Boeing Gets Cozy with Embraer on KC-390

 - June 29, 2012, 12:06 PM
Boeing will help to market the KC-390 airlifter in a new agreement with Embraer. (Photo: Embraer)

Boeing and Embraer announced an extension of their April collaboration agreement on commercial aviation to the KC-390 airlifter program. The pair said they would “share some specific technical knowledge and evaluate markets where they may join their sales efforts for medium-lift military transport opportunities.” Boeing may help sell the KC-390 to “potential customers that had not been considered [as] initial market prospects,” they added.

It was not immediately apparent whether Boeing believes that the KC-390 could be sold to the U.S. military. When it becomes available from 2016, the KC-390 will compete with the Lockheed Martin C-130J and the Airbus Military A400M.

Boeing is trying to sell F/A-18 Super Hornets to Brazil and has already linked with the Brazilian subsidiary of Elbit Systems on new cockpit displays for that aircraft. Boeing recently established a corporate office in Brazil, adding to the earlier defense and space division presence there. The April agreement with Embraer covered commercial airplane efficiency and safety, research and technology and sustainable aviation biofuels.

Another contender for the country’s new fighter requirement is the Dassault Rafale. France has expressed interest in buying a dozen KC-390s, if the French jet is chosen.