In September, ICON Aircraft announced that is expanding its manufacturing operations into Mexico with a construction of a 300,000 SF new manufacturing facility in Tijuana, that is expected to employ 1000 people, once fully operational.
The new plant will begin production in November and will produce composite airframe components for its sport aircraft keeping the rest of the process in California where the firm is headquartered.
In a press conference ICON´s CEO and Founder Kirk Hawkins mentioned this expansion is driven by an increasing demand of its A5, and stated that the establishment of the new facility will not affect the jobs of any of ICON’s current Vacaville-based employees. The firm will control all manufacturing operations at both facilities, and composite parts will be made by ICON employees using ICON tooling, processes, and quality standards.
According to Kirk Hawkins there were four major reasons f
or choosing Tijuana, after evaluating various sites in and outside Mexico: “There is a skilled workforce available, the logistics for us are great because we can have real-time communications with our headquarters that are based out of California. Tijuana has a thriving aerospace industry and a robust supply chain, the infrastructure and the competitive costs.”
This project will add 1000 jobs to Mexico’s leading aerospace cluster. ICON will join global players in the industry such as Eaton, Delphi, Zodiac Aerospace, Esterline, Tyco Electronics, and many others thriving in Tijuana.
The city, once known as the “World’s TV Capital” also holds a 50 year story in aerospace manufacturing, hosting the most well-developed environment for aerospace in Mexico, encompassing a sophisticated manufacturing base of 37 A&D companies, highly experienced workforce, certified suppliers, engineering talent, and strong linkage with local universities.