Luton aerospace company part of 'vital' movement to aid UK economy

A Luton aerospace company is flying high after an independent report said it had a crucial role to play in supporting the UK economy.

By News Reporter
Monday, 30th November 2020, 5:00 pm
Leonardo is one of the UK's 'big four' industry partners in Team Tempest and is leading on complex electronics
Leonardo is one of the UK's 'big four' industry partners in Team Tempest and is leading on complex electronics

Aerospace engineering company Leonardo employs more than 1,000 people at its site in Capability Green, Luton.

The publication of an economic impact report last week by independent analysts Oxford Economics highlights the important role that UK-generated intellectual property (IP) will play in the nation’s economic recovery.

The report found that employees at Leonardo are 80% more productive than the national average, because the company generates high-tech intellectual property (IP) in Britain and exports it globally.

Leonardo managing director Norman Bone: “Creating IP in this country keeps people employed in high value jobs by generating exports, which is incredibly important as we kick-start the economy.”

Leonardo produces the UK’s AW159 Wildcat and AW101 Merlin helicopters and is at the heart of some of the country’s most advanced defence electronics developments.

These include the world beating new ECRS Mk2 radar for RAF Typhoon aircraft and being one of the founding UK members of the Tempest programme, which is developing the successor to Typhoon, which will go into service in 2035.

The company is also working with the Ministry of Defence to understand Britain’s aspirations for next-generation military technology, including drones, and is proposing a UK-built AW149 troop-transport helicopter to replace the RAF’s Puma fleet when the latter goes out of service.

Mr Bone added: “Creating IP in this country keeps people employed in high-value jobs by generating exports, which is incredibly important as we kick-start the economy.

“Ours are some of the country’s most stable jobs. We elected not to furlough anyone during the Covid-19 crisis, which has had a knock on benefit for our local economies.

"The important thing is that the UK government continues, alongside us, to invest in Britain’s high-tech engineering sector as we work towards economic recovery”.