Mubadala Aerospace, a division of Mubadala Development, announced Tuesday it has entered a $1 billion (AED3.67bn) contract for supplying critical components for 777 and 787 Dreamliner airplanes.
The partnership makes Mubadala the Arab world’s first direct supplier of composites to Boeing.
“Boeing and Mubadala Aerospace announce a 10-year direct contract for Strata Manufacturing, Mubadala Aerospace’s advanced composite aerostructures facility in Al Ain, to produce commercial composite aerostructures for the 777 and 787 Dreamliner,” the companies said in a statement signed by Homaid Al Shemmari, Mubadala Aerospace’s executive director, and Jim Albaugh, the president and chief executive of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The production of components will be from Mubadala Aerospace’s Strata Manufacturing plant in Al Ain. The company said it also expects to be the future supplier of another major component, the vertical fin for the Dreamliner.
“In addition, the companies announce a strategic agreement that positions Strata to be a future supplier of the vertical fin for the Dreamliner, a major composite assembly for Boeing’s most advanced airplane programme,” the statement said.
“This is an important milestone for Strata,” said Mubadala Aerospace’s Al Shemmari. “The signing of this agreement, here at the Global Aerospace Summit in Abu Dhabi, is testament to how far Strata has come as a company in the short 18 months it has been operational. Mubadala Aerospace is developing a world-class – and crucially – sustainable aerospace industry in the UAE, and Strata is at the heart of this development.”
Boeing has already started to provide tooling, operational early training and other support for the initial work packages. Based on Strata’s competitiveness and performance, it could become a future supplier of the 787 vertical fin assembly.
Company’s official expressed optimism regarding the development, as Strata already supplies wing parts for Airbus’s A330-340 airliners from its Al Ain factory.
The deal with Boeing is “comparative to the existing deal with Airbus, which is in the range of $1bn”, said Mubadala’s Mr Al Shemmari.
The agreement is inline with the initial one announced during the 2011 Dubai Airshow to establish Strata as a composite aerostructures supplier and develop a strategic road map for Strata to become a major Tier 1 supplier to Boeing, similar to other parts suppliers such as Rolls-Royce.
“This announcement is yet further evidence of how Mubadala Aerospace and Boeing’s close strategic agreement is developing all the time,” he said. “The UAE is one of Boeing’s most important commercial and defence customers, and Boeing has been committed for several years to build a partnership with Mubadala Aerospace that brings long-term, mutual benefits to both companies.”
Mubadala Aerospace already has strategic partnerships with leading organisations such as EADS/Airbus, General Electric, Lockheed Martin, Sikorsky Aerospace Services and Finmeccanica-Alenia Aeronautica.
Mubadala Aerospaces’ portfolio of aerospace businesses already includes Abu Dhabi Aircraft Technologies, the Advanced Military Maintenance Repair and Overhaul Centre, SR Technics, Sanad Aero Solutions, Strata Manufacturing, Horizon Flight Academy, and Piaggio Aero.