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Mon, Apr 28, 2008

Reports: EADS Plans Sale Of Socata To French Group

European Consortium Calls GA Unit "Key Element"

A French newspaper reports European Aeronautic Defense and Space Co. (EADS) -- in its continuing quest for cash to offset recent losses, and the continuing decline of the US dollar -- plans to sell off its Socata division to a French aerospace, nuclear and automotive group.

Citing union representative Lucien Cazenave, the Journal du Dimanche reports EADS hopes the sale of Socata to Daher will offset the loss of funds the European consortium had planned to reap by selling off three Airbus manufacturing sites in Germany. Those talks fell through last month.

Daher told the French newspaper "nothing is finalized" over the sale, reports Forbes.

EADS officials would not confirm reports of the sale, but did speak of such a development obliquely. "EADS Socata and Daher will evaluate the future of their relationship," the consortium said Friday. "This could include the pursuit of additional joint new business efforts, and -- in the case of key wins, the possible entry of Daher in the capital of EADS Socata."

Best known to US customers as the manufacturer of the TB20 Trinidad, and highly-successful TBM 850 turboprop, EADS Socata also manufactures aerospace structures. The company partnered with Daher in 2007 to bid for work on the upcoming Airbus A350 XWB.

FMI: www.socata.eads.net

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