Airbus Helicopters’ business in Japan is gaining ground with two new orders and two new deliveries earlier this year. Currently the leader in the Japanese civil and parapublic helicopter market with over 50% market share, Airbus Helicopters plans to increase its position along with the expected growth of the Japanese fleet by 2% per annum over the next 20 years.

The first contract was signed with Excel Air Services, a long-time customer, for an H135 helicopter equipped with Helionix avionics. This new aircraft, which will be dedicated to reporting missions, will be added to the operator’s existing Airbus fleet, which currently includes an AS355N, AS350B2, AS350B3 and an H135 with a Herm├Ęs layout. The second contract was signed with a new client, the Hokkaido government, who ordered an AS365N3 + helicopter. The aircraft will be dedicated to rescue missions and assistance activities in the region and will play an important role in northern Japan, known for its vast fields and difficult winter conditions.

In addition to these orders, Airbus delivered an AS365N3 + helicopter to the Fukuoka City Fire Department and Kumamoto Prefecture, respectively, for firefighting, search and rescue missions and emergency support. “The orders and the successive deliveries mark a good beginning of year in Japan, as we continue to strengthen our relations in the long term” indicates Olivier Tillier, General Manager of Airbus Helicopters in Japan. FV