A New Rising Player in the MRO Ground Support Market

We have promoted the Cargo Aids brand for over 50 years holding a niche spot in the aerospace sector serving the military helicopter market. David Mooney, Managing Director, Drallim Group, reflects on the company’s success and looks forward to a positive future. The Drallim Group product range has been focused on underslung Cargo Hooks and associated lashings and cabin fitments which the company have supplied to the UK MoD and numerous military agencies worldwide. The company is predominantly an engineering, equipment & systems manufacturer with a broad portfolio of products and services historically strong across the Aerospace, Industrial and Utility industries.

Building on these experiences the company expanded its sphere of operations to encompass the design and manufacture of custom ground support equipment and material handling solutions serving the MRO sector, this broadening of commercial activity led to the creation of Drallim Aerospace. Since its formation in 2010 the business has expanded year on year bringing the diverse range of engineering skills within the Drallim Group into play. New product lines have been introduced and fresh customer relations forged as repeat orders continue to drive double digit growth across the sector.

Ground support equipment continues to increase in size, quantity, and complexity especially as we see the modern technology aircraft entering service. New aircraft and engines, such as the Airbus A380, Boeing Dreamliner and the Rolls Royce Trent range of Engines, as well as helicopters such as the Augusta Westland Wildcat and the futuristic Bell 525 all herald innovative approaches to MRO activities and the required support equipment. Increasingly closer relationships are being demanded between airlines, manufacturers, and vendors for design and procurement of such equipment. Certainly, there are strong signs that the economic upturn we have all been waiting for has quietly arrived as activity in this sector continues to grow quarter by quarter.

Quite often MRO activities originate from abroad but must be supported locally. While many suppliers have a comprehensive spares and repairs arrangement, there will always be the urgent and unusual situations that arise. Our OEM support service is especially useful in this case – we can offer rapid manufacture of parts to print or copy parts to meet acceptance standards, for example, control cables, lighting and electrical panels. A full repair can also be carried out where practical, to restore operations on an urgent basis. Modern MRO practices are lean centric operations with a strong focus on value through less work. This means more traditional in-house services are becoming increasingly outsourced providing opportunity to organisations that are geared to react. Drallim’s niche position is that it separates urgent operational requirements and simple one-off jobs from its mainstream manufacturing thereby offering the MRO organisation a truly dedicated service keyed to their turn-around times. Situations requiring a rapid response – AOGs, UORs and unscheduled obsolescence are all scenarios the company embrace and compete favourably against the more traditional supplier base as they often struggle-to-juggle.

Recently, The Drallim Group received the ESQR European Award for ‘Best Practice’ and has won no less than 21 awards for its business excellence, 3 of which were national awards sponsored by The Manufacturer Magazine in 2008 and 2009 for ‘Leadership and Strategy’, and again in 2011 as ‘Young Manufacturer of the Year’. On reflecting how the company has managed to attract so much attention and sustain its growth throughout a recessionary period, David Mooney concludes: ‘’It’s all about changing the odds in your favour by taking advantage of every opportunity that comes your way and creating optimism and development of a positive attitude. Positivity allows for motivation and high morale and promotes a willingness to perform at a prominent level consistently.’’

With this sort of mantra, it is no wonder Drallim Aerospace has grand expectations for their future.