Changing Circumstances

Asked Tuesday at the press conference announcing EADS North America would compete for the KC-X tanker contract why he thinks the Airbus A330 can win the contest after former partner Northrop Grumman (see Opting Out) concluded the competition favors a smaller airplane, EADS North America chairman Ralph Crosby said they have differing views on whether the KC-45 can prevail. Crosby added that when the two created their partnership more than five years ago, EADS North America wasn’t up to a bid as solo prime, but now it is. He also said his team will “create tens of thousands of jobs” if it wins the program, by making good on an earlier promise to also produce A330 commercial freighters in the US, in the Gulf Coast region.