Press Releases

600th Eurocopter Helicopter Delivered into the Canadian Market

First New AS350 B3 Helicopter for Héli-Inter Inc. of Quebec

600th helicopterFort Erie, ON – Eurocopter Canada Limited (ECL) delivered the 600th helicopter today for the Canadian market to Héli-Inter Inc., a major helicopter charter company headquartered in St-Hubert, Quebec. The powerful Eurocopter AS350 B3 light helicopter will be flown primarily in Northern Quebec, supporting mineral exploration and development programs.

“We are delighted to reach the 600th helicopter milestone in supplying Héli-Inter with a new dual hydraulics AS350 B3 aircraft that highlights our helicopters’ ability to exceed Canadian requirements for maximum dependability and cost effectiveness,” said Mr. Guy Joannes, President & CEO, ECL. “Each delivery also demonstrates that our helicopters offer the payload and performance required to work in Canada, whose vast distances and extreme weather make it one of the most challenging operating environments in the world.”

The delivery of this dual hydraulics AS350 B3 to Héli-Inter is also another milestone in our long term relationship with Groupe Placement B. Allard, the Quebec-based aviation holding company that is parent to Héli-Inter and five other companies flying a total of 86 helicopters – Canada’s second largest fleet.

“We added the AS350 B3 as the next logical step in the development of our helicopter business,” said Benoît Allard, owner of Groupe Placement B. Allard. “Our companies already have 49 AS350 helicopters in their fleet and we have acquired considerable expertise with these helicopters, thus re-enforcing the safety and reliability of our operations.”

With the new Eurocopter AS350 B3 delivery, Héli-Inter will operate a fleet of 44 helicopters, including 23 single-engine Eurocopter AStars/Ecureuils and two twin-engine AS355 TwinStars/Ecureuils. The company has two operating bases located in Malartic in the Abitibi region of Northwest Quebec, and Radisson, Quebec, two well-known mining regions.

Groupe Placement B. Allard subsidiaries include Helicraft, Héli-Excel, Héli-Wask, and Héli-Inter which service Quebec, Ontario and the Eastern Arctic; Coast-to-Coast Helicopters Inc. and Mustang Helicopters based in Alberta; and Heli-Can in Latin America. The group also owns Exact Air, a fixed-wing flying school and scheduled and charter service.

“With the introduction to our fleet of this new and more powerful aircraft, we can further fulfill all our customers’ expectations,” said Denis Simard, CEO of Groupe Placement B. Allard. “This acquisition complements our existing fleet and will allow us more flexibility with what we can offer to our customers.”

A pre-owned AS350 B3 was recently acquired by the group to work in Chile from a base serving the local mining and forestry industry working in the rugged Andes Mountains.

Eurocopter holds a 51% share of the turbine helicopter fleet registered to Quebec companies as of December 2010.

The AS350 B3 is the top of the range “high performance” member of the popular single-engine AS350 family, with unmatched performance and reliability. It has a top speed of 140 knots and the capacity to carry a pilot and five passengers in the transportation role or external loads of up to 1,400 kg (3,086 lb.) beneath the helicopter on a cargo hook.

The AS350 B3’s 847-shp Safran Arriel 2B1 turbo shaft engine provides the helicopter with the ability to lift maximum loads under hottest summer operating conditions, providing excellent utility.

This aircraft is equipped with a number of Eurocopter Canada designed options, easing operations to perform the most demanding utility missions. These options include the enlarged long lining floor window, the aft cargo door hinge kit and the left hand and right hand cargo pods that increase the cargo compartments by 80% over the standard AS350 compartment.

In regards to operational safety, Eurocopter Canada is delivering proximity training solutions to Héli-Inter Inc. in supplying Aircraft Maintenance Engineer training at Saint-Hubert, QC École nationale d’aérotechnique and dedicated onsite pilot training.

The powerful engine features a dual FADEC (Full-Authority Digital Engine Control) and a dual hydraulic system for power management.

In the cockpit, the AS350 B3 provides enhanced safety and reduced workload with the Vehicle and Engine Multifunction Display (VEMD) for pilots.

About Héli-Inter Inc.

Héli-Inter Inc. specializes in the transportation of passengers and goods. The company focuses on Helicopter sling load flights, aerial photography, medical evaluation, patrol and maintenance of high voltage power lines, firefighting and mining. Héli-Inter Inc. employs 80 people and has a fleet of 43 helicopters. The company is headquartered in Saint-Hubert, QC and has two operational bases located in Malartic in the Abitibi Region and Radisson in James Bay. Héli-Inter Inc. is a member of Groupe Placement B. Allard Inc. which is comprised of the following divisions; Coast to Coast Helicopters Inc., Exact Air, Heli-Can, Héli-Excel and Héli-Wask Mustang Helicopters. The company also operates a flight school under the banner of Helicraft (www.helicraft.qc.ca).

Corporate Headquarters: 6500 de la Savane, St-Hubert (Québec) J3Y 8Y9.
Tel : (450) 468-3431

Operational Base: 10, route 117, C.P. 700 Malartic (Québec) J0Y 1Z0
Tel.: (819) 757-3030 / E-mail: info@heli-inter.com

About ECL and Eurocopter Group

Eurocopter Canada Limited (www.eurocopter.ca) is a subsidiary of Eurocopter. Eurocopter Canada – headquartered in Fort Erie, Ontario with operations in Richmond, BC and Montreal, QC – has a customer support network that spans the entire country. Eurocopter Canada celebrated 2009 as its 25th anniversary year. Established in 1992, the Franco-German-Spanish Eurocopter Group is a Division of EADS, a world leader in aerospace, defence and related services. The Eurocopter Group employs approx. 15,600 people. In 2009, Eurocopter confirmed its position as the world’s No. 1 helicopter manufacturer in the civil and parapublic market, with a turnover of 4.6 billion Euros, orders for 344 new helicopters, and a 52 percent market share in the civil and parapublic sectors. Overall, the Group’s products account for 30 percent of the total world helicopter fleet. Its strong worldwide presence is ensured by its 25 subsidiaries and participations on five continents, along with a dense network of distributors, certified agents and maintenance centres. More than 10,500 Eurocopter helicopters are currently in service with over 2,800 customers in more than 140 countries. Eurocopter offers the largest civil and military helicopter range in the world.

For more information, please contact:

Laura SENECAL
Tel: + 905 871-7772
Fax: + 905 871-3599
laura.senecal[at]eurocopter.ca

Eurocopter Canada Limited

Christina GOTZHEIN
Tel: + 49 (0) 89 60 00 64 88
Mob.: + 49 (0) 151 14 22 92 43
christina.gotzhein[at]eurocopter.com
Eurocopter Group

M. Denis SIMARD
Tel: 450 463-3431
d.simard[at]heli-inter.com
Groupe Placement B. Allard

Pascale FLEURY
Tel : + 33 (0) 4 42 85 62 38
Mob : + 33 (0) 6 32 54 05 02
pascale.fleury[at]eurocopter.com
Eurocopter Group

Website: www.eurocopter.com, www.heli-inter.com