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Bell Extends Global Market Reach
2015-07-20 15:44:22   Source:www.zgtyfly.com   comment 0
Core tip:PartofBellHelicopter’sstrategytoexpanditsinternationalfootprintisevidentinthecompany’srecentdealtomanufactureModel407cabinsexclusivelyinIndia.“Welookatlocalcontentintheframeofthebusinessstrategy,”PatrickMoulay,vicepresidentforglobalsalesandmarketing,

Part of Bell Helicopter’s strategy to expand its international footprint is evident in the company’s recent deal tomanufacture Model 407 cabins exclusively in India. “We look at local content in the frame of the business strategy,” Patrick Moulay, vice president for global sales and marketing, told AIN. “Local content has to reduce overall cost structure and increase competitiveness as well as satisfy local government requirements for a given campaign. Everything we are looking at is more driven by the latter. When you look at the size of the requirement for countries like India, China and Japan, clearly the governments want strong local content and strong partnerships with the local industry. That is clearly something we are working on. We will be manufacturing all 407 cabins in India. Nothing is off the table if it makes sense for our business.”

Moulay expects the current softness of the civil helicopter market to evaporate by next year and predicted that select markets that might currently be viewed as difficult have great long-term potential for Bell, particularly Russia. “Over the last three years Russia has been a great growth story for us. We have more than twenty 429s flying in Russia and the CIS [affiliated Commonwealth of Independent States] and have been averaging more than 10 aircraft per year there. The collapse of the ruble did some damage. Some customers had to delay or cancel [orders]. But the potential is there and we are committed to that business. There are no restrictions for commercial deals in Russia, and we have a long-term view of our strategy in the country, not just what happens in the next six months. Russia is the next big thing, and we want to be part of it.”

Moulay sees Japan as another promising market. Bell intends to participate in upcoming Japan Defense Force (JDF) tenders for what is expected to be a substantial number of helicopters. Overall JDF spending has climbed steadily in recent years, partially in response to the perceived threat from China’s growing military power in the region. Bell already has a substantial fleet in Japan, including forty 412s flying for civilian owners. 

“The Japanese economy has not been doing so well in recent years and the level of civil helicopter activity we have seen in Japan is not where it should be,” Moulay said. “We want to change that.”

For the last 55 years Bell has partnered on select licensed and joint projects in Japan with Fuji Heavy Industries. In 2014 Bell formed Japanese subsidiary Bell Helicopter Co. and in March this year Bell opened offices in Tokyo near Fuji. More than 1,000 Japanese companies worked with Fuji on building 78 UH-1Js under license from Bell between 1993 and 1998. 

Energy deregulation in Mexico, even with falling oil prices, should prove a catalyst for Bell to expand its installed customer base there. “We have been successful in the [Mexican] oil-and-gas segment. We sell a large number of 412s to the oil-and-gas producer market there year after year. We also have been successful with [Mexican] military forces,” Moulay said.

Moulay even sees potential in what has traditionally been a slow market in Africa. “We’ve received more tenders from Africa in the last 60 days than we have in all of the last year,” Moulay said. “There is potential there, for sure.” (AINonline)


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