Rep. Rick Larsen, tapped by Governor Jay Inslee to lead the Washington state delegation to the 50th International Paris Air Show, today joined Umbra Cuscinetti, Inc., to announce the company’s move into a newly-renovated, energy-efficient 68,000 square foot facility in Everett, WA.
Umbra Cuscinetti is the U.S. entity of Italian-owned Umbra Group. This move allows for the potential addition of 100 manufacturing and engineering jobs and puts the company’s product design and research and development for emerging energy markets under one roof at the new facility near Paine Field.
“Umbra Cuscinetti’s growing presence in Washington state adds to our base of more than 131,000 highly skilled aerospace workers who are the best in the world at their jobs. I congratulate Umbra Group on their continued success and their commitment to energy efficient business practices and products,” said Gov. Jay Inslee.
“We have been growing steadily since 2009 and are so proud of the work and dedication of the employees that have resulted in us needing to move into a larger facility,” relayed Bob Collett, CEO of Umbra Cuscinetti in Everett. “We look forward to being able to provide even more for our customers with the additional space.”
“I congratulate Umbra Cuscinetti on their expansion and look forward to the new job openings in Everett,” Larsen said. “This is just one more sign of the bright future for aerospace workers in Snohomish County, and why we must actively pursue the governor’s strategy to expand the state’s aerospace workforce.”
Later at the air show site, Larsen and others joined Philippe Forestier, Executive VP for Global Affairs and Communities of Dassault Systemes, to announce a new joint license agreement with the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges to make the company’s CATIA 5 3D design software available to all 34 of Washington’s two-year colleges. The Center of Excellence for Advanced Manufacturing and Aerospace signed the agreement on behalf of the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges.
“More students will now be able to train for jobs using the cutting-edge technology required by Boeing and other manufacturing companies,” Larsen said. “And more Washington businesses will find the highly-skilled workers they need to succeed in a highly-competitive, global marketplace.”
Members of the Washington delegation also met with Zodiac Aerospace, a $4.5 billion French company that now has five business units and more than 2,000 employees in Washington state, covering engineering, advanced composite materials manufacturing, cabin interiors, lighting solutions, and in-flight entertainment systems. At Zodiac Cabin Interiors in Bellingham – formerly HeathTechna – employment surged from 250 to 800 in the past three years. Funding from Washington’s Workforce Investment Act played a key role in supporting that rapid expansion.
“We congratulate and thank Zodiac for their continued strong growth,” Inslee said. “I’m committed to seeing that we bolster STEM education and add engineering seats in our state universities so we can deliver the current and future workforce that will attract and grow thriving global aerospace companies in Washington state.”
The company recently announced creation of Zodiac Center that will consolidate many of the engineering units and coordinate Washington operations in Everett.
“Everett is proud to be propelled by one of the world’s most premier aerospace clusters,” Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson said. "Innovative companies such as Umbra Cuscinetti, Pacifica Engineering and Zodiac Aerospace, among others, are attracted to Washington state and Everett for our talent, experience and strategic location."
Hexcel, another large European company that supplies advanced composites to customers including Airbus, Boeing and Sikorsky Helicopters, also met with Washington delegates led by Larsen, including King County Executive Dow Constantine. Hexcel has some 800 employees in Kent and recently doubled their Burlington space at Skagit Airport to accommodate 200 workers in their engine program.
Additionally, Larsen led face-to-face meetings to match international company needs with Washington state aerospace talent, businesses and regions. These included: Spirit Aerosystems, the world’s largest first tier aero-structures maker based with 15,000 employees in North America, Asia and Europe; Strata, a company of the government-owned Mubadala Group from United Arab Emirates that designs, develops and manufactures aircraft wings and other major units; and Simair, a French company that designs, engineers, manufactures and maintains aerostructures and equipment.
The delegation group closed out the day at the air show site by meeting to discuss potential additional work in Washington for the 767 tanker project. Raytheon has 155 employees at the Navy Undersea Warfare Center base in Keyport and the company reports supporting 649 supplier jobs with 206 Washington state suppliers, over 60 percent of which are small businesses.
Larsen will return to the International Paris Air Show tomorrow, when he’ll lead discussions with United Technologies, MTorres USA, SAFRAN, Rolls Royce, GE Aviation, a trade delegation from Nagoya, Japan, Airbus North America, and Crane aerospace and Electronics.
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