Aviation sector plays vital role in UAE’s growth, prosperity: Zeyoudi - GulfToday

Aviation sector plays vital role in UAE’s growth, prosperity: Zeyoudi


Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi with officials and engineering and technical employees of Sanad.

Dr Thani Bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, has visited Sanad, the global aerospace engineering and leasing solutions leader wholly owned by Abu Dhabi’s sovereign investor Mubadala Investment Company PJSC (Mubadala).

Located on the campus of Zayed International Airport, Sanad is the region’s largest independent maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services provider, renowned for its 37-years of expertise and heritage in delivering world-class services and financing solutions to leading aircraft original engine manufacturers (OEMs) and global airlines.

Dr Al Zeyoudi was welcomed by Ismail Ali Abdullah, Head of UAE Clusters at Mubadala Investment Company, and Mansoor Janahi, Managing Director and Group CEO of Sanad, along with senior leaders and Sanad’s engineering and technical employees.

During the visit, he was introduced to Sanad’s comprehensive operations, which serves a multitude of flagship clients from global OEMs and more than 30 airlines, including Etihad Airways, American Airlines, Fly Dubai, Saudia Airlines, and Asiana Airlines, all receiving MRO services from its facility in Abu Dhabi.

He emphasised the significant contribution the aviation sector makes to the UAE’s growth and prosperity by facilitating tourism, trade, and foreign and domestic investment flows. He highlighted that Sanad is one of the promising UAE companies in the rapidly growing aviation sector, playing a vital role in the growth of the UAE’s non-oil exports of goods and services.

Al Zeyoudi added, “Connectivity is one of the cornerstones of the UAE’s economic ambitions, and the aviation sector has enabled us to become a truly global hub for business, trade and investment. During my visit to Sanad, I observed its impressive capabilities in engine maintenance, financing, leasing, air traffic management, and airport security. Sanad has promising future plans to continue contributing to the growth and development of the aviation sector and its related services – and as a result, to the national economy as a whole.”

He praised Sanad’s operational excellence and commercial achievements, along with the high-quality services it provides to its global client base, which includes more than 30 of the world’s leading airlines. He commended the significant contributions of the company’s Emirati talent, who constitute about 30% of Sanad’s workforce. These talented employees are integral to Sanad’s unique success story, supporting the UAE’s development goals in the aviation industry, enhancing Sanad’s local, regional, and global presence, and improving engineering performance in aircraft engine MRO and thereby helping to position Abu Dhabi as a global aviation hub.

Sanad plays a pivotal role in supporting the UAE’s foreign trade, with more than 90% of its revenues generated from outside the UAE. The company aims to bolster investment and continue its strategic partnerships with major global industry leaders,reinforcing the UAE’s vision for foreign trade, and solidifying Abu Dhabi and the UAE’s position as an influential global hub for the aviation industry. Sanad’s global expansion strategy is currently focused on African and East Asian markets, which will positively impact contract values and the UAE foreign trade.

With accelerated and effective strategies, Sanad continues to meet the growing global demand for aircraft engine maintenance. In 2023, Sanad maintained 142 engines across four engine types – IAE V2500, GE Aerospace GEnx, Rolls-Royce Trent 700 and CFM International LEAP – marking the highest number in its history.

In 2024, Sanad aims to service around 170 engines and anticipates the addition of a new maintenance line, with expectations of servicing over 200 engines in Abu Dhabi by 2025.

Sanad recently unveiled a strategic transaction between Sanad and CFM Materials, the world’s largest provider of used serviceable components for CFM International engines, during the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT) Asia in Hong Kong.

The sale of two “CFM56-7B*” engines to CFM Materials underscores Sanad’s strategic shift and proactive approach to strengthening its market position in the aviation industry.

This strategic agreement marks a pivotal milestone for the Sanad Leasing division’s ongoing strategy, which was initiated last year with a renewed focus on monetising existing assets and leveraging the Sanad Leasing division to empower and enhance the Sanad MRO division.

Kashish Kohli, Group Chief Financial Officer and SVP Leasing Division at Sanad, said, “We are pleased to announce the successful sale of two CFM56 engines to CFM Materials. This transaction reaffirms our commitment to optimising our portfolio collaborating with industry leaders like CFM Materials.”

This collaboration presents new opportunities for CFM Materials to support MRO networks, airlines, lessors, manufacturers, and other service providers worldwide. Adding two CFM56-7B engines to the CFM Materials portfolio enables them to meet increasing customer demand.

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