Airbus has reorganized its manufacturing business to create a new subsidiary called Airbus Atlantic, which is supplying so-called “plug-and-fly” aerostructures to itself and other OEMs.
Airbus Atlantic, which was officially established on January 1 consolidates Airbus’ manufacturing sites in Nantes and Montoir-de-Bretagne in France with an existing subsidiary called Stelia Aerospace and its 10 production facilities around the world.
The move, which was initially announced in April 2021 is intended to strengthen the aerostructure assembly business within Airbus by increasing its competitiveness and thereby the level of innovation and quality of its products.
Airbus Atlantic employs 13,000 people in five countries and has an estimated business volume of around €3.5 billion (US$3.9 billion). The company supports a global supply chain of more than 2,500 companies.
The set up of Airbus Atlantic creates the second largest Tier One aerostructures supplier in the world after Spirit Aerosystems, which was formed in a similar way in 2005 by Boeing from its aerostructures manufacturing sites.
As well as the development, test and manufacturing of complex composite and metallic aerostructure components, Airbus Atlantic also supplies pilot seats, ducting and pipework. The company is working with customers in both the civil and military sectors including Bombardier, ATR, Dassault Aviation and Embraer.
The newly formed company inherits participation in several Airbus programs including the A220, A320, A330, A350, ATR 42/72, the Beluga XL and A400M as well as the Dassault Falcon 10X business jet and the ATR42 and ATR72 turboprop aircraft.
The fully equipped sections the company can produce include mechanical, hydraulic and electrical systems which have been functionally tested for things such as pressure and continuity before delivery, so OEMs can perform “plug and fly” assembly. For example, the central fuselage section it supplies to Bombardier for its GLobal 7500 business jet is equipped with electrical and hydraulic systems and the deal for the wingsets it supplies to ATR includes the supply of the final test benches for fuel and flight controls.
Cédric Gautier, CEO of Airbus Atlantic said, “Airbus Atlantic aims at meeting the great challenges linked to a sustainable aviation industry, pioneering new technologies. Our first mission will be to ensure the satisfaction of all our customers and to establish new standards of excellence in terms of quality and operational efficiency.
“I have full confidence in the talent, enthusiasm and commitment of the Airbus Atlantic teams to write this new chapter of our history with success.”
The seating the company supplies will continue to be marketed under the Stelia brand.