Canada’s Bombardier has agreed to sell its Belfast-based aerospace business to US-based Spirit AeroSystems as part of a $1.1bn (£840m) deal. The business is Northern Ireland’s biggest manufacturer employing 3,600 people and was put up for sale by Bombardier in May.
Its history dates back to the 1930s when Shorts established its first factory in Belfast. The deal will see Kansas-based Spirit pay £390m in cash, and take on liabilities worth £460m, to acquire aerostructure operations in Northern Ireland, Morocco and Texas.
Spirit, whose global operations include a site in Prestwick, Scotland, makes parts for aeroplane makers Boeing and Airbus. Bombardier’s operations in Northern Ireland are in Belfast, Newtownards and Dunmurry. It makes wings for the Airbus A220.