Berlin Security Conference 2017: Lockheed Martin targets key German opportunities

29 November 2017
An image of the F-35 in Luftwaffe markings was displayed at the Berlin Security Conference, highlighting one of the three key German requirements being pursued by Lockheed Martin. Source: Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin has its sights set on Germany as it targets three key upcoming requirements for the Bundeswehr.

Promoting its presence at the Berlin Security Conference (BSC) on 29 November, Lockheed Martin showcased its offerings for three programmes for the German Air Force (Luftwaffe) and Navy (Deutsche Marine), with the CH-53K King Stallion heavy lift helicopter; the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF); and the MH-60R anti-surface warfare (ASW and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) helicopter, each being promoted at the event.

Speaking to Jane’s ahead of the BSC, Frank Crisafulli, business development lead for heavy-lift helicopters at Sikorsky, spelled out the latest developments in Lockheed Martin’s bid to the Luftwaffe for its Schweren Transporthubschrauber (STH) requirement.

The Luftwaffe is looking to procure up to 41 new heavy-lift helicopters to replace its ageing VFW-Sikorsky CH-53G-series platforms, with deliveries currently slated to begin in 2022. Crisafulli said that for the STH requirement, which will see Lockheed Martin go up against Boeing and its CH-47F Chinook, the company is now waiting on the German government to hold an industry day to be followed by a request for proposals (RFP).

After these steps, a declaration from the German government as to its preferred solution is expected to be made. As part of its sales drive to Germany, Lockheed Martin recently announced that it planned to exhibit the CH-53K at the forthcoming ILA Berlin Airshow in April of next year.

Further to the Luftwaffe’s STH requirement, Lockheed Martin is also targeting the service’s stated desire to replace its Panavia Tornado force with a new fifth-generation platform. Speaking at the recent IQPC International Fighter conference in Berlin, service chief Lieutenant General Karl Muellner said that, while a shortlist of potential platforms had been drawn up, his “preferred choice” was the F-35.

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