Anniversary - 30 years of FACC

30 years of FACC! An outstanding success story, told in 3 decades.

Esther Nestle
23.07.2019
6 pictures
5 minutes

The Grossglockner. As Austria’s tallest mountain, “the roof of Austria”, it stands out from all other mountains in the country at a proud 3,798 metres high. Even if the car journey from the company headquarters in the town of Ried im Innkreis to this towering rock colossus with its prominent peak takes three hours, the Grossglockner symbolises the outstanding FACC success story, despite the 200-kilometre distance. Those who follow the traces of the company’s 30-year history and travel into the FACC past will even discover a direct alpine connection to the aerospace company. Enjoy the FACC summit ascent of a different kind!

From the construction of the first primary structure components to the flight into the leading index of the Vienna Stock Exchange

The aviation industry cannot avoid FACC, whose customer list reads as the `Who is Who´ of aerospace players. All global players who spontaneously spring to mind, no need to say more. And WHAT kind of orders. More than 3,500 employees from all over the world work in the Austrian aerospace enterprise on high-tech components for the aerospace industry. More than 500 technicians and engineers are putting their heads together in the Upper Austrian Innviertel, where they put their concentrated expert know-how together in the ultra-modern FACC Technology Center, developing the future of aviation. Meanwhile, in the neighbouring Test Center CoLT, they get the best out of fibre composite materials and components for the aircraft and their operators.

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The construction of primary structural components marks the premier class in aircraft component construction and shows: The company has reached the top. Another success indicator is the inclusion of the FACC share in the leading index of the Vienna Stock Exchange in 2018, just four years after going public. In the same year, the turnover flew to a record level of 780 million euros.

By the way, FACC is currently investing around 30 million euros in the construction of a new high-tech production facility in (almost) neighbouring Croatia.

Second decade up to 2009: higher and higher.

Tier 1 turn key supplier (A380). Development and manufacturing partner (B787).

Boeing, Airbus, Bombardier, Embraer, Rolls-Royce – all of them and much more pass the door handle to each other at FACC. The company has finally established itself as a successful system supplier. In addition to technologies that are flying higher and higher, the strategic orientation is also increasing more and more as the Chinese aviation group Xi’an Aircraft Industrial Corporation XAC acquires a majority stake in FACC: full steam ahead to new shores, in particular to the booming Asian-Pacific markets.

The first order from Embraer for A380 and A350 structural components. Components for the B787, the first contracts with Chinese partners: components for ARJ21 cabins.

First decade up to 1999: full steam ahead!

From a simple parts supplier to a comprehensive system supplier

The company’s going full throttle. In 1991, FACC takes off for the first time as a design and development partner for complete assemblies. In 1997, the first development order for a complete FACC cabin is received. New halls are shooting out of the ground: for manufacturing, production and administration as well as for research and development; the foundation for a comprehensive system supplier is thus laid. Further production facilities are added, for example a plant for the manufacture of aircraft interiors. Other orders and customers also include the first orders for business jet equipment from Bombardier, interiors for the A320 and spoilers for the A340.

FACC’s official birth:

October 1989 – FACC does its own thing

FACC becomes fledged. The already independent Fischer Advanced Composite Components division – FACC for short – is spun off and from now on completely does its own thing = product solutions around aircraft parts. The spin-off became more and more apparent in the previous years. When the young team around the two enthusiastic visionaries Pepi Fischer and Walter Stephan began to develop their first products for the aviation industry in 1981, their success quickly changed its pace from a trot to a gallop. It all started with support struts for Airbus. Other orders soon followed, such as door frames, side wall cladding, floor panels and cladding for aircraft cockpits.

30 years of FACC – the way from the piste to the skies

The alpine connection leads straight to the great Fischer ski empire where this second success story grew in the 1980s, until it finally cut itself off from her ski mother in 1989. That’s how it happened: Fischer Ski has always worked on better materials for skis. The boards had to be lighter and lighter, and also extremely resilient. The same criteria that aircraft manufacturers have always chased after and will always chase after!

So this is the story of how the extremely light and extremely resilient composite materials, developed for the construction of skis, were put to a completely new use. Away from the piste, off into the air. What easily withstands the pistes of Grossglockner and Co. also cuts an excellent figure in higher spheres.

We look up one last time at the 30 year high FACC peak of success and shout: Happy birthday! Let’s go, into the next 30 years of FACC, and: Always stay on top …

To finish off, here are the highlights of the 30th anniversary celebration of FACC:

by Esther Nestle

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