Mahindra to make smaller aircraft for Indian market

Monday, June 28, 2010

Mahindra Aerospace of the $6.3-billion utility vehicle maker Mahindra Group will become the first Indian private firm to manufacture smaller civil aircraft for the Indian general aviation market, which is set to boom this decade.Mahindra-Logo
"We will manufacture the turboprop aircraft in 2-20 seat capacity at our recently acquired Gippsland Aeronautics (GA) in Victoria State of Australia and market them in India," Mahindra Board Member, Mr Hemant Luthra, told IANS here.
Once Mahindra Aerospace plant at Malur near Bengaluru is set up and certified for production in the next three years, the manufacturing will be shifted to India to hard-sell the multi-utility aircraft for various civil aviation requirements. "We want to be the premier Indian producer of aircraft. We will explore every opportunity to become a top aircraft manufacturer on the lines of the Brazilian Embraer," Mahindra Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Mr Anand Mahindra, said on the margins of an aviation event here on Saturday. The 26-year-old GippsAero is a leading turboprop aircraft manufacturer for the general aviation sector and has certification in 32 countries worldwide, including the US Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR 23), which testifies the highest degree of safety to fly fare-paying passengers between small and remote airfields.
Mahindra Aerospace acquired majority stake (75.1 percent) in GippsAero and Aerostaff Australia for Rs.175 crore ($38 million) in December 2009 jointly with Kotak Private Equity. Aerostaff is a 20-year-old manufacturer of aerospace components and assemblies for global aerospace original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) at Port Melbourne in Victoria state. About 250 smaller aircraft of GippsAero operate in 34 countries. It currently has an order book to manufacture about 20 aircraft in the 8-10 seat capacity.

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