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Iconic company grows and grows

Published 13/06/2012

Like Harland and Wolff, Shorts Brothers - now more commonly known by the name of parent company Bombardier Aerospace - is one of Northern Ireland's few iconic businesses.

More than 75 years after it began to put roots down in Belfast, it is still making headlines for massive business deals, most recently the billion-pound contract with NetJets, which sells shares in business jets to the rich and famous around the world.

It presently employs 5,000 people in Belfast, where its Queens Island site has become a centre of excellence in the design and manufacture of fuselages, engine nacelles and composites.

It has also signed up to acquire the former Nortel factory at Doagh Road, Newtownabbey, an expression of confidence in an ability to attract new work.

Given the NetJets deal, it would appear that confidence has been well-founded.

e 1908 - Short Brothers company registers in Battersea, London

e 1936 - Work begins on a new factory at Queen's Island, Belfast

e 1938 - Production gets under way in Belfast

e 1941 - Short Brothers is badly damaged during an air raid on Belfast

e 1943 - Short Brothers is taken over by the Government

e 1988 - Fokker 100 enters airline service

e 1989 - Short Brothers is acquired by Bombardier

e 1992 - Belfast gets major role in Learjet 45

e 1992 - CRJ200 enters service

e 1997 - Belfast gets major roles in CRJ700 and Q400 regional aircraft

e 2003 - Maiden flight of Global 5000

e 2003 - Challenger 300 establishes two world records

e 2006 - Bombardier opens new repair station in Belfast

e 2007 - Bombardier launches CRJ1000 commercial aircraft

e 2008 - Bombardier launches CSeries commercial aircraft family

e 2009 - Construction begins on Belfast Wing Production facility

e 2010 - Bombardier grows its flagship global family with two new jets

e 2010 - Belfast completes first phase of the new Wing Manufacturing and Assembly Facility

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