Sikorsky Signs Letter of Intent with WZL 1 to Discuss Regional Support of Black Hawk Helicopters
Sikorsky, September 05, 2012 - KIELCE, Poland - Sikorsky Aerospace Services (SAS) and PZL Mielec – manufacturer of S-70i™ BLACK HAWK helicopters in Poland announced today they have signed a Letter of Intent with Poland’s principal maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) company Wojskowe Zaklady Lotnicze NR 1 S.A. (WZL 1). The agreement relates to a Polish Government decision to procure up to 26 S-70i multi-role helicopters made in Mielec for the Polish armed forces. SAS is the aftermarket division of Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Technologies Corporation.
Founded in 1947, WZL 1 is Poland’s leading provider of aviation maintenance and overhaul services. Under the terms of the agreement, PZL Mielec, SAS and WZL 1 will explore ways that WZL 1 could offer its expertise in line, base and component maintenance and upgrades, as well as other general MRO services, to support a future helicopter procurement by the Polish Ministry of Defence. The Letter of Intent also addresses the proposal to establish a regional MRO center in Poland to support other BLACK HAWK operators.
“As a leading MRO provider with expertise supporting the Polish armed forces, WZL 1 is well established to provide in-country support for the BLACK HAWK helicopter,” said Frank DiPasquale, SAS Vice President of Sales and Strategic Relationships. “We are also excited that WZL 1 could also serve as a central base for regional support of our BLACK HAWK fleet.
This year, the Polish Ministry of Defence is expected to release a tender for multi-role helicopters followed by a contract award in late 2013. Sikorsky will offer the Polish-built S-70i aircraft, a customizable variant of the BLACK HAWK helicopter flown by militaries in 25 countries.
“The potential production of S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopters in Mielec for the Polish Armed Forces brings an opportunity to grow the entire Polish aviation industry,” said Janusz Zakrecki, President of PZL Mielec. “To work with WZL 1 will be a positive move as we seek to expand our network of partners, and develop local suppliers.”
"Acquisition of new helicopter platform for Polish Ministry of Defence gives us opportunity for further development and becoming a modern company. WZL-1 is open to cooperate with any potential partner, which will be a supplier of a new helicopter for PMOD. It will be an honor to cooperate with SAC" said Jan Piętowski, Chairman of the Board of WZL-1.”
Polskie Zakłady Lotnicze Sp. z o.o. (PZL Mielec) is the largest aircraft manufacturer in Poland. Since acquiring the company in 2007, Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation has invested US$125 million to modernize the facility and grow the Polish workforce by 40 percent to almost 2,100 employees. Today, PZL Mielec manufactures the S-70i BLACK HAWK helicopter for export to militaries and governments worldwide.
Sikorsky Aerospace Services provides comprehensive support to rotary and fixed wing aircraft throughout the world. It offers its military and commercial operators a full portfolio of support services, including material distribution, maintenance, overhaul & repair, aircraft modifications and life-cycle support. Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacture and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.
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Sikorsky S-70i Black Hawk in PZL Mielec