Russian Helicopters (subsidiary of JSC UIC Oboronprom, part of Russian Technologies State Corporation) and AgustaWestland (a Finmeccanica company) have recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding for a planned order of 20 AW139 helicopters to be assembled in Russia.
AgustaWestland and Russian Helicopters have also recently announced the establishment of HeliVert, a joint venture company which will assemble and deliver to UTair a batch of AW139 helicopters from its Tomilino plant in the Moscow region.
Andrey Martirosov, UTair CEO said: “We are sure that the replenishment of the Company fleet with modern AW139 aircraft will enable UTair to increase the volume of operations by a multipurpose use of these helicopters and their high level of reliability. Continuous modernization of UTair helicopter fleet and qualification of UTair employees ensure our leading position in the market of helicopter services.”
Bruno Spagnolini, AgustaWestland CEO said: “It gives us great pleasure to sign this Memorandum of Understanding with UTair, strengthening our good working relationship with the leading helicopter operator in Russia. We are also delighted that the HeliVert facility will be officially opened in October this year and will start to assemble the market leading AW139 in Russia, strengthening the range of Russian helicopters available in the market.”
HeliVert’s Tomilino plant, near Moscow, will have the capacity to assemble up to 20 helicopters per year, with production to start later this year and progressively increase to a steady state regime by 2015. The total headcount at maximum capacity will be over 100 people. The plant will meet the growing demand for the AW139 helicopter in both Russian and CIS civil markets.
A Heads of Agreement was signed by AgustaWestland and Russian Helicopters in Farnborough in July 2008 for the purpose of establishing a joint venture to set up and run a civil AW139 final assembly line in Russia. This was followed by the Joint Venture Agreement signed on November 6, 2008 during the Italy-Russia intergovernmental summit held at the Kremlin in Moscow and attended by the Russian President Dmitri Medvedev and the Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. A shareholder agreement was subsequently signed in June 2010 paving the path to start building the plant in Tomilino.