Thursday, June 20, 2024
Roadfour opens branch at Ostend-Bruges International Airport

Roadfour opens branch at Ostend-Bruges International Airport

Roadfour NV, the Belgian startup developing the SEAGLE, the new generation amphibious forest firefighting aircraft, has established a branch at the Ostend-Bruges Airport North Sea Aviation Centre (NSAC) with the branch name: “Roadfour Oostende”.

Roadfour NV is investigating the possibilities for the implantation of the Final Assembly Line (FAL) for the SEAGLE, the new European firefighting aircraft. The establishment of a branch in Ostend is a necessity to facilitate discussions with the various stakeholders in Flanders says Luc Stultjens, Roadfour ‘s Community Manager Benelux.

Ostend is currently one of the possible European locations for the implantation of the FAL. This location will eventually employ about 450 direct and 450 indirect full-time employees.

Roadfour’s choice to open a branch in Ostend is welcomed by Filip Roelandt, CEO of the Economisch Huis Oostende. Ostend airport is therefore the ideal place to host such an ambitious project as the ‘SEAGLE’. An airport that matches the company’s needs in terms of size, a strong airport community, the support from all levels of government, the easy accessibility and the high level of education of the region are important assets to be able to offer Roadfour a great future here, according to Filip Roelandt.

Read more: Ostend-Bruges Airport futureproofs cargo operations with Nallian-powered Cargo Cloud

As a Belgian startup, we wish to explore our own country’s assets as widely as possible. This allows us to make a strictly objective decision for the final implantation of our FAL. This decision will have a long-term impact on an entire ecosystem. To prepare this decision, close cooperation with local stakeholders is a must. The choice to open our “Roadfour Ostend” branch for this purpose is fully in line with our strategy Gaëtan Du Four, CEO and co-founder, said.

It is Roadfour’s vision to reduce the environmental footprint of current and future forest fires to protect our future generations. The mission is therefore to develop unique and innovative products for aerial firefighting.

The 7 Gigaton annual and global CO2 emissions caused by mega forest fires are the cause of loss of human life, loss of fauna and flora, of entire habitats. The economic impact is estimated at more than 100 Billion Euros a year. Just think of the loss of homes, businesses, infrastructure and agriculture with accompanying rising air pollution.

Read more: Ostend-Bruges Airport renews important environmental management certificate

Our SEAGLE amphibious forest firefighting aircraft in the heaviest category, use state-of-the-art technologies in all areas. The most innovative raw materials, digital products and processes through to a climate-neutral production environment are applied. This makes the SEAGLE the most advanced and mission-efficient aircraft on the market.

The availability of the European RescEU budget of 800MIO€ for the procurement of forest firefighting equipment, including the purchase of forest firefighting aircraft, should enable European sovereignty in this domain. More than that, by investing these budgets in Europe itself, we encourage comprehensive European knowledge building and invest in the value

chain and employment. In addition to direct and indirect employment at the FAL site (total 900 FTEs), there is employment of 5,000 FTEs in the European value chain.

The support of our respective governments, under this European project, is definitely needed. The economic created return in the Belgian and European value chain, over the period 2023 – 2050, is more than 14B€. It will put Belgium and East Flanders even better on the global industrial map of the aircraft industry.

Picture of Edward Hardy

Edward Hardy

Having become a journalist after university, Edward Hardy has been a reporter and editor at some of the world's leading publications and news sites. In 2022, he became Air Cargo Week's Editor. Got news to share? Contact me on


Stay informed. Stay ahead. To get the latest air cargo news and industry trends delivered directly to your inbox, sign up now!

related articles

LATAM Marks First Year of Miami – São José dos Campos Cargo Route with 1.6K Tons Transported

time:matters opens Courier Terminal at Shanghai Pudong Airport for handling courier and express air freight shipments

Swedavia strengthens its collaboration with Médecins Sans Frontières