• China appoints new defence minister

    Wei Fenghe will assume the position of China’s new defence minister, replacing Chang Wanquan in the role. A general in the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), Wei served as the deputy chief of staff in the PLA as well as commander of the Second Artillery Corps, which is the official

  • Dassault begins joint AI development with Thales

    A study that will see Dassault Aviation and Thales develop artificial intelligence (AI) technology for future combat aircraft has kicked off under the remit of the French defence procurement agency (DGA). The three-year Man-Machine-Teaming advanced study programme (PEA MMT) was officially launched

  • CACI offers competing bid for government IT supplier CSRA

    CACI International has offered to purchase CSRA at USD44 per share, an increase on the USD40.75 offered by General Dynamics in February to acquire the IT solutions provider. CACI’s proposal includes a cash element of USD15 per share, and a stock component at a fixed exchange ratio of 0.184

  • Australian, French firms set up naval engineering joint venture

    Australian firm Memko, a supplier of defence sustainment and support services, has signed an agreement with French engineering company Ingeliance Technologies to form a joint venture (JV) in Australia. Memko said on 15 March that the memorandum of understanding (MOU) will see the establishment of a

  • KBR to design Australian submarine construction yard

    Naval Group Australia is to partner with US engineering services group KBR to support the design of the construction yard for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN’s) next-generation submarines, the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) announced on 19 March. The DoD said the design of the

  • L-3 subsidiary wins counter-IED deal in Australia

    L-3 Micreo, a Brisbane-based subsidiary of L-3 Technologies, has received a contract from the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) to produce counter-improvised explosive devices (C-IEDs) for the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF). The DoD said on 17 March that the deal is valued

  • Boeing announces investment in UAV radar supplier

    Boeing revealed a new investment in Fortem Technologies – a Utah company which develops radar systems for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) – on 15 March. The investment, won by the company as part of a funding round which generated a total of USD15 million from companies including

  • Cobham completes sale of business units to Viavi

    British defence communications and aviation specialist Cobham announced the completion of its divestment of two business units on 16 March. The USD455 million transaction sees its AvComm and Wireless test and measurement businesses sold to US-based Viavi Solutions Inc, a supplier of network test and

  • TransDigm purchases Esterline elastomers unit

    US aerospace component manufacturing group TransDigm has finalised its acquisition of Esterline’s Kirkhill Elastomers business, the company announced on 15 March. As well as producing silicone seals used in commercial and military aircraft, Kirkhill, based in California, supplies products

  • US Army awards Lockheed Martin USD3.5 billion readiness contract

    Key Points The company will track 100% of LVC training components and systems Maintainers will use mobile devices to manage the inventory Lockheed Martin announced it was awarded a seven-year USD3.5 billion contract to support US Army readiness and training at more than 300 locations worldwide.

  • South Korea invests in guided weapons centre

    South Korea’s Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has announced plans to develop a research centre to assess the quality of guided weapon systems. DAPA said in a press release on 15 March that the new facility – in the central metropolis of Daejeon – would be

  • UK industry bids to secure deals in Indonesia

    Indonesia and the United Kingdom have held a joint conference in Jakarta to promote defence industrial collaboration, the Indonesian Ministry of Defence (MoD) said on 15 March. The MoD said the conference followed a UK defence industry trade mission to Indonesia, in which representatives from

  • Airbus speaks out on GKN takeover bid

    Airbus has warned that it “would be practically impossible” to give new business to GKN if the UK engineering group is acquired by turn-around specialist Melrose Industries. Tom Williams, chief operating officer of Airbus Commercial Aircraft, said in a statement on 15 March, “The

  • Barzan Holdings leads charge in Qatari industrialisation

    Qatar officially launched defence company Barzan Holdings at the Doha International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (DIMDEX) on 12 March, with the firm launching several joint ventures by the closing of the show on 14 March. The company is owned by the Qatari Ministry of Defence (MoD)

  • Hanwha aims high with Industry 4.0

    Key Points South Korean group Hanwha is expanding investment in Industry 4.0 The strategy is geared towards modernising manufacturing and defence products Hanwha Systems, a subsidiary of South Korea’s Hanwha Group, launched a project with a local research and development (R&D) agency in

  • India set for another defence IPO

    The Indian government is set to launch another initial public offering (IPO) in a defence public sector undertaking (DPSU). Shares in defence metals manufacturer Mishra Dhatu Nigam Limited (Midhani) will be newly issued for three days from 21 March, the company has announced. The IPO is the latest

  • Sikorsky signs Black Hawk agreement with Romaero

    Lockheed Martin subsidiary Sikorsky has signed an agreement with Romanian state-controlled aerospace organisation Romaero relating to the in-country completion and customisation of Black Hawk multirole helicopters. The memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed at the Romanian Ministry of Economy

  • UK cuts single source profit rate for third consecutive year

    The United Kingdom has reduced the baseline profit rate for sole-source contracts for the third year running. The rate – applicable from 1 April 2018 – has been cut by 9% to 6.81% from 7.46% during the prior financial year. The new rate, which followed a cut from 8.95% that was

  • Trump blocks Qualcomm takeover

    US President Donald Trump signed an executive order on 12 March blocking the takeover of US chipmaker Qualcomm by Singapore-based Broadcom. Qualcomm had first received a hostile bid for the company from Broadcom in November 2017, with a final offer valued at USD117 billion. The acquisition would

  • Japan pays a premium for locally built F-35s

    Key Points F-35s assembled in Japan cost about USD33 million more than imported types Japan could look to improve costs efficiencies through expanded local involvement The cost of locally building Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft for the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) is

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