Economy, Domestic Economy

Investment Opportunities Series: Light, Ultra-Light Aircraft Production

Investment Opportunities Series: Light, Ultra-Light Aircraft ProductionInvestment Opportunities Series: Light, Ultra-Light Aircraft Production

Light aircraft is a plane that has a maximum gross takeoff weight of about 5.6 tons or less, while ultra-light refers to lightweight single-seat aircraft used for sport and recreation.

The many uses of light aircraft include aerial surveying, such as monitoring pipelines, and passenger operations, such as feeding, which is delivering passengers to major airlines’ hubs from surrounding communities without sufficient demand to attract mainline service.

Light aircraft are also used for marketing purposes, such as banner towing and skywriting, sightseeing and photography.

The Persian daily Forsat-e Emrooz recently published an article on production of light and ultra-light aircraft and the sector’s investment potential in Iran.

  Investment Requirements and Potential

According to the managing director of Saba Aviation Industries Company, Seyyed Javad ibn al-Reza, a 600-square-meter plot of land is required to set up an indoor production plant and a runway.

He added that the required machinery such as pressing and cutting equipment can be easily acquired from domestic producers.

The industry expert advised potential investors to set up their production lines in cities other than Tehran, where purchasing a plot of land is considerably cheaper and easier, and said an initial capital of at least $555,000 is required to cover all the basic expenditures.

The bulk of the initial expenses, according to ibn al-Reza, lies further ahead after setting up the production plant.

“After designing the aircraft, the producer must manufacture at least three prototypes and test their functionality in harsh and meticulously controlled environments,” he said.

The managing director noted that the three prototypes will most likely become battered and unusable following the testing procedure.

According to ibn al-Reza, there are currently only two light and ultra-light aircraft producers active in Iran, notwithstanding the military sector.

“This underscores the sector’s untapped potential,” he said.

Underlining the sector’s investment potential, Mohammad Qamarsourat, an aviation industry expert, described the value added of aircraft manufacture as “significantly high”.

“For instance, the value of a very simple aluminum piece, initially costing about $5, increases more than 15 times when used in light and ultra-light aircraft manufacture. If used in the production of a full-size, commercial airplanes, the figure rises up to 400 times,” Qamarsourat said.