Spirit AeroSystems is to complete a transaction to purchase Bombardier’s Belfast Facility this Friday.

The move had been thrown into doubt after the component terminated a planned $420 million acquisition of Belgian component manufacturer Asco, just a week before the deadline for completion earlier this autumn. The close date of the Asco deal had been pushed back by Spirit while the European Commission reviewed competitive concerns.

The $500m purchase of Bombardier’s commercial aviation business has been welcomed by ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt. He said: “The completion of the sale of Bombardier’s Belfast facility to Spirit AeroSystems this Friday is great news for their highly skilled workforce, the aerospace supply chain in Northern Ireland and the entire UK aerospace industry. The Belfast facility is a centre of excellence for aerospace and is home for the award winning resin-infused advanced composite A220 wing.

Purchase will “open up opportunities across the world”

“Being one of the largest aerostructures businesses in the world, Spirit AeroSystems will be a great partner for the facility and will help open up new opportunities across the world. At a time of unparalleled difficulty for our sector, it is great to see the commitment from Spirit AeroSystems to invest in world-leading aerospace expertise and expand their UK footprint for the future.”

The Bombardier deal is intended to diversify Spirit AeroSystems’ portfolio within aerospace and defence away from reliance on the beleaguered Boeing 737 MAX. The sale followed a decision by Bombardier to streamline the business into production of business jets. The deal included acquisition of a wing-manufacturing site in Ireland, manufacturing in Morocco and a maintenance and overhaul site in Dallas.

Spirit lost $356 million in the second quarter of 2020, down from a $168 million profit in the same period of 2019.In mid-August, Spirit CEO Tom Gentile said the company had funds to complete both acquisitions. The company has cut 8,000 jobs – 44% of its workforce.

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