12 Dec 11. MBDA Inc., the wholly owned U.S. subsidiary of missile manufacturer MBDA, has purchased Northrop Grumman Corporation’s (NYSE: NOC) Viper Strike munitions business, located in Huntsville, AL. Terms of the agreement are not being disclosed. The Viper Strike purchase is MBDA Inc.’s first acquisition in the U.S. and is part of the company’s growth strategy. That strategy is based on a combination of acquisitions, organic growth, and partnerships with other U.S. prime contractors. The move will help position MBDA as a leading precision munitions firm in the U.S. and gives the company a stronger capability in the growing market to create and produce new weapons for unmanned aerial systems (UASs). The Viper Strike Business Unit facilities, located in the City of Huntsville and on the US Army’s Redstone Arsenal, will allow MBDA to design, build, and assemble complete precision-guided weapons in one location, as well as bring in new business to the MBDA Huntsville facilities. MBDA Inc. now owns two design, development, and manufacturing locations: the Huntsville, AL Viper Strike operating unit, and its original Westlake Village, CA operating unit. Viper Strike is a low-collateral damage, precision guided weapon designed for both manned and unmanned aircraft. This 44-pound, covert glide weapon allows U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, Special Forces, and U.S. Marine Corps aircraft to precisely engage targets in urban and complex terrain environments. It combines a GPS Inertial Navigation System and a Semi-Active Laser seeker to provide maximum operational flexibility. This transaction has received all necessary US government regulatory approvals.
16 Dec 11. Moog Inc. (NYSE: MOG.A) (NYSE: MOG.B) has acquired Bradford Engineering B.V. The purchase price is approximately EUR 10m in cash. Bradford, founded in 1983, is a European developer and manufacturer of satellite equipment including satellite attitude and orbit control subsystems, propulsion and thermal subsystems and components. (Source: Yahoo!/Marketwire)
17 Dec 11. Cohort on the block? Has the huge cut in the MoD consultants budget hit Cohort hard? After the 2010 profit warning the business has stabilised but little growth is being seen apart from one large Astute contract at SCS worth £6m. These sources suggest that Cohort is looking to sell to a larger consultancy, Serco or Babcock may be looking. The strong rise in Cohort’s shares to 100p last week shows that something is happening. Nick Prest is also struggling with his Shephard business which announced losses of circa £600k this year. That business is also in a sector which will be hard hit by MoD spending. At the Bisley event this year a senior speaker was heard to say that he was not used to addressing such small audiences! Shephard will be a hard one to sell, particularly with 7 publications struggling to pay their way. A sign of the times was when he asked if he could have a free sub to BATTLESPACE rather than pay, we politely declined his request!
16 Dec 11. General Dynamics (NYSE: GD) announced that the U.S. Department of Justice has granted early termination of the waiting period required by the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements Act in connection with its $5.52-per-share cash tender offer to purchase the outstanding shares of common stock of Force Protection, Inc. (NASDAQ: FRPT). As previously announced, General Dynamics and Force Protection agreed to the terms of the acquisition on November 7 following the approval by the board of directors of each company. Termination of the waiting period satisfies one of the conditions of the tender offer necessary for the acquisition to proceed. Other closing conditions remain to be satisfied, including the requirement that a minimum number of Force Protection shares are tendered in the offer as described in the Offer to Purchase. The complete Offer to Purchase, as amended, has been filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and can be v