Since being launched by Honeywell International Inc. in late 2018, aerospace marketplace GoDirect Trade has proven to be a valuable conduit between buyers and sellers of new and refurbished parts.

For many buyers, refurbished parts are critical to their operations as they provide the components they need, at a price less than the cost of a new part. Yet, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the market for refurbished parts from retired aircrafts was facing shortages, which inflated prices.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit in March 2020, suddenly more than 60% of airline fleets globally ceased operations. With planes idled indefinitely, airlines begam retiring older aircrafts at a rapid pace. More than 2,500 planes were retired in 2020, compared with the more typical 1,100 a year, according to management consulting firm Oliver Wyman.

Handling a surge in queries from buyers

Suddenly, GoDirect Trade saw an influx of queries from buyers. It is common practice in the aerospace industry to strip useable parts from retired aircraft, refurbish and resell them to keep younger versions of the same model operational. One reason demand for refurbished parts exploded during the pandemic was that many manufacturers scaled back production to safeguard their workforce.

“The number of visitors to the site and queries went up, along with revenues,” says John Peterson, vice president and general manager, Software and Connectivity for GoDirect Trade. “That was encouraging, but the changes in the market also forced us to raise our game to the next level.”

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