The new Airbus delivery centre in Toulouse has been officially named after Henri Ziegler, one of the founding fathers of Airbus and its first president in the days of the GIE. The ceremony took place in the presence of his son, Bernard Ziegler, former technical director of Airbus, and Gustav Humbert, President and CEO.
â€œThere would be no Airbus without Henri Ziegler,â€ stated Gustav Humbert in the opening of his speech. Indeed Henri Ziegler was the man who backed the revolutionary idea of a widebody twin engine aircraft capable of carrying 250 passengers. Thus was the A300B born and the Airbus programme launched.
Talking about the contribution of the Ziegler family to Airbus, Gustav Humbert concluded: â€œVisionaries have made Airbus. Visionaries will continue to sustain and ensure the future success of Airbus.â€
Describing his father as a convinced European, Bernard Ziegler recalled his â€œunparalleled gift for bringing together the skills and know-how of different nationalitiesâ€.
â€œAll dreams can come true provided you combine imagination in design with will power in realisation,â€ said Bernard Ziegler. â€œI wish you what he would have wished for you: imagination, courage, a lot of courage.â€
The new delivery centre will be operational in the last quarter of 2006, in time for the first A380 deliveries. In the new centre Airbus will be able to perform the entire process of aircraft delivery in one place, from aircraft inspection to signature and title transfer.
A main building of 8,000 square metres will be dedicated to reception and official ceremonies. It will be linked via footbridges to three satellite buildings, one for the A380, one for the single-aisles and the third for widebodies and long range.