Aerospace manufacturer Messier-Bugatti-Dowty to expand Walton facility in $100 million-plus project

Aerospace manufacturer Messier-Bugatti-Dowty to expand Walton facility in $100 million-plus project

Governor Matt Bevin announced today that Aircraft wheel and brake components maker Messier-Bugatti-Dowty, a subsidiary of French tech giant Safran, plans to expand its Northern Kentucky plant creating about 80 jobs with an investment of more than $100 million.

“Through the manufacturing and refurbishing of wheels and carbon brakes, the Messier-Bugatti-Dowty employees located here in Kentucky help make take-offs and landings safe for tens of thousands of people flying every day across the globe,” said Governor Bevin. “The company’s operations in Walton represent a pillar of the state’s aviation industry and manufacturing base. We are grateful for this expansion, and we’re proud to celebrate a productive relationship with Messier-Bugatti-Dowty and its parent company, Safran.”

The planned expansion aims to increase the Walton, KY plant’s production capacity to meet expected airline demand for wheels and carbon brakes.

Following the construction phase, from 2016 to 2018, the plant will add about 80 employees. The expansion will be located on the current Messier-Bugatti-Dowty site, near existing carbon production units, and will share some of the same infrastructure.

“Since being built in 1999, the Walton plant has undergone constant development to keep pace with our sales growth,”said Messier-Bugatti-Dowty Chief Executive Officer Vincent Mascré. “I would especially like to thank the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development for their support and their commitment to this project, which will enable us to boost our production capacity and meet our customers’ growing needs.”

The Walton plant’s clientele includes Delta, Spirit Airlines and Air Canada among other North American airlines. A variety of commercial and military aircraft models use it carbon brakes. In addition to the Walton facility, Messier-Bugatti-Dowty operates carbon production plants in Villeurbanne, France and Sendayan, Malaysia.

Messier-Bugatti-Dowty introduced carbon brakes on commercial aircraft in 1986, which are now the benchmark in high-performance braking. Offering energy absorption capacity two-to-three times greater than steel brakes, and reduced operating costs, carbon brakes deliver proven technological, economic and environmental advantages to airlines.

Messier-Bugatti-Dowty’s worldwide capabilities encompass the full product life cycle of aircraft landing and braking systems. That includes design, manufacturing, in-service support, repair and overhaul. The company is a partner to 30 commercial, military, business and regional aircraft manufacturers, and supports more than 25,000 aircraft making over 40,000 landings every day. The company has more than 7,000 employees at locations in Europe, North America and Asia.

Its corporate parent, Safran, employs 69,000 people worldwide in its three core businesses of aerospace, defense and security.

“This expansion by one of our premier manufacturers in Northern Kentucky will further energize the regional economy and provide additional jobs for hard-working Kentuckians. I welcome the news and thank Messier-Bugatti-Dowty for its continued investment,” said Sen. John Schickel, of Union.

Rep. Sal Santoro, of Florence, said the project speaks well of Northern Kentucky.

“This new expansion by Messier-Bugatti-Dowty underscores the strength and abilities of our workforce. As an exporter of its aerospace products, the company is able to take full advantage of the robust distribution and logistics infrastructure in Northern Kentucky. I’m glad to see such a valued corporate partner continue to both succeed and commit to our region,” Santoro said.

Boone County Judge-Executive Gary Moore welcomed the expansion.

“This project by one of the world’s premier aerospace companies further solidifies Northern Kentucky as a prime location offering businesses the resources to succeed. We support and encourage the growth of our corporate partners, and we celebrate the new jobs and investment that Messier-Bugatti-Dowty will bring with this expansion.  In 1999, when Messier-Bugatti-Dowty first located here with Northern Kentucky Tri-ED’s assistance, we thought this aerospace firm would grow and do well, and this expansion announcement is proof-positive,” Moore said.

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) at its January 28meeting preliminarily approved Messier-Bugatti for tax incentives up to $2.5 million through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of its investment over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

Also at its January meeting, KEDFA preliminarily approved Messier-Bugatti for up to $1 million in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.

In addition, the company is eligible to receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies are eligible to receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives. Last year, the Kentucky Skills Network trained more than 84,000 employees from more than 5,600 Kentucky companies.

For more information on Messier-Bugatti-Dowty, visit

A detailed community profile for Northern Kentucky can be found here.

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Information on Kentucky’s economic development efforts and programs is available at of the Cabinet for Economic Development can also join the discussion on Facebook or follow on Twitter. Watch the Cabinet’s “This is My Kentucky” video on YouTube.

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