New Japanese Companies On Board A380

New Japanese Companies On Board A380: Minebea, Showa Aircraft, & Komy

28 September 2004 Press Release

Minebea Co. Ltd., Showa Aircraft Co. Ltd. and Komy Co.Ltd. announced today that they are joining the group of Japanese manufacturers already on board the A380 programme.  These companies will supply equipment and materials for the next-generation super jumbo programme.  Moreover, Yokohama Rubber Corporation will expand its contribution to the A380 with the supply of new materials.

Airbus President and CEO Noel Forgeard said,  "We welcome Minebea, Showa Aircraft and Komy to the A380 programme.  Their support is important to ensure the most advanced technologies are on board our best selling A380.  The additional contribution of Yokohama Rubber is a proof of the strong confidence of our Japanese suppliers in the success of the A380."

These additions will raise the estimated revenue of Japanese suppliers in the A380 programme to well over US $4.6 billion in the years to come.   The three new participants bring to 21 the total of Japanese companies collaborating in the A380.

The contribution of each company is as follows:

Minebea Co. Ltd. is the supplier of highly engineered rod ends, spherical and roller bearings, and rod assemblies used extensively in the A380.  Minebea?s plants in Japan (Karuizawa, Nagano), Europe (Lincolnshire, UK), and United States (New Hampshire) are responsible for the design and production.  Minebea has been working with Airbus since 1982.

Showa Aircraft Co. Ltd. will supply Aramid Honeycomb materials to be used in the manufacturing of composite parts for the A380.   The core materials, to be produced at Showa?s Akishima Plant (near Tokyo), are currently under qualification at different Airbus plants.   This is the first time for Showa Aircraft to work with Airbus.

Komy Co. Ltd. is the supplier of special mirrors selected as standard equipment for the A380 overhead stowage bins.  The development and production is on going at Komy's plant in Kawaguchi (Saitama Prefecture).   The first delivery will be at the end of 2004.   Komy has been working with Airbus since 2000.

Yokohama Rubber Corp. will supply new pre preg materials to be used initially in the production of A380 belly fairing parts.  The material is currently undergoing qualification at Airbus? Getafe plant (Spain).  Production will be at Yokohama Rubber's Hiratsuka plant (Kanagawa Prefecture).    Yokohama Rubber is already supplying the A380 water and waste tanks.  Delivery of the tanks for the first serial production aircraft happened earlier this month.

To date, 13 customers have announced firm orders and commitments for a total  of 139 A380s.  The 555-seater A380 will enter into service in early 2006.

Airbus is an EADS joint Company with BAE Systems.

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