INTERNATIONAL: Dassault appointment paves way for sell-off

PARIS: French aircraft group Dassault Aviation has appointed Gerard David as its new communications and external relations director.

PARIS: French aircraft group Dassault Aviation has appointed Gerard

David as its new communications and external relations director.



The move comes at a time when European firms, including Dassault, are

looking at creating a regional aerospace group to compete against US

giants such as Lockheed Martin and Boeing.



Last month, the French government transferred its 46 per cent share in

Dassault to state-owned aerospace and defence firm Aerospatiale, in a

bid to strengthen the group’s position in the world market ahead of

proposed privatisation.



David will report to group chairman and CEO Serge Dassault. He will

oversee a 20-strong team covering PR, media relations, advertising and

internal communications.



David takes over from the previous communications head, Admiral

Jean-Pierre Robillard, who held the post for over three years. Robillard

is now working as an adviser to the chairman on naval issues.



A company spokeswoman said: ’We are in a period of change. Gerard will

be responsible for maintaining the brand image of Dassault.’



Before joining Dassault Aviation, David spent five years as external

relations head at French aviation firm Intertechnique. He previously

handled national and international PR for the town of Lyon for four

years.



Dassault Aviation designs and manufactures military aircraft including

the Atlantique, Rafale and Mirage. It also produces aircraft for private

businesses.



The company numbers some 12,000 employees over 11 sites across

France.



It registered a group turnover of around pounds 2.1 billion in 1997.



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