The Lufthansa Technik Group is continuing to expand the capacity of its network of aircraft overhaul facilities in Europe. Before the end of the year, the new overhaul facility in Bulgaria will start work on its first contracts for regional aircraft. Lufthansa Technik Malta will soon be inaugurating a new hangar for overhaul work on aircraft of the Airbus A330/A340 family. And to improve component support in the Italian market, Lufthansa Technik Component Services Milan has commenced operations.
A brand-new member of Lufthansa Technik's global network of base maintenance facilities is Lufthansa Technik Sofia, which is getting ready to perform its first D-check on an Airbus A321 this November. The newly formed company, which currently employs 258 people, will provide maintenance services to customers from Europe, the Middle East and Africa in a two-bay hangar covering 6,000 square meters of floor space. Together with its joint venture partner, Bulgarian Aviation Group, Lufthansa Technik has invested 20 million euros in the new facility. This includes modernising the existing hangar at Sofia airport (Bulgaria's capital city), fitting out the company with the latest equipment, and training the workforce.
The new facility complements the existing European network of maintenance stations for the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 families in Germany, Ireland, Hungary and Malta. The official opening ceremony is scheduled for 28 October.
Another inauguration planned for early 2009 is that of Lufthansa Technik Malta's new hangar for the overhaul of Airbus A330/A340 aircraft. It will enable the 5-year-old company to respond to the growing demand for MRO services for widebody Airbus airliners in addition to its existing base maintenance services for the A320 and Boeing 737 families. When the facility opens, the joint venture between Lufthansa Technik (51%) and Air Malta (49%) will have increased its present workforce from 150 to 274 employees. In the long term, the company plans to create additional job opportunities that will bring the total workforce up to 700 employees and contribute significantly to Malta's economic growth. The new hangar, measuring 90 meters in length and 34 meters in height, covers a surface area of 27,000 square meters and is capable of accommodating two widebody and two narrowbody aircraft at a time, as well as providing space for a number of workshops. Over 90 apprentices being trained by Lufthansa Technik Malta are following courses at the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology, which has invested in new study programmes specifically designed to meet the needs of the aviation industry.
This summer, Lufthansa Technik Component Services Milan kicked off its operations with a staff of ten and a warehouse of 400 square meters. Based at Milan's Malpensa airport, the new company is responsible for providing round-the-clock component support to regional customers. By transferring stocks of aircraft components from their home base to the new warehouse in Milan, airline customers will be able to benefit from an improved availability of spare parts and reduce their own costs for warehouse space and staff.
The Lufthansa Technik Group is one of the worldwide leading OEM-independent providers of aircraft related technical services. With a workforce of 25,000 in 29 subsidiaries in Europe, Asia and the US, Lufthansa Technik achieved total sales of 3.6 billion Euro in 2007. As an internationally licensed repair, production and development organization, Lufthansa Technik offers the complete service portfolio for overhaul, maintenance, repair, modification and completion of aircraft including engines and components.