Paris U.S. aircraft maker Boeing Co. said Tuesday it has named Yves Galland as vice president of international relations and president of its new French subsidiary, part of a broad move to step up the company's presence in Europe.
Galland, 62, has been chairman of the subsidiary EuropAssistance since February 2000.
Speaking at a news conference in Paris, Galland said his mission was to increase Boeing's market share in France, while exploring possible partnerships between French industrialists and Boeing.
Boeing has already named representatives in Britain, Spain, Italy, Germany, Scandinavia, Ireland, Austria, Switzerland, Russia and Turkey, and will shortly appoint others in smaller European countries.
Galland indicated that Boeing would be amenable to explore cooperation with helicopter maker Eurocopter, a unit of European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co.
Galland indicated that Boeing is also willing to develop cooperation with French companies, through mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, technical cooperation and the purchase of minority interests.
Separately, Italy's national carrier Alitalia said Tuesday it had obtained $544 million in financing to buy six Boeing 777s -- a centerpiece of the renewal of the airline's fleet.
The financing comes from the U.S. Export-Import Bank and Barclays PLC, one of Britain's largest banks, Alitalia said in a statement. The deal was signed Monday in New York.