THC (The Helicopter Company) will further expand its fleet of Leonardo AW139 intermediate twin engine helicopters to reinforce search and rescue (SAR), Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and Corporate transport in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
At Heli-Expo 2023 (7-9 March) in Atlanta, Georgia, the Company announced its willingness to engage negotiations to procure additional six units to the existing fleet plus 20 options. By the time all these latest AW139s are delivered, THC will have a total fleet of 49 AW139s carrying out a range of missions including emergency medical service, search and rescue and corporate transport in the country.
Gian Piero Cutillo, MD Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We’re pleased with the level of confidence shown by a leading operator like THC in our technology and mission capabilities by this latest announcement of fleet expansion plan. The AW139 is supporting their service capability growth programme for key missions, including SAR, EMS and Corporate transport and we’re proud to play our role for the communities they will serve.”
The world’s most important helicopter programme since its certification in 2004 and the bestselling type in its category, the AW139 has logged orders for nearly 1300 units from more than 290 customers in over 80 countries to date. The fleet of more than 1130 units in service has logged in excess of 3.6 million flight hours to date. The type has proven extremely successful in the Middle East with over 170 units sold across the region for the widest scope of missions including corporate transport, emergency medical service, search and rescue, law enforcement, offshore transport, government duties.
The AW139 delivers outstanding capabilities, technology and safety to meet stringent requirements from operators for tasks in harsh conditions to maximize effectiveness. The type features state-of-the-art avionics with advanced navigation and collision avoidance systems to enhance situational awareness and reduce pilots’ workload, unmatched speed, power margins and overall performance, the widest cabin in its category featuring high modularity for rapid reconfiguration, a unique 60+ min run-dry capable main gear box for enhanced reliability and safety and up to 1000 certified kits.
The Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) established THC as part of its strategy to activate new sectors that meet the growing demands for commercial helicopters in Saudi Arabia. THC also supports the realization of Vision 2030 and generates long-term commercial returns. THC is the Kingdom’s first and only commercial helicopter operator and has been operating since mid-2019.
Leonardo, a global high-technology company, is among the top world players in Aerospace, Defense and Security and Italy’s main industrial company. Organized into five business divisions, Leonardo has a significant industrial presence in Italy, the United Kingdom, Poland and the USA, where it also operates through subsidiaries that include Leonardo DRS (defense electronics), and joint ventures and partnerships: ATR, MBDA, Telespazio, Thales Alenia Space and Avio.
Leonardo competes in the most important international markets by leveraging its areas of technological and product leadership (Helicopters, Aircraft, Aerostructures, Electronics, Cyber Security and Space). In 2020, Leonardo recorded consolidated revenues of €13.4 billion and invested €1.6 billion in Research and Development.