Rheinmetall to buy assets of drone firm EMT

by Marc Selinger

Rheinmetall Group has agreed to acquire the assets of EMT, whose products include the newly developed Luna Next Generation (NG) reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicle. (EMT)

German conglomerate Rheinmetall Group plans to expand its defence technology offering by acquiring the operating activities, personnel, and real estate of EMT, a financially struggling Bavarian business that makes unmanned aerial vehicles for reconnaissance missions, Rheinmetall announced on 23 November.

“The transaction reflects Rheinmetall's strategy of expanding its portfolio of systems and equipment to meet the complete needs of its military customers,” Rheinmetall said. “At the same time, this approach ensures that important defence technology capabilities will be maintained in Germany.”

EMT's products include the newly developed Luna Next Generation (NG) UAV, which the German Bundeswehr is starting to use. The fixed-wing, catapult-launched Luna NG has more range and payload capacity than the original Luna, which the Bundeswehr has flown in operations since 2000.

After the acquisition closes in late December, Rheinmetall intends to fold EMT's activities into its Technical Publications subsidiary, which already maintains Germany's KZO target location UAV. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.


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Japan sets defence budget target of 2% of GDP

by Jon Grevatt

Japan aims to achieve defence spending worth 2% of GDP by 2027. Janes Defence Budgets analysis suggests that while this effort might prove overambitious, even a limited increase in the proportion of funding allocated to defence will result in strong growth in expenditure. (Janes Defence Budgets)

Japan's Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada has confirmed a government plan to strongly increase defence spending over the next few years to support the “drastic strengthening of [Japan's] defence capabilities”.

Hamada said in a Ministry of Defense (MoD) press conference that the plan had been endorsed by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, who, on 28 November, directed his government to increase defence spending to 2% of national GDP by 2027.

“Towards the drastic strengthening of our defence capabilities, [the] prime minister has said it is necessary to urgently strengthen [the defence budget] within five years,” Hamada said in comments published by the MoD.

He added, “I have been instructed to decide on measures to secure financial resources for defence expenditure and revenue in an integrated manner. In response to the prime minister's instruction, the MoD will accelerate co-ordination with the Ministry of Finance and others.”


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Czechoslovak Group buys ammo maker Fiocchi Munizioni

by Marc Selinger

Fiocchi makes ammunition for the .50 Browning Machine Gun. (Fiocchi)

Czech Republic-based conglomerate Czechoslovak Group (CSG) has expanded its foreign footprint by acquiring a 70% stake in Italian ammunition manufacturer Fiocchi Munizioni, the buyer announced on 25 November.

Petr Formánek, CSG's head of mergers and acquisitions, said the Fiocchi purchase is consistent with CSG's strategy of buying companies that are “oriented towards Western Europe and the US”. CSG chairman Michal Strnad said that Fiocchi enjoys a “solid presence” in NATO countries.

Fiocchi, which makes ammunition for handguns, machine guns, rifles, and shotguns, will become part of a new CSG division called CSG Ammo+. Fiocchi employs more than 1,300 people and expects to generate a consolidated revenue of over EUR380 million (USD393 million) in 2022. It has operations in the UK and the US in addition to Italy.

About a fifth of Fiocchi's production is for its defence and law-enforcement segment, a CSG spokesperson told Janes on 28 November. Fiocchi also serves the hunting and sports shooting markets.


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Update: First C-130J-30 for Indonesia produced

by Akhil Kadidal

The first of five C-130J-30s ordered by Indonesia conducts its first test flight on 27 October 2022. (Lockheed Martin)

The first of five Lockheed Martin C-130J-30s ordered for the Indonesian Air Force (TNI-AU) has conducted its first test flight, and the aircraft is being prepared for delivery in 2023.

Lockheed Martin told Janes that the first aircraft (serial number A-1339) is scheduled for delivery in the first quarter of 2023. The remaining four aircraft will be delivered through 2024, a Lockheed Martin spokesperson said. The company added that the first aircraft conducted its maiden test flight on 27 October.

Indonesia has been considering augmenting its existing C-130 fleet for several years. The Indonesian Ministry of Defense did not respond to Janes query for information about the contract details or the acquisition at the time of publication.

The company has since confirmed to Janes that the first aircraft are being sold to Indonesia as part of a Direct Commercial Sale (DCS). Janes assesses that the deal was likely signed in 2019.


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https://www.janes.com/defence-news/industry-headlines/latest/rheinmetall-to-buy-assets-of-drone-firm-emt

German conglomerate Rheinmetall Group plans to expand its defence technology offering by acquiring t...

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