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Eurocopter sets up new development centers as part of its ambitious innovation program

Eurocopter, the world leader in the civil and parapublic helicopter market, is providing its development personnel with the most modern high-performance infrastructures and resources, all in support of its innovation program, a core feature of the Group's Vision 2020. Following on from the launch of the Systemhaus project at Donauwörth in Germany, which will reach completion at the end of 2012, Eurocopter today officially unveiled its project for the modernization and expansion of development activities at Marignane in France. These investments will allow Eurocopter to cement its status as a technology leader.

"Our innovation policy has always been very ambitious and will remain so in the coming years," said Eurocopter President and CEO Lutz Bertling. "It allows us to stay well ahead of our competitors when it comes to technological advances and it is a significant help in maintaining our position as a world leader in the civil and parapublic markets. We are continuing to invest in innovation and infrastructures by equipping our development teams with the most modern and suitable resources, enabling them to rise to the challenges of creating the helicopters of the future."

A ceremony was held at Donauwörth last Friday to celebrate the completion of the roof of the new development center for around 900 engineers, with a total floor area of 30,000 square meters. Due for delivery at the end of this year, this new building forms part of the Systemhaus project and aims to bring together, all under one roof, the resources, skills and means required to develop, produce and certify helicopters and to assure their maintenance. As a result, the workforce currently based at Ottobrunn will be moving to join their Donauwörth colleagues in the spring of 2013.

In parallel to the ceremony in Donauwörth, the entire project for the construction of a development center at Marignane was approved on July 13. The project began with the refurbishment of the Labogir building (vehicle and mechanical test benches), which was inaugurated today, and the construction of the Helicopter Zero building (test benches integrating various helicopter systems), to be delivered in April 2013. The flagship of Marignane's future development center will be a new building: planned for delivery in early 2015, it will accommodate up to 1,000 people and house, in particular, the "plateau" for the new programs under development. Groundbreaking is scheduled for July 2013. Finally, the existing Design Office building will be renovated and new facilities housing avionics test benches will be built.

Press release issued by Airbus Helicopters on July 16, 2012


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