Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Aerospace firms could cash in on Boeing deal

Boeing selected a UK firm to work on the new 737 MAX aircraft
Boeing selected a UK firm to work on the new 737 MAX aircraft

Northern Ireland aerospace firms could be poised for big opportunities after planemaker Boeing selected a UK firm to work on the new 737 MAX aircraft.

The US giant has chosen GKN to produce winglets for the planes, with the work being done at Cowes on the Isle of Wight.

GKN will deliver the first developmental winglet sets to Boeing in 2015, with first deliveries of the Boeing 737 MAX due in 2017.

Just last month GKN chose Moyola Precision Engineering in Northern Ireland to manufacture components for the winglet that the firm is supplying for Bombardier's Global 7000/8000 ultra-long range business jet.

GKN came 40th in this year's Top 100 Aerospace Company poll from business advisory firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, which was topped by Boeing with Airbus parent EADS in second place.

Leslie Orr, manager of ADS, the trade body for aerospace, defence, security and space firms in Northern Ireland, said the Boeing deal bodes well for supply chain companies here.

"This is very positive news and while we don't know if any companies in Northern Ireland will directly benefit from the deal just announced, it bodes well when prime companies select UK firms for this type of work," he said.