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Dubai Airshow: Forward thinking keeps Dubai one step ahead

Posted 17 November 2019 · Add Comment

Dubai forms a significant link in the chain of Boeing’s increasingly important global services operation.

Three letters that no airline wants to see in relation to one of its aircraft are ‘AOG’. ‘Aircraft on ground’ means that it is unable to move because of the failure of a component. And, with aircraft only earning money when they are in the air, that is bad news.

Aircraft manufacturers are alert to the urgency of the situation. Boeing global services, for example, aims to have a spare part in the dispatch dock of its distribution centre, near Seattle, within four hours of receiving an ‘AOG’ alert from a customer.

From there, trucks and aircraft will get it to where it needs to be around the globe as quickly as possible.

Typically, a component from Seattle will be in Dubai in 24 hours

To cut down on that time, however, Boeing maintains several depots worldwide, to which some of the most frequently required spare parts are ‘forward-deployed’. One of those is in Dubai to service the company’s clients in the region.

Most of the parts held in Dubai are for the 777, a mainstay of Emirates Airline, or the 737, which makes up Flydubai’s fleet.

The Dubai distribution centre carries around 20,000 parts in its inventory, although this is a tiny percentage of the overall stock held in the US.

As one of the fastest-growing services markets in the world, the Middle East’s commercial, defence, and business and general aviation services market, is expected to be worth a combined $225 billion over the next 10 years.

Boeing has, for some years, been placing increasing emphasis on its global services division, which focuses on four areas: supply chain; engineering, modifications and maintenance; digital solutions and analytics; and training and professional services. These areas form an increasingly important revenue stream for the company – in 2018 they brought in $18 billion. 

Training, in particular, is growing rapidly in importance as airlines seek to find the necessary pilots to replace retiring flightdeck crew and handle the anticipated surge in passenger demand over the next 20 years.

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