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GKN to Buy Boeing's Military Plane Unit

October 20, 2000|Bloomberg News

GKN, a British aerospace and automotive parts maker, said it will buy Boeing Co.'s St. Louis-based military plane structures unit for $61 million. GKN also is reorganizing its aerospace business, cutting 600 jobs and closing parts plants in Carson; Wallingford, Conn.; and Avonmouth, England. In addition, Boeing said it's cutting 300 jobs at the St. Louis factory. As a result, the Boeing unit that GKN is buying will employ 1,200 workers and expects 2001 sales of $300 million, which will boost GKN's aerospace sales to $800 million. The business makes carbon fiber and aluminum frame and fuselage parts for the Navy's F/A-18E/F fighter and the Air Force's C-17 cargo jet. GKN also will become a supplier for Boeing's Joint Strike Fighter project. Boeing is the world's largest maker of aircraft and the second-biggest weapons supplier. It is also the biggest private employer in Southern California. Boeing said in June it was selling the St. Louis unit to cut costs and focus on design, final assembly and services such as maintenance. Boeing shares fell $2.31 to close at $58.44 on the New York Stock Exchange.

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