In a move to straighten out its 787 jet program supply chain, the Boeing Co. will buy a problematic supplier´s shares of a Dreamliner assembly facility in South Carolina. Boeing announced Friday it will acquire Vought Aircraft Industries´ stake in Global Aeronautica LLC, a fuselage sub- assembly facility for Boeing´s 787 Dreamliner jet. Only last November, Vought admitted it was one of the weakest links among Boeing´s global 787 suppliers, who are responsible for designing and building major chunks of the Dreamliner. Boeing has cited supplier and assembly issues as explanations why the 787 is running nearly a year behind schedule.
The deal allows Vought to "focus on its primary business of delivering quality aft fuselage structures for the 787," said Pat Shanahan, Boeing´s vice president of the 787 program. Boeing will enter a joint venture for Global Aeronautica with the North American subsidiary of Alenia Aeronautica, which also builds 787 sections in Italy. Workers at Global Aeronautica, located near Vought, assemble Alenia´s 787 structures along with sections from other Boeing partners.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.