In an effort to ramp up production on the 787 aircraft, The Boeing Co. has agreed to buy a 50% stake in Vought Aircraft Industries' interest in South Carolina supplier Global Aeronautica LLC. When the deal is completed, Global Aeronautica will become a 50-50 joint venture between The Boeing Co. and Alenia North America, a subsidiary of Italy's Alenia Aeronautica.
Boeing will work with Alenia to implement lean strategies to improve efficiency and productivity of Global Aeronautica's operations where it manufacturers the aft fuselage for the 787, said Pat Shanahan, vice president and general manager of the 787 program.
"All three partners in this transaction -- Boeing, Vought and Alenia -- believe these changes will enable the 787 team to continue to overcome supply chain challenges of the program," Shanahan said.
The 787 faces its third potential delivery delay because of supply chain issues. The original delivery date was scheduled for May 2008, but according to published reports that could be pushed back until the third quarter of 2009.