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AFI KLM E&M becomes a key MRO player

AFI KLM E&M becomes a key MRO player

For the new-gen LEAP engine

Can you give us an overview of the LEAP engine market?

Market growth for the LEAP engine is enormous, with a global replacement wave of the current generation by next-generation aircraft. The LEAP engine market is forecast to be 50% bigger than that of its predecessor, the CFM56 engine, which is already the most significant market today. We have never seen before such a high rate of aircraft delivery, which for example is expected to increase further to up to 70 a month for the A320neo! The challenges of decarbonizing airlines drives the need to put these engines into service: the LEAP-1A (for the A320neo) and the LEAP-1B (for the 737 MAX) offer operators enhanced performance in terms of fuel burn, CO2 emissions and noise levels. Operators also have very high expectations for LEAP engine reliability because the CFM56 engine was a very successful engine family.


How does AFI KLM E&M respond to LEAP operators’ needs?

As CBSA holders, we will offer the full range of MRO service providers, from field support, light and heavy quick turns to full performance restoration, as well as, engineering, predictive maintenance and many associated services. We offer operators dual capabilities (for -1A and -1B) in both Paris and Amsterdam, which increases our flexibility from a capacity standpoint. We also have a field team performing on-wing and on-site repairs and we are investigating how and where to increase the teams and capabilities in the different regions to be closer to the customer and shorten response times.

How will your customers benefit from AFI KLM E&M LEAP service offer?

As an Airline-MRO, we better understand how airline operations interact with maintenance. This is a great value proposition for our customers. We can also successfully address local needs as a global player and as the largest non-OEM engine MRO provider with customers all over the world. On top of that, our footprint is strengthened by the agility of our On-Wing Services teams who time and again demonstrated that proximity is not an empty word at AFI KLM E&M! We also have the most advanced predictive maintenance solution on the market: Prognos® for Engine. As we move to a new generation of engine producing a lot more data, we intend to continue improving this exclusive solution. This should lead to even better prediction, prevention of unscheduled removals and better maintenance cost optimization.


What are your main challenges ahead?

The tremendous rate of aircraft delivery is challenging for the entire supply chain. The global MRO market needs to ramp up capacity quickly. This is a challenge post-Covid, especially from a staffing perspective. We also need to continuously arbitrate the transition from the legacy to the new generation aircraft, with still high maintenance demand on legacy aircraft and engines. The speed of developing and industrializing new repairs for the new generation engines is also a key factor because, as always, we focus on our philosophy “repair rather than replace, whenever possible”, which is of course the right thing to do from a cost and sustainability standpoint.

A word to conclude?

As this will be the most significant engine market (and engine maintenance market) ever, extensive MRO capacities will be needed. So AFI KLM E&M entering the fast-growing LEAP market is incredibly good news for operators around the world: we’ll be here for them by providing the BEST4LEAP!