HELIBRAS – Discurso Lutz Bertling CEO EUROCOPTER

Speech Mr Lutz Bertling
Inauguration of the Itajuba assembly line
October 2, 2012

Thank you Eduardo (Marson)

Your excellencies Governor of Minas Gerais, Minister of Defense, Minister of Development Industry & Trade, Governor of Bahia Representatives of the Armed forces, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.

Eurocopter is proud of its longstanding and significant presence in Brazil through its industrial and commercial subsidiary Helibras, which will be celebrating its 35th anniversary next year. In fact, each division in the EADS Group also has achieved a successful track record in the country, thanks to projects such as the C-105 Amazonas (C-295), the modernization of the P-3 Maritime Patrol aircraft and the presidential Airbus.

But of course the most impressive in my eyes, are the more than 600 helicopters – all with Brazilian airworthiness certificates- produced in-country over the years thanks to the high level of local know-how and specialized skills.

During these years of continuous presence, Eurocopter has transferred both knowledge and technology, and an increasing number of jobs were created – growing from 260 Helibras employees in 2009 to more than 710 today. Even through times of economic struggle, we continued to believe and invest in Helibras and its capacity to locally promote Eurocopter aircraft.

We are especially happy to celebrate today an exciting next step in Helibras’ development – the inauguration of the new, modern EC725 assembly line, made possible by the support of many players.

This investment in the future of Helibras, along with the continued investments that have brought us where we are today, would not have been achieved without the valued partnership we share with the Brazilian government, the Armed Forces and local industry partners.

Beginning with the first "Esquilo" produced by Helibras for the Brazilian Navy, to the first Pumas operated by the Air Force and the re-creation of the Army Aviation, throughout all areas of Helibras’ development, our partners have been there to support us. And this time is no different.

It is with utmost appreciation that we thank the Brazilian Government, through the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Industry, the Brazilian Development Bank and the Armed Forces, for the confidence they have shown in giving us the opportunity to bring Helibras to a much higher level. Both President Lula initially and now President Dilma have allowed Eurocopter to showcase its unique expertise by transferring know-how to its subsidiary in Brazil with local co-shareholders MGI and Bueninvest, which has allowed us to keep our commitment to contribute to the development of a strong helicopter industry in Brazil.

In close cooperation with Helibras, we have been able to further expand our technology and know-how to no less than 15 local companies so far, bringing together a range of entities to develop a highly capable Brazilian industrial supply chain.

Investments are also being made to turn Helibras into a maintenance center of excellence – providing full logistics training and maintenance, repair & overhaul capabilities to support the Eurocopter helicopter fleets throughout the region, and to offer services right at our customers’ doorsteps.

I would like to talk about some other important events that are taking place in the perspective of our long-term commitment in Brazil.

Two weeks ago, the new Engineering Center at Helibras received the Eurocopter Design Authorized Organization Certificate. Helibras engineering was granted Level One recognition, which means that it is officially considered as an engineering pillar of the Eurocopter group in addition to France, Germany and Spain, confirming our commitment to the development of a locally conceived and built helicopter. This is big news!

Brazil considers Eurocopter and Helibras as preferred partners in the rotary-wing industry, and we are especially proud of this. You have trusted in us for your important projects (including investments in the H-XBR Project, as well as the modernization of the Army’s Panthers and Fennecs) and our granting of Level One approval to the Helibras Engineering Center confirms our trust in the country’s capabilities.

We now believe that it is time to take the entire Brazilian helicopter industry to the next level.

It is my intention to begin immediate discussions with the highest authorities to explore the in-country development of a Brazilian helicopter. Together with Eduardo Marson and my team, I am now prepared to entertain this conversation with President Dilma and Ministers Amorim and Pimentel to find the best way to proceed with our objective: the first-ever 100 percent designed and built Brazilian helicopter, to be delivered to the world market in the mid-20s.

Thank you for your attendance today for this important step in our ambitious plans for the future.

Lutz Bertling


HELIBRAS – Discurso do Presidente Eduardo Marson Link

HELIBRAS – Discurso Lutz Bertling CEO EUROCOPTER Link

Helibras inaugura fábrica em Itajubá Link

HELIBRAS – Inaugura en Itajubá, Brasil, importantes instalaciones de montaje para los helicópteros EC725 y EC225 (Español) Link

ATECH e CASSIDIAN juntam forças no fornecimento de Sistema Aviônico Avançado para os EC725 da MB Link

Produção nacional dos helicópteros EC-725 impulsionará indústria de defesa, diz Amorim Link

Blindagens do EC725 serão produzidas no Brasil Link


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