Global technology leader will expand in Orlando and Melbourne

LONDON, United Kingdom – Today, while attending the Farnborough Air Show, Governor Rick Scott announced that Thales, a global technology leader for the aerospace, transport, defense and security markets, will expand in Florida, adding 327 new  jobs in Melbourne and 173 new jobs in Orlando. The project will invest more than $20 million in local communities.

Governor Rick Scott said, “I am proud to announce that Thales chose Florida to expand and create 500 new jobs for Florida families. We met with Thales at the Paris Air Show last year and it’s great to make this exciting announcement today in London. I look forward to seeing their continued success in our state.”

Founded more than 10 years ago, Thales’ InFlyt Experience unit has rapidly grown to become a world leader in the in-flight entertainment and connectivity (IFEC) market. Nearly 100 major international airlines have selected their IFEC systems and solutions, including passenger systems that integrate broadband communications and accommodate personal electronic devices.

Alan Pellegrini, President and CEO of Thales USA, said, “Thanks to the leadership of Governor Scott and other state and local officials, we are pleased to be able to further expand our competitive footprint in Florida. The state’s pro-business agenda is helping to enable our targeted growth.”

Florida is home to more than 2,000 aerospace and aviation companies employing nearly 80,000 workers, and has long been a major hub for flight training and MRO. Florida is the #2 state in aviation, aerospace and space establishments, and its valuable industry assets include 22 airports with runways of 10,000+ feet and a full range of industry activities.

Executive Vice President and COO of Enterprise Florida Crystal Sircy said, “I want to congratulate Thales on their growth and thank them for continuing to invest in their home state. Florida’s aviation industry is growing and changing the industry, thanks to leaders like Thales, and we look forward to watching their continued success in South Florida.”

Partners in the expansion include Enterprise Florida, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, Orange County/City of Orlando, City of Melbourne, Orlando Economic Development Commission and CareerSource Florida.

Cissy Proctor, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, said, “Florida’s aerospace industry is a leader in the nation and the world, and we are pleased that international aviation companies like Thales are choosing Florida to expand their businesses. The highly skilled workforce available in Melbourne and Orlando will help Thales thrive as it continues to grow in Florida.”

President and CEO of the EDC of Florida’s Space Coast Lynda Weatherman said “Competition for these projects is becoming more intense, placing a stronger emphasis on strategic collaboration. It is because of our longstanding relationship with EFI and the City of Melbourne that enabled us to broaden Thales’ international footprint into our community.”

CareerSource Florida President Chris Hart IV said, “As Thales significantly expands in Brevard and Orange counties, the CareerSource Florida network will be there to help grow its skilled workforce through customized training and other business services as needed. We are proud to partner with Thales and applaud its investment in Central Florida.”

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About Thales
Thales is a global technology leader for the Aerospace, Transport, Defense and Security markets. With 62,000 employees in 56 countries, Thales reported sales of €14 billion in 2015. With over 22,000 engineers and researchers, Thales has a unique capability to design and deploy equipment, systems and services to meet the most complex security requirements. Its unique international footprint allows it to work closely with its customers all over the world.

Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) is a partnership between Florida’s businesses and government leaders and is the principal economic development organization for Florida. EFI facilitates job growth through recruitment and retention, international trade and exporting, promotion of sporting events, and capital funding programs to assist small and minority businesses. EFI recently launched “Florida – The Future is Here” to promote the state as the nation’s premier business destination.

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