CHENNAI/HYDERABAD: Eurocopter, a part of Airbus manufacturer and aerospace giant EADS, is aiming to achieve the number one position in the civil and parapublic helicopter market in India by 2015.
The company, which entered the Indian market in October 2010, currently ranks number two in terms of market share (35 per cent) in the country next to Bell Helicopter (45 per cent market share).
“We aim to lead the Indian civilian and military helicopter market by 2015 by increasing the market share from the current 35 per cent,” Xavier Hay, chief executive officer of Eurocopter India, told mediapersons here on Tuesday.
There are two factors that affect the Indian helicopter growth story — inadequate infrastructure and the current laws. For example, to get permission for helicopter landing in any public place, apart from airports, a 48-hour prior permission is required, he said.
India is still at an early stage to adopt helicopter services. There are plenty of emerging areas in the country that need to be developed, including aerial and utility work, emergency and medical services, he said.
The market in India is currently pegged at 260 helicopters and is expected to grow 20 per cent year-on-year. “India has a huge potential to grow. It’s anticipated that over the next five years, the current market will double,” he said.
Eurocopter aims to sell 20-25 helicopters a year here. “We are seeing great opportunity. Apart from focusing on our core segments – VIPs, oil and gas industry, and passenger –, we will look at emerging segments to expand our presence and increase market share,” he said.
Eurocopter also has plans to set up an engineering centre in Bangalore by next year to support the company’s design, development and industrial activities, along with the opening of a new commercial office in Mumbai.
The company is here to participate in the third edition of India Aviation, an international exhibition and conference on civil aviation, that begins from March 14. At India Aviation 2012, Eurocopter will display models from its two helicopter families – Ecureuil and Dauphin.