An excellent report entitled “Andalucia Aerospace Sector 2001-2005” has been prepared by consultant company Airtec of the PTA in Malaga which outlines the current status of the Andalucian aerospace industry.
It is noted in the report that there is a big difference in the productivity of the two prime companies which is 235 thousand Euro per employee and the Auxiliary companies where production is 55 thousand Euro per employee. This is said to be due to staff training but perhaps there is more to it. Economies of scale, small companies in start up phase and inaccurate reporting due to sub contracting.
Aertec warned that Research and Development (R&D) expenditure is only 2% of the turnover in 2005 and most company’s technological profile is linked to mechanical activity.
Most auxiliarily companies are very reliant on the so called prime companys, and their sub-contracting policy and is still largely based on “Built to Print” models. Additionally There is not an specific R+D Centre who stimulate this market
The Andalucian government is keen to develop and help this sector of Industry and a number of inactivates have been set up over the last few years.
Since October 2002 there has been a masters degree course “Máster en Tecnologías y Gestión de la Industria Aeronáutica” at the Universidad de Sevilla, the lectures take place at the Escuela de Ingenieros de Sevilla
There is a “Foro Aeronáutico de Andalucía”, an initiative of the “Escuela Superior de Ingenieros de Sevilla” and the regional Government. The talks take place on the first Tuesday of every month (in term time) in the Salon de Grados at the school and are organised by the Professor of Engineering Carlos Gomez Camacho.
There is a trade fair in the FIBES conference centre Seville each April where the Aerospace Industry takes part.
Special grants are available for companies in the Aerospace Industry in Andalucia, details were published in the BOJA (Boletin Oficial de la Junta de Andalucia) of 17 January 2002 from the Order of 21 de December 2001.
In 2004 the government put into action the Plan Director del Sector Aeronautico.
The Parque Tecnológico Aeroespacial Aeropolis has been set up near Seville
However since the Airtec report the government has stepped up a gear in its support for the industry which offers a cutting edge image for the region. It has decided on five declared lines of action.
- Creation of more added value activities evolution towards the location of new prime companies focused to avionics, systems and engines. Productivity improvement via process improvement. Promote research and development activities. Promote International Commercial development of the auxiliary companies.
- To identify new opportunities related to A400M Final Assembly Line.
And to continue with Administration Support of the Industry generally but in particular :
- Financial support.
- Appropriate infrastructures development.
- Providing qualified personnel in accordance with sector demands.
The following initiates have been reported.
For Prime Companies: Francisco Mencia has announced that the Government is supporting the creation of three more Andalucian “prime companies” in three different Subsectors. He said that by 2008 these three companies should be converted to Prime Companies. Although he would not name the companies, Francisco Vallejo in another interview mentioned Sacesa, Elimco and SK3000 as by 2008 being a “principal nucleus capable of adsorbing complete work packages”
For R&D: Creation of a special department within the Agency IDEA for aerospace sector and creation the Fundacion Helice. More specifically the future creation of Centro Aeroespacial de Tecnología Avanzada de Andalucía” (CATEC), an research organisation dedicated to three specialities: structures and materials; electronics, avionics and systems; and propulsion (motors and fuel). The first phase will have a budget of 21m euros and the second which will be developed from 2008 to 2010 will have another 27 million euros.
For International Commerce: Support Auxiliary companies at trade shows such a Aertec. It must be noted that websites on the Internet are a key part of commercial development and marketing . The quality and scope of the websites of the Andalucian aerospace companies is far inferior to their German counterparts.