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France: Airbus, Safran finalize space launchers merger

 |  June 30, 2016

Airbus Group and Safran pledged on Thursday to make Europe competitive in the face of US low-cost rival SpaceX as they completed a deal to merge their space launcher activities.

The two aerospace groups said they were closing a deal that paves the way for the next generation of European rocket, the Ariane 6, which will make its first flight in 2020 and be used to put commercial and military satellites into orbit.

The long-awaited deal calls for the integration of industrial assets, turning their existing Airbus Safran Launchers venture into an operational concern with 8,400 employees in France and Germany.

The heads of both companies pledged to focus on making the venture competitive after Europe’s position in the commercial launch market was threatened by Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies, or SpaceX, which intends to offer cut-rate launch services by re-using its rockets.


Full Content: Reuters

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