GENEVA, Switzerland, May 16, 2011 — Cessna Aircraft Company, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, continues to expand its industry-leading customer support services in Europe with new facilities, enhanced parts distribution and more service options for Citation owners.
“Cessna continues to invest in customer service and continues to lead the industry in every part of the world in developing new service delivery methods,” said Brad Thress, Cessna senior vice president, Customer Service.
Cessna broke ground earlier this year on a new Cessna Citation Service Center in Valencia, Spain, to augment the Citation Service Center in Paris in supporting some 1,300 Citations in Europe. The new facility will include 6,000 square meters (64,000 square feet) of hangar space and about 8,200 square meters (88,264 square feet) of office, storage and shop space.
The first cadre of nearly 20 employees has been hired and the employees are already in FlightSafety maintenance training in Spain taking courses for each Citation model. The employees will then be assigned to a year-long, hands-on program at Cessna service centers around the United States, assuring service at the new facility will come from experienced technicians from the start when it opens in the third quarter of 2012.
Cessna also opened this year a new line maintenance facility in Prague, sharing hangar space at sister company Bell Helicopter’s service facility at Prague Ruzyně International Airport (PRG/LKPR). Cessna and Bell are Textron companies.
Certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency in February, the center has already begun performing scheduled and unscheduled maintenance operations. The new Citation service center, sharing nearly 3,000 square meters (32,000 square feet) of shop space, is staffed and managed by Cessna.
Cessna is increasing the number of parts at its European parts distribution facility in Amsterdam, which it also shares with Bell. Thress said the company plans this year to increase part numbers available at the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol facility from 3,500 to more than 10,000.
Thress said Cessna has revolutionized customer service delivery options with its ServiceDirect program in the U.S. and is expanding the program around the world, particularly in Europe. Options included in ServiceDirect include the popular Mobile Service Units, AOG go-teams and the Air Response Team, HomeService and temporary personnel support.
Cessna is adding a second Mobile Service Unit in Europe to its current unit based in France. The new one will be based in another part of Europe but the exact location has yet to be determined. MSUs are full-size service trucks equipped with tooling to perform a variety of Citation scheduled and unscheduled maintenance tasks up to engine removal. In addition to the two European trucks, Cessna has 11 MSUs in operation in the U.S. with two more planned to launch by early June.
On April 4, Cessna also expanded its operation at the Citation Service Center at Paris Le Bourget Airport to around-the-clock, one of the only business jet maintenance facilities in Europe operating 24 hours a day. The change entailed reordering work flow to ensure shorter maintenance events — less customer downtime — in addition to changing work hours.
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