The Peterborough-based Loomex Group’s partnership with a joint venture vying for a long-term federal aircrew training contract stands to have positive economic impacts for the region — potentially adding up to 20 jobs locally — the company’s president and CEO Trent Gervais says.
Babcock Leonardo Canadian Aircrew Training, a collaborative venture between Babcock Canada and Leonardo, a pair of aerospace and defence companies that teamed up last year to pursue Canada’s Future Aircrew Training (FAcT) program contract, recently announced that Loomex has been brought on board as a strategic partner with the collective’s bid team.
FAcT is a 25-year-long contract expected to be awarded in 2023. The Canadian government is looking to procure an aircrew training program that provides aircraft, ground-based training systems, civilian instructors, along with additional essential services including airfield maintenance and food services, for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
Loomex has been tapped to help lead the development of a modern Canadian military aircrew training infrastructure, focused on supporting students and instructors alike.
Founded in 2009, The Loomex Group provides services in aviation and aerospace, infrastructure and asset management, emergency management, and education to clients in Canada and the United States, including municipalities, airports and First Nations.
The company manages the Peterborough Airport and runs the City of Kawartha Lakes Airport in Lindsay. It manages a total of eight airports across Ontario and Alberta.
Loomex is one of several strategic partners — each bringing their own specialties and expertise — on the bid team. Babcock Leonardo Canadian Aircrew Training and its partners are competing against another joint venture — CAE and KF Aerospace — to win the contract.
Gervais said he’s thrilled to be part of the initiative, adding that Loomex was selected by Babcock Leonardo Canadian Aircrew Training because of its proven track record in delivering “second to none” services.
Loomex will act as an important puzzle piece in the overall initiative, he said, delivering services related to aircraft rescue and firefighting, search and rescue and emergency management.
As part of the ongoing bid process and future infrastructure development, Gervais said Loomex is currently hard at work projecting labour and material costs for decades to come, fleshing out the future delivery of services and crafting an overall “vision.”
“We’re working on the vision of: how can we work together? How can we work efficiently?” Gervais said.
“How can we ensure we can have as much Indigenous content as can? How can we look at the environment and design a green program that’s efficient and effective? It’s a big investment for us but the eye on the prize is landing a contract worth millions that we’ll be managing out of headquarters in Peterborough.”
A successful bid will spell economic benefits locally, he added.
“Because we would manage this contract from Peterborough, we’re going to be adding trainers, finance (employees). We’ll be adding a management team, health and safety employees and educators. It also means for us likely the expansion of another facility here at the airport,” Gervais said.
“We could add another 15 to 20 jobs here locally — and between 80 to 100 jobs in Winnipeg, Southport and Moose Jaw,” he continued.
Even if the bid proves unsuccessful, Gervais said Loomex’s selection as a partner in and of itself speaks to the company’s proficiency and progress.
The contract won’t kick in until five years after it’s awarded, but Gervais plans to launch the hiring process immediately if the bid is successful.
Brendan Burke is a staff reporter at the Examiner. His reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative. Reach him at email@example.com.
Brendan Burke, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Peterborough Examiner