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International -- The Stars of Europe -- Challengers
Philippe Camus (int'l edition)
Co-CEO -- EADS -- France
It may have an ungainly name, but when the European Aeronautic Defense & Space Co. takes flight this July in a multibillion-dollar initial public offering, the Old World will finally have a player able to deal as an equal with the likes of U.S. aerospace giants Boeing Co. or Lockheed Martin Corp. Combining France's Aerospatiale-Matra, Germany's DaimlerChrysler Aerospace (DASA), and Spain's CASA in the largest cross-border industrial merger in Europe's history, EADS will have $21 billion in sales. "The whole sense of EADS is to carry the same weight as the American groups," says co-CEO Philippe Camus. "It's more and more of a global market."
EADS represents a personal triumph for the mild-mannered but intense Camus, who will run the company with DASA CEO Rainer Hertrich. Camus, 52, was instrumental in the on-again, off-again secret talks with DaimlerChrysler and the French government late last year, which led to the EADS merger. But Camus, a key figure in French aerospace since joining the Matra missile group in 1982, never lost faith that a deal could be hammered out.
The jewel in the crown of EADS will be its 80% stake in Airbus Industrie, which will now switch from a marketing consortium to a real corporation. That should help Airbus, already neck-and-neck with Boeing in the race for new jet orders, to further boost its competitiveness, Camus says. You can be sure that Europe's Mr. Aerospace will be leading the charge.Return to top