Societe Provisoire des Aeroplanes Deperdussin
Societe Parisienne des Avions Deperdussin
Societe des Productions Armand Deperdussin
Societe Pour Aviation et ses Derivees
Silk merchant Armand Deperdussin (1867-1924) was associated from 1910 with a series of notable monoplanes. Built precursor in 1909 for show in a Paris store.
By 1914 monoplanes bearing Deperdussin name were used not only privately but by several military authorities. Designed by Louis Bechereau, these aircraft were especially noted for speed performances in 1912-1913, and in some instances for monocoque construction. Deperdussin, a great promoter, became involved in financial difficulties and in 1915 the company was declared bankrupt.
In 1913 Deperdussin was arrested for embezzlement and the company was taken over by Louis Bleriot and renamed Societe Pour I'Aviation et ses Derives in 1915, thus retaining these initials. Chief technician was at first Bechereau, later Andre Herbemont.
The Deperdussin name had links with several companies, including the British Deperdussin Company with which John Porte was connected. Initials SPAD were also ascribed to Societe Provisoire des Aeroplanes Deperdussin and Societe Parisienne des Avions Deperdussin, as well as Societe des Productions Armand Deperdussin.
Company became world famous for SPAD single-seat fighters and fast reconnaissance adaptations. More than 2,000 fighters built at Suresnes factory alone; great numbers under license in France and elsewhere. Classic tractor single-seat biplane flown late 1915 as SPAD V; developed into SPAD VII of 1916, thus establishing company's name in aviation history. Characteristic design feature was two-bay wing cellule with special form of bracing. Combination with Hispano-Suiza 8-cylinder vee engine was major factor in success. SPAD XII had a 37 mm engine-mounted gun. From May 1917 improved two machine-gun type XIII replaced VII. Large numbers ordered by U.S. SPAD XX of late 1918 was two-seat fighter to Herbemont design and precursor of new Bleriot-SPAD line of single-strut monocoque-fuselage biplane fighters, built after Bleriot took over SPAD company in 1921 SPAD became Bleriot-SPAD.