Embraer S.A. is a Brazilian aerospace conglomerate that produces commercial, military, executive and agricultural aircraft and provides aeronautical services. It was founded in 1969 in São José dos Campos, São Paulo, where its headquarters are located. The company is the third largest producer of civil aircraft, after Boeing and Airbus.
Seeking to develop a domestic aircraft industry, the Brazilian government under Getúlio Vargas' Estado Novo made several investments in the aerospace industry during the 1940s and 1950s. However, it was not until 1969, following the rise to power of a military junta in the 1964 Brazilian coup d'état, that Empresa Brasileira de Aeronáutica (Embraer) was created as a government-owned corporation. Its first president, Ozires Silva, was a government appointee, and the company initially only produced a turboprop passenger aircraft, the Embraer EMB 110 Bandeirante.
The Brazilian government contributed to Embraer's early growth by providing production contracts. The company sold solely to the domestic market until 1975.
While military aircraft made up the majority of Embraer's products during the 1970s and early 1980s, including the Embraer AT-26 Xavante and the Embraer EMB 312 Tucano, it debuted a regional airliner, the Embraer EMB 120 Brasilia, in 1985. Aimed at the export market, this plane was the first in a series of highly successful small and regional airliners.
Born from a Brazilian government plan, and having been state-run from the beginning, Embraer eventually started a privatisation process in 1992 alongside other state-run companies, such as Telebras and Vale. Privatisation was a key policy of the economically liberal PRN government of Itamar Franco, elected in the 1989 presidential election. Embraer was sold to private investors on December 7, 1994, which helped it avoid a looming bankruptcy. The Brazilian government retained interest through possession of golden shares, which allow it veto power. Embraer continued to win government contracts throughout the 2000s and 2010s.
In 2000, Embraer made simultaneous initial public offerings on the NYSE and BM&F Bovespa stock exchanges.