Satair Group started Integrated Material Services (IMS) almost a year and a half ago and demand for this new market offering has been strong from the start.
We are taking this step by step, however, and we work carefully to bring each new customer on successfully before we take on the next challenge. Today, the programme covers only the Airbus fleet, but in time we will expand to cover the Boeing fleet as well.
IMS is a high quality product offering covering consumable and expendable parts aimed at allowing customers to focus on their core MRO or airline businesses. IMS does this by providing a robust planning, procurement and logistics service that keeps expendable inventory flowing to meet customers’ complex and time-sensitive demands.
The IMS service offering also includes low-cost repairable/reclaimable parts. Any given customer part number scope can be more than 50,000 part numbers for any given Airbus fleet.
IMS has well refined processes that integrate with the customer and we work hard to provide a seamless transition from customer-owned and managed inventory to IMS.
We tailor IMS exactly to customer needs – making this the right deal for both parties. It allows the customer to achieve solid financial benefits while maintaining a supply chain performance of 98%. The airline relieves the burden of needing to make capital investments for expendables; in some cases with buy-back, and there is quick relief to the customer’s balance sheet as they do not need to invest in inventory.
IMS also allows the customer to reduce planning and procurement overhead costs. This gives competitive advantage for the airline or MRO versus the old business model of doing it all themselves. Airlines want to focus on their core business operations of flying people.
Singapore Airlines, TigerAir, and Cathay Pacific are now partners with us as we manage the expendable inventory portion of their supply chain. Currently, we are in final negotiations with other operators – outside Asia Pacific as well – that are demanding this service. Our approach is to collaborate with the airline for joint programme success as we take on their 98-99% Service Level performance requirement.
IMS is designed to be a stand-alone service.However, we have also partnered with the Airbus Flight Hour Services (FHS) programme. When an airline or MRO chooses this combination, they are provided a total material services offering. This includes Airbus FHS providing a full rotable parts services and components support while the IMS programme and service provides an expendable management solution including procurement and planning/forecasting.
IMS targets both global reach and soon also global fleet. Because of our close connections with Airbus, we are initially focussing on Airbus aircraft types. To support our new fleet, we have concentrated on the entry into service of the A350XWB. This allows the airline to focus on new fleet operations and avoid the burdens of expendable inventory management.
We then roll out our service to our customers’ legacy Airbus fleets such as the A320 Family and the A380.We currently have A350, A380 and A320 programmes in operation and are ramping up to cover the rest of the Airbus fleet with both our new and existing customers.
We are proud of what we are able to do for our customers and proud of our proven growth path. IMS is the new aviation industry supply chain.
By Paul Lochab – Chief Commercial Officer, Satair Group