A Dedicated Centre of Excellence

Thompson Aero

Thompson is firmly established as one of the leading suppliers of premium aircraft seating. With increasing market share and an evolving and expanding product portfolio selected by many of the world’s leading airlines, Thompson’s seating range is offerable across all Airbus and Boeing platforms. Highlights from 2017 included delivery to Delta Airlines of the new Vantage XL Suite on Thompson’s first Airbus A350 programme, the ‘all suite cabin’ with sliding privacy doors was an industry first, winning the highly acclaimed Crystal Cabin Award at the Hamburg Aircraft Interiors Expo Hamburg. The same year our launch customer for the Boeing B787, Qantas, took delivery of their first Dreamliner with their fully customised version of the Vantage XL. Other customer deliveries during 2017 included China Eastern, TAP Portugal and Philippine Airlines.

Today Thompson is one of Northern Ireland’s most successful and fastest growing businesses employing over 1000 staff. The current industrial footprint covers 20,000 m2 across 4 sites located in the Portadown and Banbridge areas and includes full design, engineering, manufacturing and R&D capabilities.

In December 2016 Thompson was acquired by AVIC (Aviation Industry Corporation of China), one of the world’s largest and leading aerospace companies. With Thompson’s planned future growth and expansion plans being backed and endorsed by AVIC, together with the ability to offer a broader range of cabin interior products from other companies within the AVIC group, the Thompson success story looks well set to continue.

Our Journey

Having identified the need for improved, more efficient aircraft seating solutions and following several years of research and development, the Vantage concept, a full flat horizontal bed was created to address these disadvantages.

Several airlines, including Swiss and Delta airlines, were quick to identify the benefits of the space saving Vantage concept, and in 2009 under a license agreement from Thompson the first of the Vantage line entered production.

In February 2011, to meet the increased demand, Thompson’s first production facility was secured at the Seagoe Industrial Park, Portadown, Northern Ireland, and the manufacture of the first Thompson Vantage seats began.

Early 2016 saw the delivery of the first Thompson seats to the Boeing final assembly line in Seattle as SWISS installed a fully customised version of the Thompson Vantage Business Class seat on their new B777s. This was followed in April, at the annual Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, with confirmation that the Thompson Vantage and Vantage XL products would now be selectable from the Airbus BFE Catalogues for the A330 and A320 family, with A350 and A380 platforms to follow.

Thompson also strengthened its position in the North American market with the announcement to supply Delta’s new A350 fleet with the new Thompson Vantage XL Suite. Based upon the Vantage XL platform the XL Suite will be the first business class cabin to feature a sliding door for every customer.

Quality & Approvals

EASA Part 21G UK.21G2638 EASA 21J APDOA
EASA.AP305 EASA Part 145 UK.145.01290
TCCA Part 145 814-05 FAA Part 145
BSI AS9100 Rev C FM540498


The Thompson seating range is available across all Airbus (A320F, A330, A350 and A380) and Boeing (B737, B757, B767, B777 and B787) platforms.