AAR Lands Supply Chain Deal with Kenya Airways with Assist from the U.S. Commerce Department
Obama administration’s “Doing Business in Africa” initiative scores first aviation industry win; helps Chicago-based company land multi-million dollar deal to support 737NG aircraft
WOOD DALE, Illinois – AAR (NYSE: AIR), a global aerospace, government and defense contractor, has become the first aviation company to land a multi-year deal under the Obama administration’s “Doing Business in Africa” initiative. AAR is announcing a five-year multi-million dollar agreement with Kenya Airways to provide power-by-the-hour component support for its fleet of 737NG aircraft. AAR will place inventory on site in Nairobi while offering additional rotable pool support from its newly established supply chain hub in Brussels.
With assistance from U.S. Department of Commerce leadership and staff in Washington, D.C., Chicago, and the U.S. Embassy in Kenya,AAR’s top executives were able to connect with key government and business officials beginning last year during a visit to Nairobi, Kenya; meet legal requirements; establish business protocols; and cultivate relationships. The successful advocacy strategy was also supported by several inter-agency partners including the State Department.
“The advocacy and access AAR gained through the Commerce Department’s program gave us an advantage in the face of stiff competition from European companies,” said AAR CORP. Chairman and CEO David P. Storch.“The administration’s support was key to enabling us to navigate the business landscape. This deal with Kenya Airways has helped to progress AAR’s expansion across the African continent.”
Doing Business in Africa (DBIA), first announced in December 2012, was designed to close the opportunity gap between American business and emerging markets in Africa, home to seven of the fastest-growing economies in the world. Obama administration efforts include enhanced outreach from Commerce and interagency partners to provide American companies with leads and introductions; and advocate for and connect businesses with distributors and potential customers.
“The success of AAR in Kenya is an excellent example of how the National Export Initiative is working to help U.S. businesses leverage new export opportunities in emerging markets and around the world,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. “I know from my recent trade mission that many U.S. companies are selling to Africa, but it can be a challenging market for many American businesses. That is why the Commerce Department is assisting American businesses as they navigate new markets, reach new customers, and develop new opportunities in existing markets. When U.S. companies succeed, the benefits are mutually shared in the form of new economic opportunity at home and abroad.”
This deal builds on AAR’s recent progress in establishing a foothold in Africa. Last year, AAR fulfilled a contract to service landing gear on Kenya Airways’ Boeing 777s. AAR also supplies cargo systems for South African Airways and participated in the MRO Africa Conference and Exhibition in Ethiopia, focused on the build-out of Africa’s aviation industry.
“Through efforts like these, Americans and Africans can begin to understand the mutually beneficial relationships both our economies need to sustain and grow,” said Kenya Airways CEO Titus Naikuni. “We appreciate the Obama administration’s help in connecting us with AAR’s services that will reduce our costs so we can continue to grow.”
AAR is a global aftermarket solutions company that employs more than 6,000 people in over 20 countries. Based in Wood Dale, Illinois, AAR supports commercial aviation and government customers through two operating segments: Aviation Services and Expeditionary Services. AAR’s Aviation Services include inventory management; parts supply; OEM parts distribution; aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul; engineering services and component repair. AAR’s Expeditionary Services include airlift operations; mobility systems; and command and control centers in support of military and humanitarian missions. More information can be found at www.aarcorp.com.
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This press release contains certain statements relating to future results, which are forward-looking statements as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on beliefs of Company management, as well as assumptions and estimates based on information currently available to the Company, and are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from historical results or those anticipated, including those factors discussed under Item 1A, entitled “Risk Factors”, included in the Company’s Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended May 31, 2018. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize adversely, or should underlying assumptions or estimates prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described. These events and uncertainties are difficult or impossible to predict accurately and many are beyond the Company’s control. The Company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of such statements or to reflect the occurrence of anticipated or unanticipated events. For additional information, see the comments included in AAR’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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