EINSA: a worldwide presence

posted on 12th September 2022
EINSA: a worldwide presence

David Ayala Galán is the managing director of Madrid, Spain-headquartered EINSA. He explains how the company continues to build on many years of success offering a comprehensive range of GSE into the global civil and military aviation markets

How has EINSA evolved since its establishment over four decades ago?
EINSA is a Spanish company that was founded in 1979 and now has more than 40 years’ experience in the aviation industry. During this time, it has established itself as a leader in the design, development, manufacture, installation and support (including maintenance and upgrading) of the most technologically advanced military and civil GSE.
Over this period of time we have supplied our worldwide customer base with a complete range of equipment, all of which is designed to make operations more efficient at airports and air and naval bases. The wide range of equipment developed and manufactured by EINSA, as well as our vast experience, makes us the only company in the world that can provide integral turnkey solutions for all GSE needed at any military air base or civil airport or by any carrier.
These solutions offer a high degree of commonality of components, technologies and engineering solutions across every piece of equipment, meaning important savings for our customers in terms of logistics and life-cycle costs. Moreover, EINSA has the capacity and the experience to provide solutions for any specific requirement our customers may have at any given time.

Apart from your headquarters in Madrid, do you have any other manufacturing or maintenance/repair facilities elsewhere?
EINSA’s facilities are located in Madrid, very near Barajas Airport. All equipment is designed, developed and manufactured in these facilities.
EINSA has two subsidiary companies to support our businesses in the UK and the US. EINSA UK was founded 17 years ago to assist with a contractor logistic support contract awarded to EINSA for the maintenance of the RAF weapon loaders fleet. EINSA US was founded to support EINSA’s participation in the F-35 [Lightning fighter] programme.

How many people does EINSA employ?
Altogether, approximately 150 employees are working for EINSA today. Roughly half of our workforce directly manufactures our products and more than a third of the workforce consists of engineers and technicians. That is why we usually like to define ourselves as an engineering company with production capacity.

Can you tell us about the products your workforce manufacture?
EINSA has a wide range of products and our GSE is in operation in more than 60 countries with over 100 customers worldwide. Among the civil equipment which EINSA manufactures, we can highlight the following: passenger stairs, conveyor belts, container loaders, electrical power and hydraulic power supply vehicles (ground power units, or GPUs, and HGPUs), push/pull tow tractors, container/pallet cargo transporters, handling equipment for aircraft and helicopters, servicing equipment and refuellers.
In the military market, we can offer: external weapon loaders, air transportable ‘K’ loaders, multi-role tactical vehicles, GPUs and HGPUs, push/pull tow tractors, container/pallet cargo transporters, handling equipment for aircraft and helicopters, and refuellers.

Can you tell us about your customer base?
EINSA exports more than 95% of its products and international companies are our main customers. In recent years, [German airport operator] Fraport has become one of the most important customers for EINSA in the civil market – we have supplied passenger stairs and tractors to Fraport for Frankfurt Airport. Moreover, customers like [Spanish national flag-carrier] Iberia, [GSE rental specialist] TCR and [Portuguese handler] Groundforce are longstanding customers.

And in the military market?
EINSA has actively participated in some of the most advanced domestic and international defence and aeronautical programmes of our times, including the Eurofighter programme, the F-35 programme, the A400M and C-295 programmes, the MRTT [Multi Role Tanker Transport] programme and the Tiger and NH90 helicopter programmes, delivering equipment not only to some of the most important aeronautical companies such as BAE, Airbus and Leonardo, but also to many air forces around the world. These include the Canadian Air Force, the German Air Force, the Finnish Air Force and the Italian Air Force, to mention just a few.
EINSA has also been selected by Lockheed Martin to be the official supplier in Europe of the weapon loader for its F-35 programme.

Is your customer base growing, post-pandemic?
Fortunately, during the pandemic, EINSA was able to continue to provide normal production by taking the safety measures recommended by the relevant public authorities. The German Air Force and Canadian Air Force contracts for military ground support equipment and the framework contract with Fraport for passenger steps and tractors were primary responsibilities during this period.
Following the pandemic, airport activity has started again, and we have seen new demand for equipment in this summer period.
In addition, national tenders have been launched for handling licences at Spanish airports, so we expect orders from different customers to supply new equipment for those gaining these new licences.

Have you expanded or improved your products recently in any way?
EINSA equipment is continuously being improved. EINSA is a design authority and has the technical independence to update and redesign its products to comply with the latest international standards and requirements.
Plus, EINSA is increasingly offering electric versions for GSE to meet zero emission requirements of airport authorities. For example, EINSA will be showcasing its new model of electric pallet/container transporter, the TEA-15, at the GSE Expo Europe in Paris in September. Based on our TDA-15 diesel conveyor, this 100% electric equipment has been designed to transport and transfer containerised and palletised loads of up to 7 tonnes to and from container/pallet loaders, trolleys and racks.
Elsewhere, EINSA has developed his own anti-collision system in accordance with IATA AHM 913 [the International Air Transport Association’s Airport Handling Manual standard relating to collision avoidance on airport ramps]. We offer a staggered solution to allow the customer to define the level of protection to include in the equipment, from basic protection to the full protection according to AHM 913.

Do you have plans to further add to your GSE product lines?
Yes, we do. In line with our policy of continuous improvement, EINSA has expanded its wide range of products and we have developed a new container loader that is totally electric. This new model, the SELT 7000, will – like the TEA-15 – be exhibited at the GSE Expo in Paris. This electric equipment is a single platform container loader that can lift, lower and transport LD-2/3 containers of up to 7 tonnes.

Have you identified any particular changes in the market that are affecting your business and the sort of GSE you might develop?
As we mentioned above, EINSA offers an electric version for the majority of our equipment types, since we think electric-powered equipment is what our customers will require more and more. Furthermore, we are currently developing hydrogen fuel cell power options such that we will soon be able to offer a new zero emissions solution to our customers.