Etihad Aviation Group’s Engineering and Aviation Training divisions have both signed contracts to collaborate with Sky Prime, the largest private aviation operator in the Middle East, based in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The agreements were announced at the Saudi Airshow where Etihad is showcasing its Special Olympics liveried Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, alongside the Embraer Phenom 100E used in Etihad Aviation Training’s flight school. Etihad Airways Engineering is exhibiting its extensive Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) capabilities, including the new Airbus A350 maintenance services announced earlier this week.
Etihad Airways Engineering has added another key customer to its VIP aircraft maintenance portfolio by joining hands with Sky Prime. The agreement allows the two companies to collaborate in multiple areas of operation, from heavy maintenance and cabin modification support including Part 21J and Part 21G engineering services.
Under the scope of the new agreement, Etihad Airways Engineering has already delivered C-checks and cabin repairs to two VIP aircraft in the Sky Prime fleet, at its state-of-the-art MRO facility in Abu Dhabi. Additional projects are planned over the coming months which will see the engineering team deliver a wide range of engineering solutions to Sky Prime.
Abdul Khaliq Saeed, Etihad Airways Engineering Chief Executive Officer, said: “Our team enjoys a strong reputation in the international market for expertise and experience on major commercial aircraft platforms. While we have been supporting luxury aviation operators locally for many years, we are now expanding our services to the VIP aviation sector across the region and beyond. Our partnership with Sky Prime is a perfect example of this expanded scope.?
Captain Mokhtar, Sky Prime Aviation Services CEO, said: “We value this co-operation with Etihad Aviation Group which will play an active role in supporting and growing the Saudi aviation sector.?
Aircraft hangars at the Abu Dhabi facility cover approximately 66,000 sq metres, including 10,000 sq metres of aircraft painting facilities and a custom-designed hangar that can accommodate up to three Airbus A380 aircraft simultaneously. The company has successfully completed maintenance projects over the years for airlines across the world.
Etihad Aviation Training (EAT) will for the first time collaborate with a partner in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, after a landmark signing ceremony with Sky Prime, further strengthen business ties between the two nations.
As part of the agreement, Sky Prime will dry and wet lease EAT’s Full Flight Simulators at Zayed Campus, Etihad’s training facility in Abu Dhabi. The training will be conducted by both Etihad and Sky Prime instructors.
Paolo La Cava, Director of EAT, said: “EAT is looking forward to welcoming Sky Prime instructors and pilots to conduct Airbus A320, A340 and Boeing 777 and 787 training at Zayed Campus. Last year was a strong year following EAT’s relaunch and we anticipate an even stronger 2019 with Sky Prime as our first Saudi Arabian partner.?
As part of the agreement, Crew Resource Management training, a tool for improving air safety, will also be conducted by EAT trainers for Sky Prime’s pilots and cabin crew. Sky Prime Cabin Crew will also receive recurrent training with EAT’s cabin safety trainers.
Captain Mokhtar, Sky Prime Aviation Services CEO, said: "In line with the Saudi 2030 vision, we are delighted Etihad Aviation Training are helping us fulfil our development strategy. To use their best-in-class training facilities and pilots to train our flying crew will enable us to gain the trust of our customers.?
EAT currently boasts 11 Full Flight Simulators (FFS) including three Airbus A320 FFS devices, two Airbus A330/A340s, one Airbus A380, two Boeing 777s and three Boeing 787-9 devices. The facility is expanding and will soon see the arrival of a brand new Airbus A350 FFS, as well as an Airbus A320 Fixed Based Device, both of which will be available in Abu Dhabi to third party customers.
There are 109 cadet pilots currently in EAT programmes, all of whom are UAE nationals. In addition to training pilots for Etihad Airways on our Multi- Crew Pilot License (MPL) program, EAT also trains pilots for third party customers, including L3 and Alpha Aviation.