Optimistic About The Future At Heli-Exop 2010
AgustaWestland CEO Giuseppe Orsi spoke to reporters at the 2010
Heli-Expo earlier this week, offering an optimistic view of the
industry, and the company's future.
"Despite the crisis, 2009 has been a great year for us. Great in
terms of results," Orsi said. "As you know Finmeccanica will issue
our 2009 figures at the beginning of March nevertheless they have
been according to our expectation with a further growth compared to
2008, in turn the best year ever for AgustaWestland. Great in terms
of accomplishments, which position us in the best way towards the
Orsi cited the acquisition of PZL Swidnik, an agreement with
Tata Sons, giving them entrée to the Indian market, and the
announcement of a joint venture with Oboromprom, which will
introduce the AW139 (file photo below) into the Russian
makrket as examples of the company's successful globalization
efforts. "Through the opening of multiple regional business
headquarters in various countries we are ready to pursue new
business opportunities globally," he said. "Our latest addition to
this network is represented by AgustaWestland Portugal and, more
recently, AgustaWestland Spain."
Orsi said AgustaWestland has claimed a 40% market share in the
medium twin helicopter category, with the AW139 performing very
well in the offshore oil and gas sector, and that lighter
helicopters such as the AW109 were popular in the Corporate/VIP and
air ambulance sectors.
Looking towards the future, Orsi said the company has taken
maiden flights with four new helicopters, the T129, the new variant
of the AW101, the AW159 and the AW149 in less than three months by
the end of 2009. Company has also been granted full ice system
certification for the AW139.
Finally Orsi said AgustaWestland is anlyzing the Request for
Information (RFI) on the U.S. military's VXX program, and believes
the AW101 (file photo below) would best fill that role. But
the company has not yet determined whether it will respond to the
"Vertical flight has tremendous opportunities for the future:
technologies are being developed which will eventually lead to
vertical take-off and landing aircraft which can fly fast and high,
and thus become a significant player in the immense world of mass
air transportation," Orsi concluded. "As I said many times, also in
my position of the senior CEO of our industry, we must be ready to
take this challenge, otherwise others will do it before us."