AIRBUS SAS (an EADS joint company with BAE Systems)

Airbus Industrie set up 18 December 1970 as Groupement d'lnteret Economique (GIE: a company which makes no profits or losses in its own right) and has been profitable since 1990, producing an operating surplus that is shared among its partners. Its first task was to manage development, manufacture, marketing and support of A300; this management now extends to A300-600, A310, A318, A319/ACJ, A320, A321, A330, A340 and A380. Large Airliner Division created in March 1996 to oversee A3XX (later A380) project. Airbus delivered its 3,000th aircraft, an A320 for JetBlue Airways, on 18 July 2002. It is currently studying A30X concepts for a short-range, 200-passenger and long-range 250-passenger airliner as potential replacements for the A300 and A310 from about 2010, once development of the A380 is completed.
A new single-aisle internal flight deck door, complying with pre-existing and new FAA anti-intrusion regulations, received JAA design approval on 21 May 2002 and is in production; it was certified for the A330/340 family on 26 June 2002, and subsequently for all Airbus aircraft. In early 2003, Airbus selected Thales as its preferred supplier of HUDs for its entire range of FBW airliners.
Plans for establishment of a single corporate entity (SCE) overtaken and modified by formation of European Aeronautic, Defense and Space Company (EADS). Planned restructuring of the consortium into Airbus Integrated Company (AIC) was revealed in March 2000 and approved by the EC in late 2000; official starting date was 1 January 2001, although completion of formalities was delayed. EADS holds 80 per cent and BAE Systems 20 per cent of AIC, which incorporated in France on 11 july 2001 as an SAS (Societe par Actions Simplifiees) following a formal decision on 23 June 2000.
Airbus responsible for all work by partner companies and has some 45,000 employees, including workers at its spare parts centre in Hamburg and its US, Chinese and Japanese subsidiaries. Approximate European breakdown is Germany 16,000, France 14,000, UK 8,300 and Spain 2,400. Stork (formerly Fokker) is an associate in A300 and A310 and Belairbus (Belgian consortium) in A310, A320, A330 and A340. Alenia manufactures front fuselage plug for A321. An engineering centre has been established in Moscow in a joint venture (registered in December 2002) with the Kaskol group, which has shares in Sokol, Hydromash, Rostvertol and other Russian aerospace companies; this was opened, with a workforce of 25, in late March 2003, and will develop and coproduce components for the A380 and other Airbus types.
Subsidiaries include Airbus North America, Airbus Finance Company (AFC) formed in 1994, Airbus Training Centre (Miami) and Airbus China. Airbus's training centre in Toulouse, previously a subsidiary known as Aeroformation, and the main spares centre, Airbus Materiel Support, formerly Airspares Hamburg, have been integrated within the consortium's Customer Services Directorate; a new, purpose-built mockup centre was added to the Toulouse facilities during 1999 and was fully operational by end 2000. A training centre was opened in Miami, Florida, in October 1999.
In July 1996, Airbus Training and Support Centre in Beijing was opened, becoming operational in October 1997.

Airframe prime contractors:

  • Airbus Deutschland (EADS)
  • Airbus Espana (EADS CASA)
  • Airbus France (EADS)
  • Airbus UK (BAE Systems)


  • Airbus North America, Washington, DC, USA
  • Airbus China, Beijing
  • Airbus Japan, Tokyo

Contact Details

Address: 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, F-31707 Blagnac Cedex, France.

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