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EADS Eurocopter Group

In 1992, Aérospatiale joined with the German helicopter firm MBB to create Eurocopter Holdings. Both companies were already participating in the four-nation NH.90 helicopter project, along with the Italian firm Agusta and the German firm Fokker. The NH.90 was developed as a multi-purpose helicopter capable of serving as a troop transport, and in anti-submarine and anti-shipping roles.

The end of the Cold War and the diminished demand for military helicopters are the primary reasons that many European firms are forming consortia to build their new helicopters, and this trend shows no signs of changing. The Eurocopter group is now a 100-percent-owned subsidiary of EADS (European Aeronautic, Defense and Space Company). The decision of the Ministry of Defense to purchase Tiger Helicopter has firmly established Eurocopter España as the third pillar of the company in Europe.

Rotorcraft are produced in most industrialized countries, either of indigenous design or in collaboration with, or under license from, other manufacturers. US manufacturers of civilian helicopters include Bell, Enstrom, Kaman, MD Helicopters, Robinson, Schweizer, and Sikorsky. However, Bell moved its civilian helicopter production to Canada, with the last U.S. product completed in 1993. European producers include AgustaWestland, Eurocopter, NH Industries, and PZL Swidnik.

Eurocopter has made significant market inroads in recent years, particularly in North America. Meanwhile, Enstrom, Eurocopter, MD Helicopters, Schweizer, and Sikorsky all have formed or aresetting up joint ventures with China‘s industry in a trend that will only grow in the years ahead.

By a process of successive integrations, Eurocopter has become Europe's leading fully-integrated aeronautical group and is, at present, composed of three entities: the parent company, Eurocopter, the German subsidiary, Eurocopter Deutschland; and the Spanich subsidiary, Eurocopter España. This ultimate configuration has enabled the group to have unified command structures, while at the same time respecting the national identities of the partner nations.

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Page last modified: 29-09-2012 18:37:36 ZULU