Airbus Industry GIE was established in 1970 as a European collaborative venture for the development and production for large civil aircraft and from its inception had to find a way to compete against the US industry to gain a part of the market.
It was established as a French-German consortium later joined by Spanish and UK firms.
The four Airbus partner companies had operations in France, Germany, Spain and the UK, with each partner company having work-share responsibilities that reflected their particular areas of expertise.
The first Airbus transport, a wide-body twin engine jet called the A300, entered service in 1974. A complete family of Airbus models followed, competing head to head with McDonnell Douglas and Boeing.
Within ten years of its inception, Airbus captured a strong foothold in the market for large passenger jets, having 256 orders from 32 countries.
This encouraged the consortium partners to turn their loose alliance into a more structured federation and to conceive a long term vision to develop a complete family of large aircraft, ranging from 100-seat to 400-seat passenger jets.
In 2000, in response to the new bigger Boeing, Airbus became bigger as well. Three Airbus partners – Aerospatiale Matra of France, Daimler Chrysler Aerospace of Germany and Construcciones Aerospatiale of Spain – merged to form a single integrated firm, European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (EADS).
In 2010, Airbus achieved a 50.7% share of the global market.
Airbus Company in history
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