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FEBRUARY 2014 ISSUE


By bringing together all the defence capabilities of the Group under one roof, we will be able to offer integrated solutions to our customers in India in a more cost and time effective manner
President India, Airbus Group, Yves Guillaume
 
Yves Guillaume EADS recently announced the restructuring of the Group which indicated defence, space and military airlift activities will come under one division - ‘Airbus Defence and Space’. What prompted you to make such decision?
Effective 1 January 2014, EADS has been rebranded to Airbus Group. In addition, as you pointed out, Cassidian, Astrium and Airbus Military have been merged into one consolidated division called Airbus Defence and Space with around € 14 billion in sales. Cassidian was the defence and security division of former EADS whereas Astrium represented the space division. Airbus Military was best known for platforms like the A330MRTT, A400M and C-295.

The Group’s defence business was fragmented and scattered over all four divisions, which was not a good set up in terms of efficiency, cost and competitiveness. Secondly, budgets of our traditional defence and institutional customers, especially those of our ‘home nations’ are shrinking or flat and this is expected to be the case at least for the remainder of this decade. Exports to growth markets are no easy and quick way out unless the Group has, beyond superior products, also a competitive cost structure and an excellent global sales network. Hence, the conclusion to go for an internal consolidation as a prerequisite for enhanced competitiveness, profitability and future growth.

Does it mean the commercial aviation business will be your main focus and not the military?
No. The focus and core identity of the Airbus Group will remain aeronautics (both civil & military) and space, adding up to more than 95% of its activities. Our motto is: We make it fly. Airbus will continue to remain a leader in commercial aerospace and strengthen its position through innovation, services and a more global approach. At the same time with Airbus Defence and Space, the Group will preserve a strong, profitable defence and space business. Our top priority is profitability, value creation and becoming more competitive on export markets. The Group is strongly committed to meet these objectives.

So there are very little changes for the Airbus (commercial) part, right?
Yes. The change in structure is not impacting Airbus. It is the growth engine of the company and our international flagship.

What effect do you think this restructuring and re-branding will have for your Indian business, especially in defence sector?
We strongly believe that it would further strengthen our position here. With the rebranding to Airbus we bring together the entire Group under the most valuable brand we have globally. In India, Airbus enjoys excellent brand recognition. This will allow us to approach and connect with our customers here more effectively.

Also, by bringing together all the defence capabilities of the Group under one roof, we will be able to offer integrated solutions to our customers in India in a more cost and time effective manner. Our sales efforts will be better streamlined and it will also help us expand our industrial footprint in India.

 
 
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