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Global Commercial Aerospace Digital Solutions Growth Opportunities

Global Commercial Aerospace Digital Solutions Growth Opportunities

  • September 2021
  • 108 pages
  • ID: 6176207
  • Format: PDF
  • Frost & Sullivan


Table of Contents

Digitalization is a ubiquitous strategy essential to sustain business and growth in a post-pandemic economy.High penetration and improvement of digital solutions and accompanying hardware have made digitalization affordable and customizable.

The commercial aerospace digital solutions market is captured by identifying digital R&D investment and the annual digital expenditure for each stakeholder.Digital investment is broadly considered a part of Information Technology (IT) investment, except for a few major industry stakeholders that have dedicated digital investment and teams for implementing and monitoring progress.

Digitalization covers the investments and efforts by a firm to move toward digital processes, reduce cost overheads, and identify new revenue streams.Investments in mobile solutions, cloud computing, the Internet of Things, and Artificial Intelligence are some of the major focus areas for digitalization.

The study is segmented into 4 key commercial aviation segments: airlines; airports; maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO); and original equipment manufacturer (OEM). Growth factors were identified for each airline type. The parameters for full-service carriers were economic strength (in terms of GDP percentage growth) and levels of passenger traffic and tourism; for low-cost carriers, levels of domestic passenger traffic and smartphone/internet penetration; and for cargo carriers, the level of international freight movement. As the COVID-19 pandemic severely affected airports’ spending capacity in 2020, digital investments will be allocated to high-priority projects alone; this will have an impact on the overall airport IT budget requirements amidst the drastic drop in overall passenger traffic. Therefore, airports will adopt a cautious approach over the short term (2021–2023) until passenger traffic reaches the 2019 pre-pandemic level (probably during 2024–2025). The budget for digital investments largely depends on the overall passenger traffic at airports and the financial digital investment capability of airports. Airports with high passenger traffic (e.g., airports in APAC) and high spending capacity (e.g., Tier I airports) will be able to negate the lower revenue achieved during the 2020–2023 time period. MRO participants, with their B2B business model, are largely behind in terms of digitalization (only 6%), when compared to the other aviation stakeholders. Social distancing norms and the subsequent limited number of onsite technicians restrained growth for the overall market, but these factors contributed to an increase in digitalization projects in MROs. The OEM segment not only offers digital solutions to other segments but also actively invests in acquiring and developing full-stack digital capabilities (e.g., Boeing’s AnalytX platform). Most of the digital initiatives were managed by in-house teams, with only specific projects being outsourced. OEMs are leveraging digital solutions to improve their throughput, quality, and workforce efficiency—the top driving factors for the forecast period. Supply chain vulnerabilities stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, challenges in data sharing, and cross-border integration requirements are top challenges that were considered while forecasting the OEM segment.For the short term (2021–2023), the market will grow at high rates as aviation recovers (to pre-pandemic levels) by meeting pent-up demand, the growing requirement to maintain parked aircraft, and top OEMs managing their growing backlogs and orders; these factors will increase digital investment in efficient operations in both the airline and airport segments. Digital investment in the airline segment will be assigned toward revamped revenue and demand management solutions; in the airport segment, toward self-service technology and passenger flow management; and in the MRO segment, toward mobile solutions.

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