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Change for the good

Following its acquisition by DAE, Joramco is finding new found success. Ian Harbison reports from Amman
In late 2016, Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) announced that it was acquiring an 80% stake in the company (the balance is held by Royal Jordanian Airlines). As a major leasing company with a large fleet and a desire to become involved in the total life cycle of aircraft, an MRO facility was a logical choice. It was also a good choice for Joramco, as it is seen as a long term commitment and there is an understanding of the aviation business. 
A year after the takeover, Jeff Wilkinson joined as CEO, moving from Etihad Airways Engineering, and the revitalisation of the company really got under way. This covers four main areas: capabilities, facilities, staff and the Joramco brand.
Work with Boeing fleet has included Jordanian Civil Aviation Authority (JCARC) and FAA approval for Boeing 787 C checks, with the most recent addition being EASA Boeing 787 approval. Joramco also added 737 MAX approval to complement its existing NG/Classic. The MAX approval allowed Joramco to assist long term customers with their MAX 9 aircraft into service programmes and to install IFE and satcoms. Joramco are also a Boeing Gold Care base maintenance partner for 737 MAX and 787, and will soon add 777 approval, with the first aircraft due to arrive in 2019.
With Airbus, all aircraft except the A380 can be covered, going back to A300/310. Recently, staff have carried out the A320neo differential course and LEAP-1A training in preparation for that aircraft, and an A330/340 main landing gear replacement capability has been added.
Beyond airframes, the company has a close relationship with neighbouring Jordan Airmotive for engine work, and with Safran (wheels and carbon brakes), Eaton and SATTO (plastic repairs). MoUs have been signed with several organisations to enhance backshop capabilities including major repair of composite structures, and Fraser Currie, CCO, expects similar agreements to be reached with other OEMs to increase capabilities further.
Multiple changes in the hangars has seen improved light levels, A new white resin floor covering laid down, with overhead LED lamps, while yellow polycarbonate glazing in the main hangar has been replaced with transparent material. Some office modules in hangar 1 were removed to allow additional widebody access, while more efficient use of space in hangars 2 and 3 saw an additional narrowbody aircraft slotted in around a widebody, increasing total slots from 12 to 15.
Ground support equipment is being upgraded, with new passenger door access steps and 737 access platforms already in use and all access stands have been replaced by equipment from UK-based Semmco.  A mobile inflatable shelter has been acquired, which increases efficient of check planning by allowing paint applications to be carried out on nacelles without having to stop other work on the aircraft. 
Safety standards have been raised with new fall arrest systems from WinGrip and Mobile Elevated Work Platforms and a Safety Management System has just been launched. In the structures shop, $100,000 of new machine tools have been  installed, while a dispensing system from ATS will allow staff to access consumable items without having to leave the hangar floor to visit the stores. Similarly, mobile work stations are being introduced, providing access to all the necessary information next to the aircraft. This is part of an expansion of 5S and Lean processes that has already achieved an increase of 20% in hangar efficiency.
With so many changes taking place, a Transformation Management Organisation (TMO) was established, headed by Mike Ainsworth as Director. This is looking after some 70 projects, ranging from major items like 737 MAX approval to regular FOD walks on the ramp to suggestion boxes throughout the facility. >>

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