Bombardier and COMAC have signed a "definitive agreement" covering areas including cockpit commonality as they seek to bolster their efforts to take on Airbus and Boeing.
The two manufacturers have agreed to cooperate on four distinctive projects to be executed as part of the first phase of COMAC and Bombardier’s long-term collaboration on the C919 aircraft and the CSeries families of commercial airliners.
The four areas are1) the cockpit human-machine (crew) interfaces, 2) the electrical system, 3) the development of aluminum-lithium standards and specifications, and 4) areas of customer services in terms of technical publications and co-location of teams. All four projects are expected to be completed over the next 12 months and in conjunction with the C919 aircraft development schedule.
In a statement, Bombardier said, "Both parties will continue exploring other possibilities for cooperation with regards to aircraft program commonalities, joint procurement, synergies in development and customer services, as well as collaboration on Bombardier and COMAC programs."
“I am delighted that, leveraging on our corporations’ mutual strengths, synergies are being developed into mutually beneficial, tangible initiatives. This will certainly contribute to enhancing the competitiveness of not only the C919 and CSeries aircraft programs, but also of COMAC and Bombardier’s overall businesses,” said Jin Zhuanglong, chairman of COMAC.
“I am pleased to see the framework agreement signed in March last year reaching this important milestone,” said Beaudoin, president and chief executive officer, Bombardier Inc. “We are confident these four initial projects will build on the complementary nature of our respective products and expertise while helping to maximize both parties’ cost savings and market shares.”
The deal to increase cockpit commonality will help reduce training costs for airlines. The Canadian manufacturer also agreed a deal earlier this year with China's aviation Industry Corp (AVIC) for aircraft financing.
Meanwhile, Albert K. Li will take the helm as general manager and head of Bombardier Aerospace China from April. He joins Bombardier from the automotive industry.
“We are proud to bring Albert on board to guide our prosperous future in the Chinese market,” said Guy C. Hachey, president and chief operating officer, Bombardier Aerospace. “The Chinese aerospace industry is experiencing tremendous growth, and Bombardier is committed to continuing the development of long-term, strategic relationships in China,” added Mr. Hachey. “I have complete confidence in Albert’s ability to help us reach this goal.”
Li will succeed Benjamin Boehm, who has been appointed to the role of Vice President, Business Development and Strategy, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft.
On the business jet side, Bombardier has appointed Alfred Wang and Yu Yubin as sales directors, Greater China. Chiko Kundi has been appointed sales director, pre-owned Aircraft for Africa, Asia and Australia.