Too common? Not at all, Ducommun. The company designs and makes aerostructures and electromechanical components for commercial and military aircraft, as well as for missile and space programs. Ducommun AeroStructures (DAS) engineers and manufactures structures and assemblies, such as aircraft wing spoilers and helicopter blades using aluminum, composites, and titanium. Ducommun LaBarge Technologies (DLT) makes electromechanical components, such as switch assemblies, actuators, keyboard panels, and avionics racks. Its Miltec subsidiary designs missile and aerospace systems. Products for military and space applications accounted for 54% of 2013 sales. Boeing accounted for 18% of 2013 revenues; Raytheon, 10%.
The company has facilities in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, Ducommun also operates plants in Mexico and Thailand.
DAS' production techniques include stretch-forming (the creation of large structural shapes from aluminum sheet metal extrusions) and hot-forming (metal working at high temperature) and computer-controlled machining. The segment also provides chemical milling (the removal of material to reduce weight) services. Commercial aerospace account for 57% of DAS' sales while military and space applications represent the rest.
Besides making electronic, electromechanical, and interconnect systems and components, DLT offers services that include design, integration, and testing for advanced weapons and missile defense systems. Military and space applications account for 58% of the segment's sales while commercial aerospace, natural resources, industrial, medical, and other markets represent the rest.
Sales and Marketing
The company serves the aerospace, defense, industrial, natural resources and medical industries. The aerospace and defense markets represented 83% of Ducommun's revenues in 2013.
Ducommun saw several years of revenue growth in revenue (until 2012) followed by marginal 1% decline in 2013. The decline in 2013 was due to a drop in the Ducommun LaBarge Technologies sales, reflecting a 23% decrease in non-aerospace and defense revenues, partially offset by a 4.5% increase in commercial aerospace sales in the Ducommun AeroStructures segment.
After a net loss of more than $47 million in 2011 as the result in part of expenses related to its acquisition activity and greater interest demands. It bounced back to a $16 million profit due to absence of goodwill and impairment expenses. In 2013 Ducommun's net income dropped by 43% to $9 million due to forward loss provision and asset impairment expenses.
Operating cash flow has followed net income trend. In 2013 operating cash flow decreased by some $2 million due to lower net income, partially offset by abetter working capital management (primarily in inventory and accounts receivable).
The company focuses on further expansion within the commercial airplane market, and growing on growing its non-A&D business as expeditiously as possible. Acquisitions and joint venture partnerships are major elements of Ducommun's strategy.
In 2014 Ducommun signed a long-term agreement with AgustaWestland Philadelphia Corporation to continue producing specialized, complex wiring harnesses for the AW139 multi-mission helicopter. The three-year agreement extends Ducommun’s support of the program at its Joplin, Missouri operation through 2016. The company has also been awarded several contracts by Spirit AeroSystems to produce structural assemblies for the Boeing 737 MAX commercial jetliner
DLT was created in 2011 when the company's Technologies segment was merged with newly acquired LaBarge, a St. Louis-based electronics component manufacturer.
Considered the oldest company in California with a founding date of 1849, Ducommun is dedicated to new technologies for the aerospace industry. It was the first to make all-composite rotor blades for Sikorsky S-61 helicopters; traditional blades were made of a mixture of metal and composite materials.