Airbus Management Appointment

Airbus has appointed Gerhard Puttfarcken as Chairman of the Board of Management and General Manager of its German branch, Airbus Deutschland GmbH, effective 1st January 2003. He will replace Hans-Joachim Gante, who will become Managing Director of the German Aerospace Industries Association BDLI.

Gerhard Puttfarcken (56) is currently Airbus’ Senior Vice President Single-Aisle Programme, and will be replaced in this role by Mario Heinen (46), who is currently Vice President of the Airbus Delivery Centre.

Born at Celle in November 1946, Gerhard Puttfarcken completed his degree in business management in Cologne. In 1972 he began as a systems analyst in the data-processing section of Krupp. In 1976, Puttfarcken joined the former Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm GmbH (MBB) in Hamburg, taking on various management positions in the area of data-processing, the final one being Head of Information Processing. Another important stage in his career was head of Material Management and Purchasing.

From 1994 to 1999, Mr Puttfarcken was Director of the Hamburg plant, the largest Airbus facility in Germany, He was then appointed Programme Manager for the A380 at the former German Airbus partner. Since January 2001, he was Airbus’ Single-Aisle Programme Manager. Gerhard Puttfarcken is married, and has two children. His interests include music, soccer, gymnastics and, above all, spending time with his family.

Mario Heinen, a citizen of Luxembourg, was born in Belgium in 1956. He won his Aeronautical Engineering degree from the University of Stuttgart in 1983, following this with research at the University’s Institute for Aerodynamics. He joined Lufthansa as a Maintenance Engineer in 1985, rising to become General Manager Aircraft Maintenance,. At the beginning of 2000, Mr Heinen became Vice President of the Airbus Delivery Centre, with responsibility for all Airbus deliveries. He is married with three children, and his interests include skiing, hiking, surfing and classical music.


Airbus is a leading aircraft manufacturer with the most modern and extensive product range on the market. The globally operating company with headquarters in Toulouse has design and manufacturing facilities in France, Germany, the UK and Spain, as well as subsidiaries in the USA, China and Japan. Airbus is an EADS joint company with BAE SYSTEMS.