EADS agrees to keep German plants for 3 yrs -paper

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - EADS EAD.PA has agreed to keep for three years a majority stake in three German plants it had planned to sell, German newspaper Financial Times Deutschland reported, citing industry sources.

The company also agreed with labour representatives that no jobs would be cut at the plants in Varel, Nordenham and Augsburg until the end of 2013.

EADS was not immediately available for comment.

EADS last year agreed to sell the factories to a consortium led by German aerospace group OHB OHBG.DE, but the talks collapsed earlier this year on difficulties to finance the deal.

The company has bundled the German plants into a new company, Aerotec, which will be launched on Jan. 1.

The management of EADS and unit Airbus as well as the supervisory board are expected to sign off on the deal between the plants and their labour representatives this week, under which EADS would retain a majority stake until 2011, FT Deutschland said.

Airbus had planned to cut 10,000 jobs and sell all or part of six factories as part of its “Power 8” restructuring plan aimed at cutting costs in the wake of damaging delays to its aircraft production timetable.

Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Mike Nesbit