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Talk on Rolls Royce in Singapore and Seletar

Tanglin Club - 27 July 2011 - by John Horsburgh, COO Rolls Royce Aerospace Singapore


Rolls-Royce has grown its presence in Singapore considerably in recent years and the company is already a major player in Singapore’s aerospace industry, accounting for over 15 per cent of the country’s aerospace output. Through the company’s joint ventures with key local industry partner, Singapore Airlines Engineering Company and activities in the Energy and Marine sectors, Rolls-Royce currently employs over 1,400 people in Singapore. It also accounts for approximately five per cent of the total aerospace industry workforce.

In 2007, Rolls-Royce announced plans to build its most modern engine assembly and test facility in Singapore, incorporating the lean assembly and flow line operation principles the company has developed, which ensures significant operational efficiencies and improved service quality. The engine and test facility, along with the wide chord fan blade factory, will be part of a wider campus that will also house the Advanced Technology Centre, regional training and conference centre and shared services including the Singapore business headquarters, HR department and supply chain.

The speaker will discuss the development of Roll Royce businesses and facilities in Singapore, in particular the new facilities at Seletar.

SPEAKER:  John Horsburgh

John has a  Management career spanning over 35 years, predominantly in transportation, and in particular repair and overhaul. Twenty two of these years have been spent outside of UK, seven of which were spent in Singapore from 1977 to 1984 with the Sembawang Group. After leaving Singapore, John was a focal player in the commercialisation of the ex-Royal Naval Dockyard in Gibraltar. Following his return to UK in the mid eighties, was involved with the Contractorised Management of Rosyth Royal Dockyard and with specific responsibilities for Project Management of the Hunter Killer Nuclear Submarine Refit Programme.

After having gained a MBA from Strathclyde University in Scotland, continued his focus on Repair and Overhaul in Aero Engines, from the position of General Manager to President and Managing Director of the now GE Caledonian facility in Prestwick, Scotland. This period saw the company through four changes of United States ownerships yet still grow in profitability, from an employer of 750 to 1200 persons and with an international reputation based on a Quality Product and a Quality Service!

He joined Rolls-Royce in 1999, the time of Singapore Aero Engine Services Pte Ltd (SAESL)’s incorporation as CEO. SAESL is a joint venture between Rolls-Royce, Hong Kong Aero Engine Services Ltd and SIA Engineering Company.

From January 2008, John has been COO Aerospace Singapore with primary responsibility; the establishment of the Rolls-Royce Trent Engine Assembly & Test Facility at Seletar. Supplemented in June 2009 with responsibility for the Commercial Engine Fan Blade manufacturing facility. As well as maintaining oversight of the two joint venture companies in Singapore – SAESL and IECO

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