Industry

Published on November 5th, 2019 | by Mark Dwyer

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Bombardier Sells Belfast Plant to Spirit AeroSystems

Bombardier announced last week an agreement to sell its aerostructures business to Spirit AeroSystems Holding, Inc. supporting Bombardier’s strategic decision to focus on its two strong growth pillars, trains and business aircraft. The sale includes the Belfast plant, formerly Short Brothers, which employs around 3,600 workers.

The transaction also includes a plant in Casablanca, Morocco and its aerostructures maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in Dallas, U.S. for a cash consideration of €451 million and the assumption of liabilities with a total carrying value in excess of €632  million, including government refundable advances and pension obligations. Following the transaction, Spirit will continue to supply structural aircraft components and spare parts to support the production and in-service fleet of Bombardier Aviation’s Learjet, Challenger and Global families of aircraft.

The transaction follows the formation of Bombardier Aviation earlier this year and streamlines Bombardier’s aerostructures footprint to focus on core capabilities in Montreal, Mexico and its Global 7500 wing operations in Texas. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2020 and remains subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

“This transaction represents another strategic milestone in the reshaping of our portfolio to focus on our strong business aircraft and rail franchises,” said Alain Bellemare, President and Chief Executive Officer, Bombardier Inc.  “We are confident that Spirit’s acquisition of these aerostructures assets is the best outcome for customers, employees and shareholders, and we are committed to ensuring a smooth and orderly transition.”

Bombardier came close to bankruptcy in 2015 following delays and overruns in the CSeries programme. As part of the streamlining of the business, that project was sold to Airbus and has been rebranded the Airbus A220. Bombardier employs over 68,000 worldwide and is headquartered in Montreal.

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About the Author

Mark Dwyer

Mark is an airline pilot by profession flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He also instructs on them including tailwheel differences training and is a UK CAA Examiner. He also flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.



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