Labinal applies high technology to aircraft wiring

Karen Bomba was named Chairman and CEO of Labinal (Safran group) in September 2010 after holding a number of management positions in the aerospace industry, including with Safran. Here she explains her strategic objectives for Labinal, a world leader in aircraft wiring.

How would you describe Labinal's current position?
Labinal is really at the cutting edge in terms of operational excellence and the deployment of Lean-Sigma initiatives. I knew this when I was CEO of Messier-Bugatti in the United States, and it was amply confirmed when I joined Labinal last September. The continuous improvement of our processes and our strong focus on making decisions based on financial criteria are clearly our main strengths. Our system of performance indicators and metrics is organized so that all of our business units, even the smallest, can always keep a very close watch on their financial results. Labinal continues to move more design and production work in countries in the US dollar zone or rapidly developing countries. In short, operational excellence and our international footprint have driven our growth and increased our market share in recent years.

In what direction will you be taking Labinal?
We have to expand our range of products and services. We must offer high technology, value-adding solutions. This is vital for our long-term competitiveness, especially if we expect to support the development of the next generation of airplanes, which should enter service towards 2025. By building on our current business model, which has proven effective, we should also be able to develop the products and services that will make us as competitive in terms of technological innovation as we are today in operational excellence.

How do you plan to prepare Labinal for this key challenge?
We're going to be focusing on R&D of course, but also continuing our efforts on information technologies, an initiative that already well underway. Our Information Systems department not only oversees the operation of our networks, and purchased applications, but it is also developing tools to enhance the efficiency of our processes, spanning design, production and testing. We plan to capitalize on this specific capability, because it is crucial for the success of our two largest current aircraft programs, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and the Airbus A350.