MTU Maintenance Zhuhai is expecting its business to grow about 12% annually, a figure that could increase further should it decide to add more engine types to its portfolio.
The 50-50 joint venture between MTU Aero Engines and China Southern Airlines last year handled 200 shop visits of International Aero Engines V2500 and CFM International CFM56 series engines.
"We expect the overall aviation market in China to grow at 10%, and about 12% for MROs. If you put that into perspective, we should reach 300 shop visits in four or five years, and that is without adding more engine types," says its president and CEO Frank Bodenhage in an interview with Flightglobal Pro.
He adds that the firm is now looking at the feasibility of adding more engine types. The four being considered are: GE Aviation CF34 and GEnx, and the in-development CFM International Leap X and the Pratt & Whitney PW1000 geared turbofan.
"It's a natural development. If you have the V2500 and CFM56 engines, they will over time be replaced by the CF34 and GEnx, so we should go into the business," says Bodenhage. "The other two types could also fit well into our portfolio because the technology is very similar to what we're doing today."
He adds: "We will see growth even without these engine types, but we're at the place where we can do even more."
MTU's Zhuhai facility was also expanded last year, increasing its capability to handle 300 shop visits annually, up from 200. The facility completed its 1,000th engine overhaul in 2011 and the figure has since grown to 1,400.
China Southern accounts for about 50% of its business while third party work from airlines around the world make up the rest.