Ministers welcome aerospace Memorandum of Understanding signing at Farnborough Airshow

First Minister Rt. Hon. Peter D. Robinson MLA and Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster MLA today welcomed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Spirit AeroSystems (Europe) Ltd. and Sigma Aeronautics at Farnborough International Airshow.

Spirit AeroSystems, headquartered in Wichita, Kansas in the USA, is one of the world’s largest non-OEM designers and manufacturers of aerostructures for commercial aircraft. This MOU is part of Spirit’s strategy to further develop its supply chain capabilities within the United Kingdom.

Sigma Aeronautics leads a collaborative network of aerospace companies located in Northern Ireland, which brings together the capabilities and talents of leading Northern Ireland companies including, Moyola Precision Engineering, Denroy Plastics, BASE, JW Kane Precision Engineering, Dontaur Group and Maydown Precision Engineering.

Witnessing the MOU signing, the First Minister said: “This is a major opportunity for Northern Ireland firms to work with a world leading company to secure additional business in the rapidly expanding aerospace market.

“Aerospace is a substantial employer in Northern Ireland and this is the type of technology-led and innovation-driven venture which will help to accelerate growth in exports and create high value job opportunities.”

Arlene Foster said: “Invest Northern Ireland has been working closely with our aerospace companies to support growth and ensure that the sector remains internationally competitive. This MOU demonstrates our local firms’ collaborative spirit and drive to become an established element of the worldwide aerospace supply chain.”

Neil McManus, Vice President and Managing Director of Spirit Europe commented: “Today’s signing with Sigma further solidifies our joint commitment to build and support the aircraft manufacturing supply chain in the UK.”

David Raymond, MD of Sigma Aeronautics, added: “Spirit’s offer to work with Northern Ireland aerospace companies to help them become an integral part of its UK supply chain presents a tremendous opportunity for companies here. Together we supply directly and indirectly to most of the major aircraft manufacturers worldwide. Our mission is to understand and share Spirit’s strategy for growth and ensure we become a long term partner in their success.

“We will build new business together based on successful collaboration, innovation, technical excellence, and the will to win. I would like to acknowledge all who have worked to make this first step today possible – Neil McManus and his team, the Northern Ireland companies involved, Invest Northern Ireland, and importantly ADS who have been with us all along providing invaluable support.”