ICON Aircraft announced that Thomas Wieners has joined the company as its Vice President of Manufacturing. He began his career at Audi AG, and then spent five years at DaimlerChrysler AG in various quality and manufacturing management roles. Most recently, he worked at Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP) for eight years in operations roles that culminated with his overseeing the construction and operation of a 1,300-employee, $100M CAD greenfield production facility in Queretaro, Mexico.
“This is a unique opportunity to join a new company that is making a new product in a new factory,” said Wieners. “In the manufacturing world, which is dominated by established players, the chance to participate in so many firsts is very rare, and I am very excited to be joining the ICON team at this stage. And that team is a big part of the draw, with exceptional passion, talent, and dedication. I’m looking forward to working with the team to transition ICON to high-quality rate production in order to deliver aircraft to our enthusiastic customers and establish ICON as a distinguished manufacturer of world-class aircraft.”
Wieners will play a critical role as ICON transitions its development focus to manufacturing and production operations. The company’s new facility in Vacaville, CA, continues to grow and will develop over the coming years to support the evolution of the A5 and any other future products. He will work to increase production efficiencies, optimize the supply chain, and incorporate design-for-manufacturability revisions.
“VP of Manufacturing is an essential role at this juncture in ICON’s history, and Thomas is an outstanding fit for the position,” said ICON CEO and Founder Kirk Hawkins. “As we build out Vacaville with an eye toward delivering the more than 1500-aircraft backlog, Thomas’ ability to continually move the company toward timely deliveries of high-quality product profitably manufactured and at scale will be instrumental to ICON’s success. He has extensive relevant experience in the form of the construction and operation of BRP’s Queretaro facility and is also well-versed in composite manufacturing and supply chain development. Thomas is a talented and aggressive star performer with an exceptional manufacturing operations background–he’ll fit in well at ICON. We’re excited to have him on the team.”
ICON delivered its first customer aircraft in July 2015 at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh and will complete its first aircraft at the Vacaville facility later this year. Full-scale production at the facility will occur next year.