Under the MOU, Sikorsky and AVIC II will discuss helicopter manufacturing, assembly, flight test, engineering design and analysis, and new product development in the light, intermediate, and medium classes. The companies will also explore establishing Changhe Aircraft Industry Corporation under AVIC II as a second source for the S-76® helicopter airframe.
Sikorsky and AVIC II announced the MOU during a joint press briefing today in Beijing. "We look forward to exploring many potential projects with AVIC II for both the Chinese and international marketplace.
"We are excited about the opportunity to execute projects outlined in the current MOU that create additional areas of cooperation in the future," said Carey Bond, Sikorsky vice president for corporate strategy and advanced programs.
"China is a dynamic country, AVIC II is a company with great technical capabilities, and Sikorsky Aircraft is an international company committed to developing business relationships and strategic partnerships globally," said Steve Estill, Sikorsky vice president and chief marketing officer.
Other potential business opportunities between the companies include aftermarket support and pilot training for the Chinese market.
"We see this MOU as another step toward opening up new markets and business opportunities for both Sikorsky and AVIC II globally. These cooperative agreements will also have a positive impact on Sikorsky's core business in the U.S.," Estill said.
Sikorsky's business relationship with AVIC II dates back more than a decade to the development of the S-92ATM helicopter, the world's newest medium-lift helicopter. Changhe, an AVIC II subsidiary, manufactures the S-92A tail pylon.
Shi Jianzhong, vice president, AVIC II, commented: "AVIC II and Sikorsky have established a good relationship of mutual trust over a collaboration of 12 years. We share a common wish to expand our cooperation in civil helicopters. We see great potential for future collaboration."
Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacturing, and service. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Conn., provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems.