10 Nov 14. Optex Systems acquires Applied Optics Center of L-3 Communications. Optical assemblies company Optex Systems Holdings (Richardson, TX) completed the acquisition of Applied Optics Center (AOC) Division of Warrior Systems Sector with the Electronics Systems Business Segment of L-3 Communications Corporation (Dallas, TX). Optex manufactures optical sighting systems and assemblies.
“Optex Systems is pleased to join forces with the AOC Team and the products and skills that they bring to the new organization. Optex Systems and AOC have been associated on a supply basis for over 20 years and to now have shared synergy in optical coatings and sighting systems is extremely exciting,” said Danny Schoening, Optex CEO. “Serving many of the same customers, the synergies of the two companies provide additional competitive opportunities not served as separate entities.”
“AOC is an excellent fit with Optex with our similar customer base in the defense business. The speed and agility that Optex Systems brings to our combined organization will help us serve our existing customers more efficiently and align our efforts for growth. This will also allow a seamless transition from L-3 Communications as an internal customer to L-3 Communications as an external customer,” said Billy Bates, Optex – AOC general manager.
Merrick Okamoto, Optex’s chairman added, “Our corporate focus continues to be on merger and acquisition opportunities to take advantage of our underutilized capacity and low cost manufacturing during this cycle of lower defense spending. We are excited this acquisition will provide new growth opportunities and a new Commercial Optical Coating vertical which will reduce our dependence on defense related contracts.”
Optex products are installed on various types of U.S. military land vehicles, such as the Abrams and Bradley fighting vehicles, Light Armored and Armored Security Vehicles, and have been selected for installation on the Stryker family of vehicles. Optex also manufactures and delivers numerous periscope configurations, rifle and surveillance sights, and night vision optical assemblies. Applied Optics Center, the largest manufacturer of laser protection filters and related products for the US Army, is a designer and manufacturer of precision optical assemblies with extensive thin-film coating expertise. (Source: Open Source Information Report)
08 Nov 14. Cinven Axes Plan To Sell Avio Space Stake. UK fund Cinven has killed plans to sell its control of Italy-based firm Avio Space, a key player in the fast-evolving European space sector, ending months of speculation about the firm returning to Italian control. Cinven had nurtured plans to sell its controlling stake in Avio Space in 2013, with Italy’s state-controlled Finmeccanica seen as the likely buyer, while Safran and Airbus also made offers. But following the success of the firm’s Vega launcher for small satellites, Cinven has made a U-turn. Defense News has learned that Cinven has opted to run the business, following a decision reached over the last few months. The decision makes the fund a protagonist in moves to keep Europe’s space launch sector viable as US private entrepreneurs such as Elon Musk show they can launch satellites more cheaply. It also means Italy must rely on Cinven to keep Italian industry in the game. After Italy’s Fiat sold Avio in 2003 to US fund Carlyle, Cinven bought it in 2006 before selling the firm’s aerospace activity to General Electric last year. But it held onto its 86 percent stake in Avio’s space activity. Finmeccanica holds the remaining 14 percent and reportedly had an option of buying Cinven’s stake. The Italian government was expected to decide this summer what to do with Avio, which Rome considers a strategic firm. But no decision came as a new government focused on budget cuts in Italy and new Finmeccanica CEO Mauro Moretti began planning a restructuring of the group. Meanwhile, a brace of contracts this year apparent