DOHA, QATAR - Gulf International Services (“GIS” or “the group”; QE: GISS), the largest service group in Qatar, with interests in a broad cross-section of industries, ranging from insurance, re-insurance, fund management, onshore and offshore drilling, accommodation barge, helicopter transportation, and catering services, is pleased to announce an order for an AW189 EASA CS-FSTD(H) FFS Level C Simulator by Gulf Helicopters from AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, supporting the company’s pilot development training needs for the recently announced purchase of 15 AW189 medium twin-engine helicopters.
The simulator, growing the AW189 global training reach across the Middle Eastern region, is to be delivered in Offshore Oil and Gas configuration and is set to expand Gulf Helicopters’ training capability as an AgustaWestland Authorised Training Centre (ATC) and regional hub. Doha-based Gulf Helicopters provides training services using an AW139 Level B Full Flight Simulator (FFS) certified by the UK’s CAA as a FFS as per JAR-FSTD H to Level B which incorporates the latest technical advancements in flight simulation and “state-of-the-art” graphic displays. This planned continued growth of Gulf Helicopters as an AgustaWestland ATC further cements the strong relationship between the two companies, who will now jointly offer AW139 and AW189 pilot training services to the market, strengthening the growing global support and training footprint for AgustaWestland aircraft.
John Ponsonby, Senior Vice President Global Customer Support and Training, AgustaWestland said “We are delighted to sign this contract and look forward to growing our partnership with Gulf Helicopters in the region, extending the scope of services offered by our global network of Authorised Training Centres. Delivering high quality training services, Gulf Helicopters is already a highly respected provider of training in the Middle East region, which is an important market for AgustaWestland and the AW189.”
Mohamed Al Mohannadi, Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Helicopters said “Gulf helicopters has achieved a prominent place for itself as a provider of helicopter pilots training services for the AW139 in the Middle East and even exceeded the reach to countries in Europe, Asia and Africa. This contract for the supply of full-Motion Flight Simulator for the new AgustaWestland helicopter AW189 is the latest of a series of successes achieved by Gulf Helicopters in the area of training in addition to the continuity of the perfect form of cooperation between Gulf Helicopters and AgustaWestland over the years”.
The AW189 was designed in response to the growing market demand for a versatile, affordable, multi-role medium helicopter. The new 8-tonne class, twin engine helicopter is optimized for long range missions and orders for 130 helicopters, including options and framework contracts have been placed, making it the outright market leader in its class. The AW189 received EASA certification on 7th February 2014 and the first deliveries to operators will commence in the comings weeks.
Through the training academies in Italy, UK, USA, Poland and Malaysia, AgustaWestland has an extensive track record in successfully training both commercial and military pilots and maintainers from all over the world. Training programs are tailored to meet a customer's individual needs and operational requirements using established analytical processes. Training solutions and services are designed, developed and delivered throughout the entire lifecycle of the product to meet the demands of long-term operational support. Extensive use is made of new technology learning environments, web based multi-media services and an expanding range of synthetic training devices for regional and distributed learning, part-task maintenance and procedures trainers through to tactical and full mission and flight simulators.
Gulf Helicopters is a major AW139 operator and will receive the first two of its 15 AW189 aircraft this year to support the company’s offshore oil and gas operations. Gulf Helicopters is owned by Gulf International Services. It has been providing helicopter services since 1970 working with companies throughout the Middle East, India, Far East and North Africa. Gulf Helicopters has its own in-house maintenance facility with a team of highly qualified and experienced engineers undertaking fleet maintenance and modification work.
Gulf Helicopters is also an authorized service centre for AgustaWestland for their AW139s and also one of the first companies to have an AW139 full flight simulator its own and third party use. Gulf Helicopters is also a FAA approved Repair Station and EASA approved Part 145 Maintenance Organisation. The Company is also an EASA approved Part 147 Training Organisation for the AW139.