MUMBAI --- Viking Air Limited of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, and Mahindra Aerospace Private Limited of Bengaluru, India have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to form a strategic alliance to seize opportunities arising out of India’s growing regional air connectivity requirements. Signing of the MOU is timely given the focus being put on Indo-Canadian relations during Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s trip to India.
India’s diverse market landscape offers numerous options for Viking and Mahindra Aerospace to leverage their unique and complementary resources for a mutually beneficial collaboration to develop regional air transportation solutions.
Under this alliance, Mahindra Aerospace and Viking will support each other’s non-competing aircraft business to boost market penetration in identified territories and provide potential customers with multiple options based on specific operational requirements.
Viking produces the Twin Otter Series 400, a 19-passenger, twin-engine utility turboprop aircraft that is world-renowned for its versatility and capability of operating in extreme environments from multiple landing surfaces, including water. Mahindra Aerospace currently produces the Airvan 8, an 8-seat utility piston aircraft, and the Airvan 10, a 10-seat utility turboprop aircraft, and plans to offer ski and float-equipped variants of both aircraft in due course.
The multiple seating and landing gear configurations of the Airvan 8, Airvan 10, and Twin Otter Series 400 offered through Viking and Mahindra Aerospace provides several solutions especially well-suited to India’s varied geography, operating conditions, and regional connectivity requirements.
“Viking sees enormous market potential for the Series 400 Twin Otter in India, with a particular emphasis on the seaplane variant as it provides an unmatched transportation solution for servicing India’s thousands of kilometers of coastline and river systems,” commented David Curtis, Viking President & CEO. “We are confident that our alliance with Mahindra Group, such a well-established and well-regarded company, will provide the necessary traction the Series 400 deserves in India.”
Arvind Mehra, Executive Director & CEO, Mahindra Aerospace said, “Viking and Mahindra Aerospace have a natural fit when it comes to the supplying utility aircraft in point-to-point connectivity. These products complement each other well and offer our customers a wide choice depending on the size and scale of their operations. We are sure this is just a beginning and can open up many other opportunities for collaboration, including product development and support.”
Mahindra Aerospace has led the Mahindra Group’s foray into utility aircraft and aerostructure manufacturing. Its utility aircraft business, based in Australia, currently produces the Airvan 8, the most capable, rugged and versatile utility aircraft in its class. Certified in many countries, over 240 are in service. Mahindra Aerospace has also developed a next-gen 10-seat turboprop, the Airvan 10, which has been Type Certified in the USA and Australia.
Mahindra Aerospace also operates an aerostructures manufacturing business, based at Bengaluru, which produces aircraft parts, components & sub-assemblies for supply directly to global OEMs and their leading suppliers.