Embraer and Boeing announced Monday at the Dubai Air Show that the joint venture to promote and develop new markets for the KC-390 multi-purpose transport jet will be called “Boeing Embraer – Defense“, with 51% stake of the Brazilian manufacturer.
The two companies also renamed the KC-390 which is now called the C-390 Millennium – the former designation will be used only by the Brazilian Air Force (FAB).
Like the other joint venture, Boeing Brasil Commercial, which will take over the commercial aircraft division, Boeing Embraer – Defense also depends on regulatory approvals as well as commercial details between the two companies. It is expected that the start of operation will occur during the first half of 2020.
“Boeing Embraer – Defense will build on our companies’ history of collaboration across commercial and defense aerospace to unlock significant value in the state-of-the-art C-390 Millennium as it enters service and leads the next generation of airlift and air mobility aircraft,” said Marc Allen, Boeing’s president of Embraer Partnership and Group Operations.
“The name of our joint venture represents the strong partnership between Embraer and Boeing that will strengthen the global competitiveness of this incredible aircraft and broaden the target markets, developing and generating greater value for the C-390 program to offer the best for our future customers,” said Jackson Schneider, President and CEO, Embraer Defense & Security.
C-130 Hercules competitor
The C-390 is the largest military aircraft ever developed in Brazil. The project had its starting point due to the FAB’s need to replace the C-130 Hercules transport turboprop with a jet that offered superior performance in speed, load capacity and versatility.
Unveiled in 2007, the C-390 program started in 2009 and the first prototype flew in 2015. The FAB ordered 28 tactical freighter units and received the first aircraft in September – the second aircraft will be delivered by the end of the year. In August, Portugal announced the purchase of five C-390s to be delivered in 2023.
The partnership with Boeing aims to broaden the C-390 Millennium’s operating market to take on the famous Lockheed Martin turboprop which, despite its age, still dominates this category of aircraft.