Bombardier again in search of military contracts
Twenty years after the sale of its military activities, Bombardier is re-interesting in the defense sector, seeing in it potential revenues of one billion US dollars per year.
“Today is only a fraction [de nos revenus]we sell 3, 4, 5 or 6 planes [militaires] per year, but we see it growing significantly to, I don’t know, maybe US$1 billion. And let’s dream, it could be even bigger,” said Bombardier CEO Éric Martel yesterday at a conference in Montreal.
The leader explained that with the miniaturization of electronic equipment, it is increasingly easy to transform business jets into surveillance, airborne command or telecommunications devices.
“People realize that they no longer need the big Boeing to put this […] and in addition, our planes can fly longer,” explained Mr. Martel.
New Defense Division
In April, Bombardier announced the establishment of a “Defence” division in Wichita, Kansas. This is where the company converts Challenger and Global business jets into military aircraft.
« It’s an important piece in our puzzle, » insisted Éric Martel.
« It has become an opportunity that we must seize, » he added. […] It’s very promising. We have a lot of discussions and it is certain that the current geopolitical tensions have accelerated things. People are interested in working with us. »
Mr. Martel noted that since February, the US military has been using a Challenger aircraft in the war in Ukraine. The device, modified by the American firm Leidos, monitors the western border of the country.
For its part, the Bombardier Global serves as a platform for two other military devices: the US Air Force’s Battlefield Airborne Communications Node and the GlobalEye, developed by the Swedish firm Saab.