Leonardo meets Italian trade unions and announces the consolidation of the process of diversifying its Grottaglie production site

Rome,  24 June 2024 17:39

The site, near Taranto, Puglia, in the south of Italy, has been selected for final assembly of the AW609 tiltrotor in Italy


Leonardo met with trade union representatives at the headquarters of Unindustria in Rome today to announce a further step in the diversification of its Grottaglie production site, a plant originally built for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner program.
During today's meeting with trade union representatives, Leonardo announced that it had selected the Grottaglie site for its particular features as the location for final assembly of the company’s AW609 tiltrotor in Italy. 

Leonardo has for some time been diversifying production at the Taranto plant through industrial activities under latest-generation programmes such as the Eurodrone wing, the fuselage of Vertical Aerospace's VX4 electric aircraft, and the fuselage of the prototype of Leonardo's remotely piloted Proteus helicopter. These programmes, still in the embryonic phase, already occupy a workforce of more than 100 people. 

The new MaTeRIA Lab (Materials Technology Research and InnovAtion Lab) has also taken shape in Grottaglie, a joint research laboratory between Leonardo and the Solvay group focusing on the development of new composite materials and production processes that are fundamental for the future of the aerospace industry. 

In a separate initiative, new premises are being set up to host the Aerotech Campus, an advanced education programme for engineering graduates, due to be held for the first time in Grottaglie in the 2024/2025 academic year.

The development of further strategic initiatives aims to redefine new scenarios for the Grottaglie site as part of Leonardo's broader strategy of ensuring a sustainable future for its Aerostructures Division, in which approximately 300 million euros have already been invested between 2019 and 2023. 

Lower growth in the production and delivery of the Boeing 787 required a four-month plant shutdown to align production volumes with the short-term reduction in demand. 

The 787 programme remains the market leader in medium-large passenger aircraft market segment, with orders (from the beginning of the programme to March 2024) for over 1,900 aircraft, over 1,100 of which have already been delivered, with positive prospects for increasing the production rate as early as the beginning of 2025.