Bombardier has a significant presence, a strong track record and established history in the UK with both its Aviation and Transportation divisions.
In 1989, the world’s first aircraft manufacturer, Short Brothers plc (Shorts), was acquired by Bombardier from the UK Government. Since then, Bombardier investment of more than £2.7 billion.
From design through manufacture to after-market support, Bombardier Belfast specialises in major aircraft structures and flight control surfaces in metal and advanced composites. With first-class capabilities and a workforce of around 3,500, the Belfast operation plays a pivotal role in all Bombardier's families of business aircraft. In addition to Bombardier programmes, customers include Airbus, General Electric, International Aero Engines, Irkut Corporation, Pratt & Whitney, and Rolls-Royce.
Bombardier is the largest manufacturing company in Northern Ireland and produces around 10 per cent of Northern Ireland's total manufacturing exports. An extensive supply chain includes around 800 approved suppliers in the UK and Ireland, and a further 100 in Europe. A percentage of pre-tax profits is allocated to the Bombardier (NI) Foundation each year to help fund Northern Ireland-based charitable initiatives, mainly in the areas of environment, education and entrepreneurship. The foundation also supports employees who fundraise and volunteer in their local communities.
Bombardier Transportation, the rail division of Bombardier, has around 3,500 employees at eight sites and 23 service locations across the UK. The company has important sites at Crewe, Plymouth, Derby and Burton on Trent. It also operates from several locations in and around London, including its heavy maintenance depot at Ilford. Bombardier’s Derby site, which has produced a significant proportion of the UK’s latest technology rolling stock for both mainline train operations and London Underground, forms part of the world’s largest cluster of rail companies. The cluster comprises a supply base of approximately 100 companies, collectively employing around 25,000 people and contributing around £2.6bn to the local and national economies.
Bombardier Belfast is one of the key aerospace companies in the UK. In addition to its headquarters in Belfast, where administration, engineering, fuselage and wing production are based, the company has several other facilities located a short distance from the city. Customer services and composites production, including engine nacelle systems, are based at Newtownabbey and further composites production takes place in Dunmurry. Sheet-metal component production is based at Newtownards.
These sites make up the Bombardier centre of excellence for the design and manufacture of aircraft fuselages, engine nacelle systems, wings and flight control surfaces, and for processes such as advanced composites. We hold Investors in People accreditation, ISO 9001 quality assurance approval, the AS9100 international quality standard, ISO 14001 Environmental Management Systems certification, and the OHSAS 18001 accreditation for our health and safety management systems.
Bombardier leads the ADS Group’s SC21 (21st Century Supply Chains) programme in Northern Ireland, which addresses supply chain improvement and aims to increase the competitiveness of the UK aerospace and defence sector.
We have a strategic presence in the UK and are committed to supporting the joint government and industry Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP). The strategy aims to promote long-term growth, boost the number of skilled jobs, and enable the UK to foster innovative technologies to ensure it remains at the forefront of the global aerospace industry.
The range of European and UK research programmes in which Bombardier is involved are aimed at improving the environmental performance of future aircraft by reducing fuel burn and emissions through the use of advanced materials and advanced engineering technologies. Projects also focus on improving manufacturing efficiency and sustainability through the development of high value manufacturing processes required to deliver new, innovative product designs to meet and exceed customers’ needs and expectations.
The company is a partner in the Northern Ireland Advanced Composites and Engineering centre (NIACE). NIACE is an industry-led, university-hosted technology hub for the research and development of advanced engineering and advanced materials technologies, particularly in the area of advanced composite technologies, and catering for a range of industrial sectors. Participating companies are co-located with academic staff from Queen’s University, Belfast and the University of Ulster to work together to develop world-class technology solutions for a breadth of manufacturing applications.
Bombardier Belfast is in receipt of R&D grant support from Invest NI for a Missionised Aircraft Modification project. Part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 20014-2020, the project aims to develop a significant modification to an aircraft horizontal stabiliser, thereby enabling the aircraft to carry a number of externally-mounted sensors and equipment for missionised use.