Special report: Israel’s aerospace industry

Flight International publishes my special report on Israel’s aerospace industry on Tuesday. Several of the articles have already appeared online. The feature includes profiles of Israel’s three largest aerospace companies – Israel Aerospace Industries, Elbit Systems and Rafael. I’ll add the link to the profile on Elbit Systems after it becomes available.

I want to thank my editors for giving me the fascinating opportunity to spend a week touring one of the world’s hottest and most innovative centers of aerospace technology. I’d also like to thank my guide on the trip – Arie Egozie, our knowledgeable and helpful correspondent in Tel Aviv, who facilitated my path through Israel’s aerospace companies.


Introduction

Globalisation came early to Israel’s aerospace and defence industry. Lacking a domestic market large enough to support several major players, Israeli companies turned to the export market, achieving remarkable success in competition with the best technology offered by Western, Russian and – more recently – Chinese firms.

In the process, Israeli industry largely avoided the consolidation frenzy that swept the USA and Europe after the early 1990s. Four major firms today dominate Israel’s industrial landscape, yet remain minuscule compared with their foreign rivals.

Time may be running out on the status quo. Competitive pressures abroad will grow as militaries cut spending.

The paradox of consolidation paradox looms. To continue to grow, Israel’s industrial footprint must begin shrinking.



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