Vietnam MRO Adds Structural Repairs With Spirit Signing

Spirit and VAECO signing at MRO Asia-Pacific

Kailash Krishnaswamy, Spirit senior VP aftermarket, and Pham Anh Tuan, VAECO VP, sign an MRO agreement on Sept. 27 at MRO Asia-Pacific.

Credit: Lee Ann Shay/Aviation Week Network

SINGAPORE—Spirit AeroSystems signed a service agreement with Vietnam Airlines Engineering Ltd. Co. (VAECO) on Sept. 27 at Aviation Week’s MRO Asia-Pacific that allows Spirit to provide on-demand engineering support to the airline MRO.

“If there is a need for repairs that are not disclosed in the manuals, then we will step in and provide design support to get the repair done,” says Kailash Krishnaswamy, senior vice president of Aftermarket Solutions at Spirit AeroSystems.

Because of global supply chain pains, Krishnaswamy says several Spirit customers in the region “are also now opening up to out-of-book repairs, as opposed to replacement of damage parts with new,” so VAECO will now also be able to perform those repairs for third parties.

VAECO is headquartered in Hanoi and operates six hangars from two locations—Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City. Both locations have backshops next to the heavy maintenance hangars to perform the repairs for both Vietnam Airlines and other airlines in the region. Having this regional repair capacity should expedite repairs and decrease shipping costs.

VAECO has been wanting to expand its repair capability and "this partnership with Spirit is a good way to do it," says Pham Anh Tuan, executive vice president.

Spirit plans to ship the first tooling to VAECO in the next few weeks and start training VAECO staff. Krishnaswamy expects the first customer unit to probably ship in the first quarter 2024.

“We expect to repair associated ships sets of about 30-40 aircraft per year,” via the agreement, says Krishnaswamy.

In the past 1.5 years, Spirit has signed several partnership agreements globally to place regional repair capability closer to customers. They include agreements with EGAT in Taiwan, GAMECO in China, Malaysia Airlines, Joramco in Jordan, ST Engineering in the Middle East and GMR Aero Technics in India.

“We expect mid double-digit revenue from all of these by 2025,” or $30-40 million of revenue from these partnerships combined, he says.

With the VAECO agreement, Spirit AeroSystems Aftermarket Solutions has 11 wholly owned, joint venture or authorized service centers around the world.

Vietnam Airlines' in-service fleet includes 85 aircraft, including 57 Airbus A320s, according to Aviation Week Network's Fleet Discovery database.

Lee Ann Shay

As executive editor of MRO and business aviation, Lee Ann Shay directs Aviation Week's coverage of maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO), including Inside MRO, and business aviation, including BCA.