Cassidian Test et Services, one of the world's leading test benches for aeronautical equipment, officially confirms the sale of its business by Airbus Group. Ex-division of the defence branch of Airbus Group, the new entity, called Spherea, becomes a mid-sized company (ETI) with 500 employees with a turnover of 100 million euros in 2013.
The new shareholding is shared between ACE Management (43.04%), IRDI - Regional Institute for Industrial Development - (14.35%), Brienne Financial (6.70%) and the company's executives (2.44%). Airbus Group remains a 33.48% shareholder.
The arrival of the two investors will allow Spherea to finance its development efforts while preserving all jobs and sites: "We had reached the limit of growth at Airbus Group. ACE Management and IRDI allow us to make the necessary investments in research and development and internationally; the latter represents more than half of our CA" confirms Christian Dabasse, CEO and President of Spherea. "A mix of organic and external growth will be one of the preferred levers," he concludes.
150 to 200 million euros in sales by 2018
The aeronautical and regional anchorage of the two main shareholders, ACE Management and IRDI, is one of the major strengths of SPHEREA's development project. In 2008, Aerofund - a fund managed by ACE Management and dedicated to structuring and strengthening the aviation sector - helped support the development of many companies. IRDI, which has been supporting many industrial companies for more than 30 years, has had several successes to its credit in the Midi-Pyrénées and Aquitaine regions. The joint successes of its new shareholders reinforce SPHEREA's ambitions for a turnover of 150 to 200 million euros by 2018.
Innovation and team spirit
By focusing its development on innovation and team spirit, SPHEREA wants to position people clearly at the heart of its know-how. "We are at a turning point in our history. By taking our independence, we become an autonomous entity, with means that live up to our ambitions and a common and shared corporate culture. The pride of belonging, the commitment and the conviction of the employees are essential to the success of SPHEREA" recalls Mr. Dabasse. This is an essential development, which also allows the company to regain all the agility and responsiveness necessary to conquer new markets, especially that of emerging countries such as China, India, Brazil and Russia.
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