Bombardier snatches Boeing exec to lead European sales office

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Bombardier has hired a top Boeing sales executive to head up its new European sales office, the Canadian airframer has revealed to ATI.

As Bombardier Commercial Aircraft vice-president, sales - Europe, Steven Aliment will lead Bombardier's commercial sales activities in Europe, where his approach to regionally-based sales initiatives will help raise the airframer's sales profiles for the Q400 turboprop, the CRJ Series of regional jets and the newly-launched CSeries mainline jetliner, says Bombardier.

The sales office will be based in Munich, where Bombardier's new regional support office resides, and is part of the firm's "strategic vision to want to be there among our customers", says a Bombardier spokesman.

"We have a big customer footprint in Europe. You just need to be in their time zone. There is nothing like being there when the customer needs you. Customers look at their account executive as the number one point of liaison."

German operator Lufthansa is a major customer to Bombardier. It recently ordered the geared turbofan-powered CSeries for its Swiss International Air Lines subsidiary.

A 25-year veteran of the aviation industry, Aliment joined Bombardier from Boeing in the spring of 2009 "bringing with him a broad range of experience in the marketing and selling of commercial aircraft throughout Europe", says Bombardier.

As vice-president sales for Boeing Commercial Aviation Services (CAS), Aliment led a team of 30 sales directors worldwide. He was also instrumental in developing Boeing's commercial aircraft initiatives in Europe as director of sales based in Brussels and Amsterdam for a total of five years. And he served as director of European sales and marketing for the Boeing Sea Launch programme. A native of Seattle, Aliment is currently stationed in Toronto. He will be stationed at Munich in the fall, and intends to build up the staff there. "We'll earn the right to bring more people into the country," he tells ATI.