pleased to build on the outstanding collaboration developed over the years with THC, contributing to its continued excellent quality service growth with more AW139 helicopters. We look forward to supporting our partner to deliver an even greater level of effective and safe passenger transport and emergency response missions across its country.”
THC has also entered into a strategic partnership with Rotortrade that will allow each company to expand their operation to meet the growing demand for helicopter services. THC is looking to build a new activation sector in Saudi Arabia as it supports its broader expansion in the helicopter industry, while Rotortrade gains access to a wider customer base through the opening of its 11th branch in the Kingdom.
Newly-appointed Rotortrade chairman captain Fahd Cynndy says: “An alliance between Rotortrade, one of the aviation sector’s most agile and innovative helicopter distributors, and THC, a uniquely well-positioned organisation, creates ideal conditions for the rapid development of helicopter transport infrastructure within Saudi Arabia and the region. In turn, this will have a catalytic positive effect on economic growth, the exchange of knowledge and ideas and job creation, further supporting the realisation of the societal goals of Saudi Vision 2030.”
Rotortrade president Philippe Lubrano adds: “This is an important milestone for Rotortrade, ushering in a new phase of expansion and growth in MEA and globally. With the support of THC we will have the means to grow our inventory to all corners of the globe, fulfilling our commitment to offer helicopters you can trust.”