Headquartered in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, Thales Group is the 11th largest defense contractor in the world, with 60% of its total sales being for military purposes. The aerospace branch Thales Avionics manages more than 40% of the Earth's airspace with its air traffic control centers, and is the premier provider of flight avionics-being Number 1 in Europe, and Number 3 globally. Founded in 2000, Thales has since established itself as a major influencer in the European aerospace market-being the primary manager of avionics equipment for the French Air Force, being awarded a 10-year fixed-price contract for supplying the Rafale fighter jet, and winning the maintenance contract for all of the Airbus NH90 helicopters flying globally.
Thales' portfolio of flight avionics systems include:
- Commercial avionics: Thales equips all major aircraft suppliers-Airbus, ATR, Boeing, Bombardier, Gulfstream, and Sukhoi-with its TopDeck Avionics Suite. Thales notably contributes to the Airbus A350 XWB, SESAR (Europe), and NextGen (US) development programs.
- Military avionics: Thales supplies cockpit avionics systems to Dassault's Rafale fighter jet, Airbus' A400M four-engine turboprop military transport plane, and Embraer's KC-390.
- Helicopter avionics: Thales equips the Sikorsky S76-D rotorcraft with the TopDeck cockpit avionics system-making Thales the first European rotorcraft cockpit producer to be on board a US-made civilian aircraft.
As of 2013, Thales has sales exceeding US$19 billion, and boasts an order book valued at US$39.49 billion.