The parent company of Chantilly-based Fairchild Industries Inc. is moving to the Washington area as part of an extensive consolidation and restructuring, and it is changing its name -- to the Fairchild Corp.
"Only a handful" of employees from the various corporate offices of Cleveland-based Banner Industries Inc. will make the move to Chantilly, according to Deborah Tucker, corporate-communications vice president. Most of the firm's operating entities will stay where they are.
But the relocation strikes a positive note in a generally flat local economy. The firm will be among the largest 15 or so public companies headquartered here, based on revenue, and future staffing expansions could benefit the local work force.
The move will be formalized at a stockholders meeting here Nov. 15. Stockholders will vote then on the name change, which Banner management is proposing in recognition of the fact that Fairchild's operations now form the firm's base. Another reason is to avoid confusion with Banner Aerospace Inc., which Banner spun off in July, retaining a 47 percent share.
Banner, a diverse conglomerate that bought Fairchild in 1989 and immediately sold off a large chunk of its defense-contracting business to a French firm, now is hoping to sell others of what it calls its "non-core" businesses. One of those, a waste-water treatment operation in Waukesha, Wis., called Envirex Inc., will be sold to a British firm for $75 million, Banner said Wednesday. Still on the block are Fairchild's satellite-modem manufacturer, an aircraft-tire distributor and several parcels of real estate.
The remaining core of Banner Industries is Fairchild's aerospace-fastener division, a $310 million operation by revenue; a manufacturer of tooling and electronics for the plastic-injection molding industry, with annual revenue of $139 million; and a small telecommunications arm. Banner also holds a 40 percent stake in Brookfield, Wis.-based Rexnord Inc., which makes mechanical power transmissions.
Because Banner Aerospace was spun off after the close of the company's 1990 fiscal year June 30, its $703 million in revenue and $1.5 million profit will make it among the area's largest companies when 1990 sales are compared.
The newly arrived executives will work in Fairchild's current office building near Dulles International Airport (the highly visible Fairchild office along Interstate 270 in Maryland belongs to the portions bought by the French firm). Jeffrey J. Steiner, chairman and chief executive, will continue to operate primarily from New York, and Emanuel Fthenakis, president and chief operating officer, who had headed the old Fairchild, will run the day-to-day operations here.