Thales Group

Thales Group

Infobox Company
company_name = Thales Group
company_type = Public: Euronext|HO
foundation = 6 December 2000
location_city = Neuilly-sur-Seine
location_country = France
key_people = Denis Ranque (Chairman & CEO)
Alex Dorrian Executive vice-president
industry = Aerospace, Defence and IT
products = Tactical radios, Remote Weapon Systems, RADAR, Infantry Mobility Vehicles
divisions =

revenue = €10,288 million (Y/E 2004)
operating_income = €729 million
net_income = €198 million
num_employees = 68,000 (2007)
parent =
subsid = Thales Communications, Thales Air Defence Limited, Thales Underwater Systems, Thales Nederland [ [ Thales ] ]
homepage = []
footnotes =
The Thales Group (Euronext|HO) is a French electronics company delivering mission-critical information systems and services for the Aerospace, Defense, and Security markets. It is headquartered in Neuilly-sur-Seine (in the suburbs of Paris) and its stock is listed on the Euronext Paris.

The company changed its name to Thales from Thomson-CSF in December 2000 shortly after the £1,300 million acquisition of Racal Electronics plc, a UK defence electronics group. It is now partially state-owned by the French State, and has operations in more than 50 countries. It has 70,000 employees and generated over 13,000 million euros in revenues in 2006. The Group is ranked as the 485th largest company by Fortune 500 Global and is the 9th largest defence contractor in the world. [cite web|url= |title=Defense News Top 100 |accessdate=2006-05-30 | ] . 63% of its total sales are military sales.

The Thales Group is named after the Greek philosopher Thales, and as such would be (pronEng|ˈθeɪliːz or "THEH-leez") in English. However, the French owners tend to prefer their pronunciation of IPA2|talɛs or sometimes IPA| [ˈtɑlɛs]


Thales' predecessor, Thomson-CSF, evolved from "Compagnie Française Thomson-Houston" (CFTH), which was established in 1893. However Thomson-CSF itself was established in 1968 when Thomson-Brandt (the renamed CFTH) merged its electronics arm with that of "Compagnie Générale de Télégraphie Sans Fil" (CSF).

Thales formed a joint venture with Raytheon in June, 2001 to combine their radar and communications systems divisions. Named ThalesRaytheonSystems, the firm is 50% owned by both parent companies.

In 2002 Thales set up the joint venture company Armaris with the French shipbuilder DCN to offer a total "bottom up" shipbuilding capability.

In 2002, Thales Broadcast Multimedia, a former subsidiary of Thales, provided China with standard short-wave radio-broadcasting equipment designed for general public radio-broadcasting. Although the contract was not at all for the purpose of jamming foreign radio stations broadcasting to China, it now appears that this is what the ALLISS antennas are being used for.

In 2003 Thales UK's design won the competition for the Royal Navy Future Carrier (CVF) and the company now participates in an alliance company with BAE Systems and the UK Ministry of Defence. This Thales design may form the basis of the Future French aircraft carrier which the company has agreed to build with DCN.

In 2006 Thales were given the green light to buy out Australian Defence Industries, a major manufacturer of such military equipment as smokeless gunpowder and the Bushmaster IMV. As of September 06, all ADI branding has been replaced with Thales, and the website templates have been changed.

Alcatel deal

In April, 2006, Thales announced it would be acquiring Alcatel's space business (67% of Alcatel Alenia Space and 33% of Telespazio), and Alcatel's Rail Signalling Solutions division in a deal which also raised Alcatel's ownership of Thales to 21.66 percent. The French government would also decrease its ownership in Thales to 27.1 percent from 31.3 percent as part of the acquisition. According to an Alcatel Press Room Web page of April 5, 2006, the deal would also include the Systems Integration activities (those not dedicated to telecoms operators, and covering mainly the transport and energy sectors).

Areas of business

Thales Group has made many electronic devices and equipments used by the French Armed Forces from its past as Thomson-CSF, it made the SPECTRA helmet for the army and the gendarmerie. It worked with Dassault Aviation on the Rafale and made its SPECTRA defensive aids. Thales often worked with DCNS and designed the electronics used on French ships, it is involved in the construction of both the Horizon and FREMM programs. Thales, as Thomson-CSF, was involved in the Taiwan frigates scandal part of the sale of La Fayette class frigates to Taiwan. It is also present in Eurosam as Thomson-CSF was a founder of the consortium along Aérospatiale and Alenia Aeronautica. In February 2004, Thales was awarded a contract for a new command and control system for the French Navy, the SIC 21, that will be fitted on the Charles de Gaulle, many vessels and shore locations. The Future French aircraft carrier involves Thales as the main designer of the ship too. Thales is also working on X-ray imaging, finances, energy and operating commercial satellites.

Thales has a worldwide presence. Its large presence in the UK (largely as a result of the Racal acquisition) has resulted in several high profile contracts. The UK is the country where Thales has the strongest presence after France itself. The company's design won the competition for the Royal Navy Future Carrier (CVF). It is part of the Airtanker consortium, the winning bid for the RAF's Future Strategic Tanker Aircraft. Thales UK won the contract for the British Army UAV programme, Watchkeeper. It also produces the SWARM remote weapon station.

Thales is also a major manufacturer of in-flight entertainment onboard airliners. Thales' primary competitors in this area of business include Panasonic Avionics Corporation, Rockwell Collins, and LiveTV (originally owned by Thales, now owned by JetBlue).

Financial information

Thales' major shareholders are the French state (27.1%), Alcatel-Lucent (21.6%) and Dassault Group (5%).

ee also

* Thomson-CSF - Related history before 2000
* Thomson SA
* Thales Air Defence Limited
* Thales Underwater Systems
* Thales Nederland
* Thales Optronics


Thales Group Profile []

External links

* [ Thales Group website]
* [ Company profile on Yahoo!]

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