Editor’s comment: The collaboration game

Inflight’s Kimberley Young provides a summary of the latest happenings across the IFEC and cabin technology industry.

It would seem collaboration is the name of the game this week. A series of partnerships have been announced recently, across industry sectors, as companies link up to pursue innovation and expand their reach.

At the Zhuhai Airshow in China, AVIC Cabin Systems (ACS), a subsidiary of Aviation Industry Corporation of China, and Diehl Aviation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) outlining the intention to collaborate in a number of fields in the Chinese market. The companies say the agreement will enable the partners to join forces to cope with the growing demand for aircraft cabin products – particularly in the growing aviation market in China.

Further details of the future co-operation are yet to be decided, but the agreement covers a particular focus on joint procurement and supply chain activities, joint manufacturing projects and marketing activities for cabin interiors projects in the country.

The International Air Transport Association suggested in its latest passenger forecast update that China will displace the United States as the world’s largest aviation market in the mid-2020s. With IATA suggesting: “The rebalancing of China’s economy towards consumption will support strong passenger demand over the long term.” ACS’s and Diehl Aviation’s decision to join forces in this market may prove a wise decision.

At the Future Travel Experience (FTE) Asia Expo in Singapore, digEcor and Jamco Aero Design and Engineering (JADE) formed a partnership to drive more efficient retrofits. JADE will play a key role in retrofitting aircraft with digEcor’s Cabin Technology products in the Asia-Pacific region.

Stu McGraw, digEcor’s regional sales manager – Asia Pacific, commented: “Whilst we have worked on retrofit programmes both independently and through integrators previously, this partnership with JADE increases the amount of opportunities available to both partners – good news for us all.”

Meanwhile, Honeywell Aerospace has become a global value-added reseller of Inmarsat’s GX Aviation in-flight broadband solution (pictured) and will now market GX Aviation to airlines worldwide through the GoDirect retail services business.

The agreement builds on an established partnership between the pair, as Honeywell manufactures the JetWave hardware for GX Aviation and sells Inmarsat’s JetConneX in-flight Wi-Fi service for the business aviation market, through its GoDirect retail services business.

“Inmarsat and Honeywell have an extremely successful track record of working together in the fast-growing in-flight connectivity market,” said Philip Balaam, president of Inmarsat Aviation. “We are delighted to now extend this partnership. Honeywell’s unique depth of experience in this field and their close relationships with airlines make them a perfect fit as a value-added reseller of GX Aviation.”

So it seems that collaborations are the strategy to follow if the activity of the past week is anything to go by. Across a range of industry sectors – from cabins to connectivity – companies are seeking out partnerships to grow their businesses and to prepare for the predicted future expansion of the aviation industry.

Don’t forget to take a look at our summary of the Inflight Asia-Pacific 2018 workshop for an insight into the topics covered by our panelists.

Image: Inmarsat GX Aviation


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