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31 Mar 16. FIDAE 2016: Airbus Helicopters adapting to Latin American economic troubles. Airbus Helicopters is having to adapt aspects of its business in Latin America as the economic downturn continues to affect both the military and commercial aspects of the company’s dealings in the region.
Speaking at the FIDAE Airshow on 31 March, head of the Latin American region Mesrob Karalekian said that the economic troubles that are largely being driven by a slump in the global oil price have caused the company to restructure at least one of its key efforts in the region, though in some areas the prospects are somewhat more positive.
As noted by Karalekian, deliveries of military and commercial platforms across the region have fallen by approximately 70% since 2013. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
31 Mar 16. L-3 fails to dismiss shareholder lawsuit over accounting. A federal judge rejected L-3 Communications Holdings Inc’s bid to dismiss a lawsuit by shareholders seeking to recoup losses stemming from the defense contractor’s alleged accounting fraud in its aerospace systems business.
In a Wednesday night decision, U.S. District Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan said shareholders led by two Michigan pension plans can pursue claims that L-3 hid improprieties tied to a contract to service U.S. Army C-12 airplanes, including those raised by an internal management-level whistleblower.
The judge also dismissed related claims against Chief Executive Michael Strianese and Chief Financial Officer Ralph D’Ambrosio, finding a lack of evidence that they acted recklessly or intended to defraud.
L-3 shares slid 12.3 percent on July 31, 2014, wiping out roughly $1.3bn of market value, after the New York-based company said it would restate two years of results, take a charge against earnings, and fire four people over problems with the C-12 contract, including cost overruns and inflated sales.
Caproni said the firings, including of the aerospace systems unit’s CFO, for what Strianese called “misconduct” gave rise to a “strong inference” that L-3 intended to defraud shareholders. She also said L-3’s alleged misstatements could be material.
The judge did not rule on the merits of the lawsuit, which seeks class-action status.
Neither L-3 nor lawyers for the company and its executives, immediately responded on Thursday to requests for comment.
The plaintiffs were led by the City of Pontiac General Employees’ Retirement System, Local 1205 Pension Plan, and the City of Taylor Police and Fire Retirement System.
David Rosenfeld, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said his clients are pleased that the case against L-3 can go forward.
The cases in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, have different named plaintiffs. They are Patel v. L-3 Communications Holdings Inc et al, No. 14-06038; Nguyen v. L-3 Communications Holdings Inc et al, No. 14-06182; and Valentino v. L-3 Communications Holdings Inc et al, No. 14-06939. (Source: Reuters)
31 Mar 16. VPG Signs Definitive Agreement To Acquire Pacific Instruments. Vishay Precision Group, Inc. (VPG), a leading producer of precision sensors and systems, today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Pacific Instruments of Concord, California, a privately held company. The acquisition is expected to close promptly, subject to the satisfaction of customary conditions.
Pacific Instruments is a designer and manufacturer of high‐performance data acquisition systems. They have extensive experience integrating large, high performance data acquisition and control systems, selling primarily to the aerospace, commercial aviation and defense markets, mainly in the U.S. The company provides installation, facility integra