Embraer to sell two Portuguese plants to Aernnova

by Marc Selinger

Embraer plans to sell two aircraft parts factories in Evora, Portugal. (Embraer)

Brazilian aerospace and defence company Embraer has agreed to sell two airframe factories in Evora, Portugal, to Spain-based aerostructures manufacturer Aernnova for USD172 million, saying the divestiture will allow the facilities to diversify their customer base, attract more business, and boost their utilisation levels.

“This agreement is an important step towards [Embraer's] footprint optimisation strategic initiative, which aims to [make] better use of our assets and improve the company's profitability,” Embraer president and CEO Francisco Gomes Neto said on 12 January.

The plants, which have a total area of 68,900 sq ft (6,401 m2) and about 500 employees, are exclusively dedicated to Embraer programmes. They produce parts for wings and horizontal and vertical stabilisers for several types of Embraer aircraft, including business and commercial jets and the KC-390 Millennium military transport plane.

Under Aernnova's ownership, the Evora factories will continue making parts for Embraer aircraft while gaining the freedom to pursue work from other aircraft manufacturers. The deal is expected to close in the current quarter and add about USD170 million to Aernnova's annual revenue, according to Embraer.


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Thyssenkrupp buys Wismar shipyard in Germany

by Marc Selinger

Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) has acquired MV Werften's shipyard in Wismar, Germany. (TKMS)

The Marine Systems business of German industrial conglomerate Thyssenkrupp (TKMS) has acquired the Wismar shipyard in northern Germany to help it handle an expected order for more submarines from the German government.

TKMS purchased Wismar from insolvent cruise ship builder MV Werften for an undisclosed sum. Converting the shipyard to build submarines will require re-training the workforce and buying special machines, TKMS spokesman Eugen Witte said in a 23 June e-mail. “The employees in Wismar are all highly qualified, but they have no experience in building submarines,” he explained.

Wismar will supplement TKMS's existing submarine production in Kiel. The exact timing of the government's additional submarine order is unclear.

“With the current capacities exclusively in Kiel, production for submarines ordered now would not be able to begin until 2036,” Witte said. “This means that these boats would then be ready in the 2040s. If orders are placed quickly now, investments can be made immediately in Wismar, parallel production would be possible, and the additionally ordered submarines could be ready in 2037.”


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Safran wins contract for French robotics programme ‘Furious'

by Olivia Savage

Safran Electronics & Defense ‘eRider' (pictured) is playing an important role in the French robotics programme ‘Furious'. (Safran)

Safran Electronics & Defense has been awarded a new ‘optional tranche' contract by the French defence procurement agency (Delegation Générale de l'Armement – DGA) for the robotics programme ‘Furious', Safran announced on 20 June.

‘Furious' – part of the Scorpion modernisation programme – seeks to develop innovative robotic systems for mounted and dismounted warfighters. In 2018 the DGA awarded Safran and partner Effidence a contract to study and “lay the groundwork for the integration of land robots”, a separate Safran announcement said.

Three vehicles or demonstrators will be tested during this five-year period. The eRider unmanned ground vehicle (UGV), developed by Safran, is the largest of the three robots in the study.

This latest announcement follows successful trials of the robotic vehicles at Sissone military base – the French Army's urban combat training centre – in late 2021, Safran said.


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Australian army receives last two Chinooks

by Akhil Kadidal

A CH-47F Chinook destined for the Australian Army is unloaded from a USAF C-5M Super Galaxy aircraft at RAAF Base Townsville on 23 June 2022. (Australia Department of Defence/Corporal Lisa Sherman)

The Australian Army has taken delivery of the last two of four new CH-47F Chinook transport helicopters ordered by the government in 2021. This takes the army's Chinook fleet to 14.

In a press statement, Boeing Australia said that the two helicopters arrived at Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Townsville on 23 June. The company added that the helicopters were delivered by a US Air Force (USAF) C-5 Galaxy aircraft.

The aircraft will join the Australian Army Aviation Command's fleet of 12 Chinooks, which are operated by C Squadron, 5th Aviation Regiment.

The commanding officer of the 5th Aviation Regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Christopher McDougall, said that the “additional helicopters will provide defence with additional lift capacity and strengthen the army's ability to support operations globally”.

The previous two aircraft arrived in Australia a year earlier on 23 June 2021, according to Boeing. The acquisition of the four helicopters is valued at AUD595 million (USD410.2 million).


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Brazilian aerospace and defence company Embraer has agreed to sell two airframe factories in Evora, ...

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