Acquisition of RUAG Aerospace Services becomes legally effective

The acquisition of RUAG Aerospace Services GmbH in Oberpfaffenhofen by General Atomics Europe GmbH, which was announced in mid-October 2020, has been completed. The formal closing of the transaction took place on February 28, 2021.

General Atomics Europe (GA-Europe) is expanding its product and service portfolio to include maintenance and repair of business aircraft and military helicopters, as well as production and maintenance of the Dornier 228. The previous parent company of RUAG Aerospace Services, the Swiss technology group RUAG International, is now focusing on its aerostructures activities (RUAG Aerostructures) at the Oberpfaffenhofen site.

Through this acquisition, GA-Europe is strengthening its market position in the aviation industry, including both civil and military sectors, as well as manned and unmanned operations. The Oberpfaffenhofen site's approximately 420 employees will be retained. GA-ATS, formerly known as RUAG Aerospace Services (RUAG AS), will operate as a subsidiary of General Atomics Europe GmbH.

With the acquisition, General Atomics Europe will grow to a technology group with more than 1,000 employees and sees great potential for growth and innovation in both civil and military aviation. GA-Europe will also develop its existing business and expand the Oberpfaffenhofen site to become the European aviation core of the company. This will concentrate key operational aviation activities of the GA-Europe Group in Oberpfaffenhofen. In addition to expanding the existing business, there are plans to add service areas such as component overhaul and engineering services. The Oberpfaffenhofen facility's highly qualified employees and comprehensive aviation approvals provide the best conditions for this.

Strengthening military expertise - new prospects for civil cargo aviation

Harald Robl, Managing Director of General Atomics Europe, explained: "We have prepared ourselves well for this takeover. To this end, we have developed a strategic concept for the future that will open up new growth and value creation prospects for the Oberpfaffenhofen site far beyond the existing business areas, despite the current economic crisis. For example, we see great potential for the combination of know-how relating to the Do228 and the expertise of General Atomics in the field of unmanned aircraft. We believe we can play a key role in driving innovation in civil cargo aviation. At the same time, we are clearly committed to our Group's market-leading position in the field of unmanned military systems. We are convinced that we will also offer an attractive range of products and services for the German armed forces and be a reliable partner in this area."

On the occasion of the signing of the contract, GA-Europe Managing Director Harald Robl expressly thanked the Bavarian State Government for its constructive support of the takeover: "Our future concept for the Oberpfaffenhofen site immediately met with an extremely positive response from the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs. We would particularly like to thank State Secretary Roland Weigert, who, on behalf of Minister Hubert Aiwanger, supported our plans for the further development of the site from the outset and provided constructive assistance."

Felix Ammann, former Managing Director of RUAG Aerospace Services GmbH, thanked the employees of RUAG Aerospace Services for their excellent cooperation: "RUAG AS consists of a highly competent and committed team. I would also like to thank them on behalf of RUAG International for their top commitment and outstanding performance over the past 18 years. High-tech is and will remain at home here in Oberpfaffenhofen. We are delighted to have found a strategic investor in General Atomics Europe, which has developed a convincing future concept for the site."

In addition to the acquisition of RUAG AS, the GA-Europe Group recently took a further step towards strengthening its aviation footprint in Europe with the European Regional Sustainment Network (ERSN), the Group-wide network for supporting European customers. In future, this network will be managed from GA-Europe Holding in Dresden. The aim is to be able to meet the needs of European customers even better and, above all, even faster. The new location in Oberpfaffenhofen will also be involved in this and will make a growing contribution.


Press contact


Elisabeth Mühle

Head of Marketing and Communications​

General Atomics Europe GmbH​