Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Thursday, May 09, 2002
Snecma sets up Indian arm
Mr Jean-Paul Bechat, Chairman & CEO of Snecma group (sitting), with Mr Philippe Humbert, Vice-President, International Development, at a press conference in Bangalore on Wednesday.
BANGALORE, May 8
SNECMA, the leading French aerospace company, announced here on Wednesday the setting up of its Indian subsidiary and design and research centre at Bangalore.
The subsidiary, called Snecma Aerospace India (SAI), comes with an initial investment of Rs 20 crore.
SAI will perform studies and develop engine components, aircraft equipment and onboard software at its Bangalore centre.
Mr Jean-Paul Bechat, Chairman and CEO of Snecma group companies, told press persons here on Wednesday that SAI would conceive and later produce engines and aircraft equipment in co-operation with the Indian aerospace industry.
Snecma has ongoing collaborations with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd and with Gas Turbine Research Establishment.
Mr Bechat also said that if India ordered more Mirage 2000 fighters, local manufacturing assembly of M53 engines would be offered to HAL.
HAL has been in collaboration with Snecma group company, Turbomeca, for the engines of the recently launched Advanced Light Helicopter.
Snecma is already involved in the co-development of a more powerful engine for the ALH, called Shakti, along with HAL.
Snecma's Vice-President, Iinternational Development, Mr Philippe Humbert, said that HAL would also manufacture, under licence from Snecma, the TM 333 2B2 engine for the ALH.
The agreement with HAL is expected to be signed in a couple of months. He further said that Larzac engine's enhanced version would be developed in co-operation with HAL for India's HJT 36 intermediate jet trainers.
SAI will initially carry out the design studies on behalf of Snecma companies.
Snecma is taking steps towards the development of a local R&D centre to support the group's future collaboration with the Indian aerospace industry. Mr Olivier Laederich, Managing Director, SAI, said that the talents in Bangalore would contribute to the group. SAI plans to recruit 100 skilled Indian engineers over the next two years. Mr Laederich said that SAI would consider outsourcing work relating to embedded software to Indian companies once it established itself.
"We have been approached by many companies, '' he said.
Research technology, development and engineering are the fundamental activities which are key to the group's strategy.
The cost of these activities equalled about 15 per cent of the group's consolidated sales in 2001. With its headquarters in Paris, Snecma has two core areas of business - propulsion and equipment. It covers the entire spectrum of propulsion technologies, producing powerplants for commercial jetliners, military transport, training and combat aircraft, helicopters, missiles, satellites and launch vehicles.
Snecma's list of customers includes Airbus Industrie, Arianespace, Boeing, BAE Systems, Bombardier, Dassault Aviation, EADS, Eurocopter, HAL, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon.
The customers also include 1,700 airlines, helicopter operators and armed forces around the world.
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