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RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam announced today that Aurora Flight Sciences, a pioneer in unmanned aircraft and autonomous flight, will invest more than $13.75 million to expand its operation in the City of Manassas. The company, which was acquired by The Boeing Company in 2017 and is headquartered in Manassas, plans to build a robotics and integration facility that will consist of a manufacturing unit, a research and development lab, a hangar, and office space. The project will create 135 new jobs.
“In Virginia we’re proud of our leading position in the aerospace industry, and that is only strengthened by companies like Aurora Flight Sciences that continue to grow and thrive in our Commonwealth,” said Governor Northam. “More than 275 aerospace firms call the Commonwealth home, thanks to our world-class workforce, competitive business climate, and technology infrastructure. Virginia is proud to partner with Aurora in this next phase of growth, and we thank them for choosing to expand in Manassas.”
Aurora Flight Sciences is a world-class innovator, developer, and manufacturer of advanced aerospace platforms and autonomous systems. Headquartered in Manassas, Virginia, Aurora operates production plants in Bridgeport, West Virginia and Columbus, Mississippi. Aurora has Research and Development Centers in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Dayton, Ohio, and Menlo Park, California, as well as a European office located in Luzern, Switzerland.
“Aurora Flight Sciences is a major employer in Manassas, and an important aerospace industry leader that calls the Commonwealth home,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Brian Ball. “Virginia’s leadership role in this sector dates back to 1917, and we are continuing the momentum in the 21st century. We look forward to watching Aurora’s continued growth in the Commonwealth.”
“Since choosing the Manassas Airport to locate our headquarters nearly 27 years ago, we have prided ourselves in bringing new technology to the region and becoming one of the largest employers in the City,” said Founder and CEO of Aurora Flight Sciences John Langford. “Now as part of The Boeing Company, we are able to continue our expansion in developing next-generation autonomous systems that will transform transportation.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Manassas to secure the project for Virginia. Former Governor Terry McAuliffe approved a $500,000 grant from the Commonwealth’s Opportunity Fund to assist Manassas with the project. The company will also be eligible to receive Sales and Use tax exemptions on manufacturing equipment, as well as a Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.
“Aurora is a vital part of the Manassas business community and exemplifies everything a locality wants from its corporate partners—steady growth, community engagement and great jobs—helping make us a regional employment center with one of the highest percentages of high wage jobs in professional and technical services in Virginia; especially for companies engaged in the fields of aerospace and advanced manufacturing,” said Mayor Harry J. Parrish II. “I am honored that Aurora has again chosen to expand its operations here.”
“Unmanned aircraft and autonomous flight are key components of an emerging tech market that is vital to Virginia’s economic future,” said Senator Jeremy McPike. “I’m proud to support Aurora Flight Sciences, based right here at Manassas airport, on their continued expansion in the aerospace industry.”
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