21 Feb 19. Thales signs a definitive agreement to sell its General Purpose Hardware Security Module business to Entrust Datacard. Thales (Euronext Paris: HO) announces today the signing of a definitive agreement with Entrust Datacard, a leading provider of trusted identity and secure issuance technology solutions, for the divestment of its General Purpose Hardware Security Module (GP HSM) business, which has been operating as a separate stand-alone business within Thales since January 2019 under the brand “nCipher Security”.
This transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2019. It addresses commitments made by Thales to several competition authorities to divest this business to a suitable purchaser in order to ensure a strongly competitive market for GP HSM solutions and to finalize the acquisition of Gemalto. The transaction is subject to the successful completion of the acquisition of Gemalto by Thales, the approval of Entrust as a suitable purchaser by the European Commission, US Department of Justice, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, and New Zealand Commerce Commission, and the satisfaction of customary closing conditions.
This transaction will enable nCipher Security — with more than €100m in revenues in 2018 and over 300 employees — to continue to deliver innovative solutions and services and strengthen its market leadership.
With customers in more than 150 countries, Entrust Datacard has been offering identity-based, enterprise-grade security solutions for 50 years. It has more than 2,200 employees in 34 locations worldwide.
With over €500m in annual revenue, Entrust Datacard has a broad portfolio of complementary solutions to secure and control customers’ critical information and applications. The company is a global leader in Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) solutions and services — the primary use case for GP HSMs in protecting infrastructure private keys such as root and issuing Certification Authorities keys. This makes Entrust Datacard the ideal organization for Thales to divest this business, ensuring its leadership position in the GP HSMs market and providing trust, integrity and control to business-critical applications.
Philippe Keryer, Executive Vice-President, Strategy, Research and Technology at Thales, stated: “This announcement marks a key step in the ongoing process regarding the acquisition of Gemalto which we expect to close by end March 2019. We are convinced that nCipher Security will strongly leverage the expertise of Entrust Datacard, an organization focused on their competencies in the development of safe and secure access to information, applications and networks as well as its global presence specifically in Europe and in North America.”
Todd Wilkinson, president and CEO of Entrust Datacard stated: “This acquisition is an excellent complement to our expertise in both cryptography and hardware and will extend our ability to meet the evolving security needs of our customers globally while allowing us to accelerate our own growth. The Thales General Purpose HSM solution, known as nCipher Security, has a strong market position, brings with it exceptional internal talent and offers us the ability to develop even more comprehensive solutions for our clients.”
21 Feb 19. BAE – record orders and a diplomatic spat. Just prior to the release of full-year figures for BAE Systems (BA.), UK government officials were trying to convince their counterparts in Berlin to relax an embargo on military exports to Saudi Arabia which was imposed after the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. BAE is the lead contractor for the pan-European consortium working on the Eurofighter Typhoon in Saudi Arabia, and is tasked with maintenance duties, including the supply of new parts.
Measures have been taken to minimise disruption to supply chain activities, but the issue underlines the inherent political risk associated with the aerospace/defence market. German officials have said that Saudi Arabia’s military activities in neighbouring Yemen will also have a bearing on any deliberations to ease restrictions, so given that the UK government signed military procurement deals worth around $2bn (£1.5bn) during Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to London in March 2018, we might realistically expect a little more urgency on the regional diplomatic front by the Foreign Office.
Management will be praying for a speedy resolution, given the existing Memorandum of Intent signed between the UK and Saudi Arabia for the supply of another 48 Typhoons for the Desert Kingdom. The group has also commenced fulfilment on a Eurofighter/Hawk supply contract for the Qatar Emiri Air Force.
Elsewhere, much was made of Australia’s decision to select BAE as the preferred tenderer for the Hunter Class Frigate programme to deliver nine Future Frigates for the Royal Australian Navy. And the tub-thumping seems justified as the type 26 design is also being employed in Canada’s Surface Combatant programme.
So, even though sales and adjusted profits were down marginally on 2017, shareholders can take solace in an £8bn increase in order intake, which fed through to a 25 per cent increase in the backlog to £48.4bn.
Bloomberg consensus gives cash profits of £2.02bn for 2019, leading to adjusted EPS of 45.1p, against £1.93bn and 42.3p in 2018.
Closer to home, prospects were boosted by an extra £1bn for defence spending in the October budget, but the Military of Defence is still facing a budget shortfall with rumblings that it could impact the F-35 programme. The shares tanked in the final quarter of 2018 and are now under water on our buy call (605p, 2 Mar 2017), but we anticipate that enaction of the 2019 Defense Appropriations bill last September will bolster US demand, while adding support for the group’s medium-term planning assumptions. Buy. Last IC View: Buy, 641p, 1 Aug 2018. (Source: Investors Chronicle)
20 Feb 19. Bandura Cyber Expands Funding Round to Over $10m. Investment to Enhance Product Development and Fuel Marketing and Sales Efforts. Bandura Cyber, which pioneered the Threat Intelligence Gateway (TIG) industry in part with the U.S. Department of Defense, today announced a Series A round of funding. The round was led by Tenfore Holdings with participation from Grotech Ventures, Gula Tech Adventures, and Cultivation Capital. Joyce Shen of Tenfore Holdings will join the company’s board of directors as part of the round.
“Tens of millions of known malicious IP addresses and domains are attacking organizations daily. Bandura Cyber provides organizations the ability to use threat intelligence to proactively prevent these threats from burdening network defenses and staff resources.”
Transforming the way organizations detect and block threats, the Bandura TIG™ complements the firewall, enabling companies of all sizes to use threat intelligence without limits in an easy and automated way. The Bandura TIG can process over 100 million unique threat intelligence indicators at line speeds ahead of the firewall. With Bandura’s ability to filter both inbound and outbound traffic, the efficiency of expensive firewall resources is improved and the return on existing security investments increased. Bandura leads the Threat Intelligence Gateway market with a rapidly expanding user base and multiple issued and pending patents. The company continues to enhance its most comprehensive, scalable, and granular TIGs on the market.
The strategic funding will accelerate sales and marketing efforts to build on its current momentum with customers in financial services, healthcare, energy, and state and local government, as well as to make key investments in product development as the leading innovator in threat intelligence gateways.
“We are grateful for the support of our investors and the opportunity to deliver the power of automated threat intelligence to organizations of all sizes to block known threats at massive scale,” said CEO, Chris Fedde. “Tens of millions of known malicious IP addresses and domains are attacking organizations daily. Bandura Cyber provides organizations the ability to use threat intelligence to proactively prevent these threats from burdening network defenses and staff resources.”
“Bandura’s platform can give customers real ROI in investing in a first line of defense in cyber – helping customers to take action with threat intelligence in an automated and data-driven manner and at scale. The platform provides significant advancement in intelligent network defense that is ‘plug and defend,’ allowing existing CSOs and their teams to focus on value-added tasks. We are excited to be a part of Bandura’s growth,” said Joyce Shen.
Steve Fredrick, General Partner at Grotech Ventures, adds, “Companies today are working harder than ever to put the massive scale of threat intelligence to work. Automating threat intelligence, as Bandura Cyber does, brings unprecedented threat prevention to networks of all sizes. We are proud to continue to support Bandura as they make a defining mark in a large scope of industries.”
Gaining momentum throughout 2018, the Bandura TIG (formerly known as the PoliWall TIG) was awarded 4.75 out of 5 stars by SC Magazine’s lab team during an independent review of Threat Intelligence Providers, Platforms and Gateways. The company’s CEO, Chris Fedde, was also recently named a DCA Cyber Star for solving big problems in the DC region’s high growth cyber community. Strategic partnerships with Castra Consulting, Gigamon, and other key players also rounded out the year. To learn more about Bandura Cyber and to keep up to date on their latest announcements, please visit https://banduracyber.com.
About Bandura Cyber
Bandura pioneered the Threat Intelligence Gateway (TIG) in part with the U.S. Department of Defense. Organizations worldwide use the Bandura TIG for the automation and control needed to operationalize millions of threat indicators—blocking known threats before they even reach the network firewall. Underlying Bandura’s robust technology are multiple issued and pending patents. To learn more about how the Bandura TIG reduces an organization’s attack surface, operationalizes threat intelligence, and helps get more out of existing security investments, visit https://banduracyber.com. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
21 Feb 19. BAE Systems sees 2019 earnings growth despite geopolitical uncertainty. Britain’s biggest defence company BAE Systems said its earnings would grow in 2019 compared to a flat 2018, despite ongoing geopolitical uncertainty which could affect its business. BAE said it expected mid-single digit growth in underlying earnings per share in 2019, compared to a full-year figure for the year ending December 31 2018 of 42.9p, roughly flat on the previous year and in-line with expectations.
“The Group made good progress in strengthening the outlook and geographic base of the business, with a number of significant contract wins,” chief executive Charles Woodburn said on Thursday.
Despite growth in its backlog of defence orders, BAE said the group was “subject to geopolitical uncertainties” that could undermine its expected earnings growth.
Germany has attempted to halt weapons exports to Saudi Arabia in the wake of the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, but Britain has urged Germany to exempt big defence projects or face damage to its commercial credibility.
On Wednesday, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that future decisions on whether to deliver arms to Saudi Arabia will develop on how the conflict develops in Yemen.
BAE makes 16 percent of its annual sales from selling Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets and other arms to Saudi Arabia and the tensions have raised questions about the UK government’s £10bn deal to sell Saudi Arabia 48 new Typhoons, which are made by BAE Systems and its partners. The deal, confirmed in a memorandum of understanding in March, has not been finalised, and is not reflected in BAE’s 2018 financial statements. (Source: Reuters)
20 Feb 19. Rafael Buys Aeronautics for $235m. Israel’s state-owned Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and businessman Avihai Stolero signed a deal to buy unmanned aerial vehicle maker Aeronautics for 850m shekels ($235m) in cash, according to a regulatory filing. The purchase price of 15.36 shekels a share is double that of Aeronautics’ average share price in the 30 days prior to Rafael making its buyout offer on Jan. 13, Aeronautics said on Wednesday. Aeronautics’ market value has jumped to 786m shekels from 507m on Jan. 10. Aeronautics, which manufactures unmanned aerial vehicles for military surveillance and defence purposes, as well as for the commercial sector, will become private and its shares delisted from the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. (Source: UAS VISION/Nasdaq)
21 Feb 19. Naval Group improves its operating profitability for the fourth year running.
- Sales of €3.6bn (+13% vs 2017)
- Orders intake of €3.7bn, corresponding to an Order Book of €13.8bn
- EBITA of €265.9m, operating profit exceeds forecasts by 7.4% (+4.3pts vs 2017)
- Promising outlook for 2019
Naval Group’s Board of Directors met on 20 February 2019 to review the financial statement for the 2018 reporting period.
When commenting on these results, Hervé Guillou, Chairman and CEO of Naval Group, specifically stated: “For several years now, Naval Group has initiated an in-depth transformation. The company has sustainably restored operational control over its current and upcoming profit-earning activities. This transformation is evidenced by numerous success stories such as the complete overhaul of the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier in an exceptionally short time; the launch of Riachuelo, Brazil’s first submarine; or again in Egypt, the floating out of the first Gowind® built in Alexandria. We have been boosted by a positive market momentum, firstly, by the French military programming law which sets a binding framework for our activities, provides us with good visibility over major programs, and secondly, by a buoyant international market with, in particular, the signing of the contract for the Australian program. At the same time, we have noticed the rapid growth of competition. These achievements will ensure that Naval Group maintains the European leadership in naval defence.
Frank Le Rebeller, Executive Vice President Finance, Legal and Purchasing, added: “Since 2015, we have exceeded our growth and operating profitability objectives. We have demonstrated this positive momentum again in 2018. The results for the year (prepared in accordance with IFRS and, in particular with IFRS 15), show, for the fourth year running, and in accordance with our business plan, an increase in sales (+13% to €3.6bn) and a sharp improvement in our operating profitability, as well as in group net income, which amounts to nearly €180m. These results reveal the robust implementation and operational control of our different programs and the impact of our internal improvement plans. These results enabled us to hire more than 1,500 new employees in 2018 and raised our overall capital investment effort to more than €400m. We must now consolidate these operating profitability levels and ensure their long-term sustainability. Our development will be measured by the implementation of the military programming law for French markets and by international development. In this respect, the signature, on February 11, of the Strategic Partnering Agreement with Australia is particularly important.”
Main consolidated data
Order intake: 3.7bn euros
Order intake recorded in financial year 2018 amounted to €3,686m enabling the renewal of the order book which amounted to €13,830m. Orders recorded in France and overseas for financial year 2018 boosted all sectors. In France, in new construction, the main notifications concerned the nuclear–powered attack submarine (SSN) program Barracuda and the multimission frigates (FREMM) program. In services, several multi-year availability contracts were notified, particularly for Le Terrible, the ballistic-missile submarine, multimission frigates, nuclear–powered attack submarines and minesweepers (CMT). Lastly, international notifications mainly concerned the Argentine patrol boats program as well as a section of additional work relating to the future submarine program for Australia (AFS).
It is recalled that 2017 benefited from a particularly high level of orders taken, in particular due to the notification of the program for future defence and intervention frigates (e.g. FTI).
In the last two years from 2017 to 2018, the Book-to-Bill ratio (orders taken divided by sales), which is a measure of the order book’s renewal rate, is 1.13.
Activity: sales up by 13%
Consolidated sales stood at €3,608m. The 13% growth over 2017 was mainly driven by major national programs, in particular the Barracuda nuclear–powered attack submarine and the FREMM. The international markets benefited from the strong contribution of Brazil and Australia, while services also contributed significantly, in particular through the modernisation programme for the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier and the M51 adaptation program for the SSBN Le Téméraire.
Profitability: significant growth of EBITA and operating profit
EBITA (earnings before interest, taxes and amortisation) amounted to €265.9 m. Its increase (170%), greater than that for revenues, translates into a further improvement of operating profit, which increased from 3.1% in 2017 (after restatement under IFRS 15) to 7.4% in 2018, i.e., an increase of 4,3 percentage points.
This robust momentum reflects the operational improvement of all naval programs and the effectiveness of the improvement plans implemented for more than four years now.
The group net income amounts to €178.2 m, an increase of almost €85 m compared to 2017 (restated under IFRS 15). It reflects the consequences of the liquidation in July 2018 of our tidal turbine activities carried out by OpenHydro, subsidiary of Naval Energies. This performance raises the group’s consolidated equity to more than €1bn, thus strengthening its capacity to finance its future growth. Outlook: an increase in recruitment and investments; continuation of cost-control initiatives
The gains achieved through the industrial and social pact allow Naval Group to invest, the prerequisite for its development. In 2018, Naval Group hired more than 1,500 new employees and this momentum is set to continue, thanks in particular to the Campus initiatives of naval industries in the area of vocational training.
Naval Group is also stepping up its investments in self-financed research and development, data systems, infrastructures and industrial tools and equipment for studies or production.
In particular, Naval Group has spent several years getting ready to implement digital maintenance on board its ships and intends to generalise i-maintenance. The installation of this digital integrated support will make predictive maintenance activities possible. The Aquitaine FREMM was the first to benefit from this technology in November 2018 in Brest and will be followed by L’Auvergne in spring 2019 in Toulon before this service is proposed to all of the company’s customers.
Throughout the 2019 reporting period, Naval Group will pursue its initiative to continuously improve the competitiveness of its offers and current programs, both in France and on international markets, driven in particular by the control of costs and lead times and acceleration of innovation cycles. The ability to attain its commercial and operational objectives should allow the group to maintain high operating profit levels over a long period.
 As IFRS 15 is applicable to annual periods beginning on or after 1 January 2018, the consolidated financial data for 2017 has been restated according to IFRS 15 to ensure comparability.
 Earnings before interest, taxes and amortisation. EBITA includes the CIR (Research Tax Credit).
20 Feb 19. Collins Aerospace seeks to boost annual Middle East and Africa revenue beyond $1bn. The recently acquired unit of United Technologies derives nearly 55 per cent of its revenue from international sales
“We would like to see if the region would have a hub for avionics in the UAE,” says Talel Kamel.
Collins Aerospace, the US plane parts maker acquired by United Technologies Corporation for $23bn, expects its annual Middle East and Africa sales to top $1bn as it expands its reach in the region, buoyed by the take-over completed last year.
The company, formerly known as Rockwell Collins, is seeking to boost its presence in the UAE by partnering with local defence companies and working within the Tawazun Economic Programme, formerly known as the UAE Offset Programme, which creates additional economic value from the country’s extensive defence procurement activities, said Talel Kamel, vice president for the Middle East and Africa. He was speaking at the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (Idex) taking place in Abu Dhabi this week.
“We have also through Tawazun Economic offset programme engaged into partnerships about how we are going to increase our local footprint from the industrial point of view,” said Mr Kamel. “There is no avionics capability as such between Toulouse and Singapore and we would like to see if the region would have a hub for avionics in the UAE.”
Collins, which derives 55 per cent of its about $25bn in revenue from international sales, is a big supplier of parts to plane makers including Boeing and Airbus, with commercial sales globally accounting for 75 per cent of total income and the remainder from military deals.
In MEA, military sales account for around 30 per cent of its regional sales. The company is ramping up its MEA sales pivot after the takeover boosted its presence to nine countries and 15 locations in the region.
“We are in the first three months of our acquisition and we are setting up aggressive growth targets for the company as a whole and the region,” said Mr Kamel.
In the UAE, the company has the biggest localised content in the region through its maintenance repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), which serves the country’s local airlines and other UTC products. Collins Aerospace plans to invest more in the UAE, Mr Kamel said, declining to put a figure on the investment. The company also plans to start talks with state-owned Saudi Arabian Military Industries (Sami) on cooperating in the field of defence. The Saudi entity is tasked with localising at least 50 per cent of the kingdom’s military spending by 2030.
Mr Kamel expects the recent agreement between Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Company and Sami to help foster greater cooperation in the defence sector to the benefit of companies such as Collins.
“We look at the growing collaboration between the UAE and KSA as very favourable and we like the fact that the two countries through Sami and Mubadala are encouraging companies such as ours to serve the UAE and KSA markets,” he said. He added that the agreement between the Abu Dhabi strategic investment firm Mubadala and Sami will help target the relevant capabilities that are going to be needed to grow the industrial footprint between the two countries. (Source: Google/https://www.thenational.ae)
19 Feb 19. Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) has received notification of an unsolicited “mini-tender” offer by TRC Capital Corporation (TRC Capital) to purchase up to 500,000 shares, or approximately 0.29 percent of the outstanding common stock of the company as of Jan. 28, 2019. TRC Capital’s offer price of $274.25 per share in cash is approximately 4.44% less than the $286.98 closing price of the company’s common stock on Feb. 15, 2019, the last trading day before the mini-tender offer commenced.
The company does not endorse TRC Capital’s mini-tender offer and recommends that shareholders do not tender their shares in response to the offer. The offer is at a price below the current market price for Northrop Grumman shares and is subject to various conditions. Mini-tender offers, such as this one by TRC Capital, seeking to acquire less than 5 percent of a company’s outstanding shares, avoid many disclosure and procedural requirements of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that apply to larger tender offers. As a result, these mini-tender offers do not provide investors with the same level of protection as provided by larger tender offers under U.S. federal securities laws.
The company urges shareholders to obtain current market quotes for their shares, to review the conditions to TRC Capital’s mini-tender offer, to consult with their brokers or financial advisors and to exercise caution with respect to this mini-tender offer. The company is in no way associated with TRC Capital, the mini-tender offer or the offer documentation.
The SEC has cautioned investors about offers of this type, noting that “[s]ome bidders make mini-tender offers at below-market prices, hoping that they will catch investors off guard if the investors do not compare the offer price to the current market price.” The SEC’s Tips for Investors regarding mini-tender offers may be found on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov/investor/pubs/minitend.htm.
According to the TRC Capital offer documents received by the company, Northrop Grumman shareholders who have already tendered their shares may withdraw their shares by providing written notice described in TRC Capital’s offering documents prior to the expiration of the offer, currently scheduled for 12:01 a.m., New York City time on March 20, 2019.
The company encourages broker-dealers and other market participants in the dissemination of the offer to review the SEC’s recommendations to broker-dealers in these circumstances, which can be found on the SEC website at http://www.sec.gov/divisions/marketreg/minitenders/sia072401.htm and Information Memo Number 01-27 issued by the NYSE on Sept. 28, 2001, which can be found on the NYSE website at https://www.nyse.com/publicdocs/nyse/markets/nyse/rule-interpretations/2001/01-27.pdf regarding the dissemination of mini-tender offer materials.
The company requests that a copy of this news release be included with all distributions of materials relating to TRC Capital’s mini-tender offer.
18 Feb 19. How FlightGlobal is regrouping under Cirium brand. Christopher Flook, Cirium chief executive, says the revamp will allow the organisation to communicate its breadth and depth of expertise to an increasingly diverse client base. “We have been through a lot of changes in the last few years, and brought together many businesses and assets,” he says, referring to the spree of acquisitions that has seen the business more than quadruple in size in less than a decade.
The new name was chosen to deliberately steer clear of “anything that locked us into any sector”, says Flook. However, while it had to be “neutral”, Cirium has associations with “being in the cloud, being at high altitude, and working with data sets in the cloud that are always changing”. He adds: “It’s about bringing control to an industry that is constantly in motion.”
The business’s data and analytics group – including acquired businesses – FlightStats, Ascend, Diio and Innovata – and well-known products Ascend Values Analyzer, Diio Mi, Fleets Analyzer and web and mobile app FlightStats – come directly under the Cirium brand.
The FlightGlobal name continues as a distinct brand within the Cirium portfolio, comprising the aerospace publishing and conferences businesses which were key foundation stones for what is now the most powerful data, analytics and advisory force in aviation, aerospace and travel management.
A reason for the change is that FlightGlobal was too deeply associated in the industry’s mind with publishing – our flagship magazine Flight International has been in print for 110 years.
“We are proud of FlightGlobal and the FlightGlobal products,” says Flook. “But it meant we were unable to clearly position ourselves as a technology business, and put ourselves at the table automatically when customers were looking for a data and analytics solution.”
The creation of the umbrella Cirium brand will allow the business finally to realise its potential, maintains Flook. “Through our acquisitions, we have brought together industry-leading data sets, but those are often still perceived as being discrete data sets. Our new product development is about fusing these data sets into a data lake to create analytics that will solve problems in different ways,” he says. “It’s about creating a single company that draws on all these assets.”
Flook acknowledges that unveiling an entirely new name is a “challenge”, given that “the brands we have are very powerful with great reputations in their niches”. Educating customers will not “happen overnight”, he says, but “we are putting all our effort into communicating as clearly as possible what Cirium is”. The big opportunity is explaining to the industry what Cirium “represents as a group”, he says. “Nothing that our customers appreciate and value in those premium brands is being lost. It’s about more than becoming the sum of our parts.”
The reputation of some of these legacy brands is why several names will remain, not as brands but products within the Cirium portfolio. These include Diio Mi, a tool used by airlines and airports to analyse routes, and flightstats.com, the customer-facing, real-time flight-tracking service, which has more than 7 million users. Meanwhile the famous Ascend consultancy name will continue to be used in connection with the Cirium brand in the fleet valuations sector.
Back in 1909, Flight magazine, as was, produced its inky pages in a tiny, dusty office in London. Today, Cirium employs more than 400 people around the globe. The majority are technologists, data analysts, data scientists and market experts.
Their skills are essential for the sort of organic growth – “not dependent on acquisition” – Flook envisages. Strategic ties with other organisations are vital too. “We have collectively secured the best data sets, but we are always looking at further partnerships to expand on the data sets we have,” he says.
Cirium, he predicts, will become a brand that resonates with a range of customers, including airlines, OEMs and financial institutions, to metasearch and travel management companies. While the aviation sector has recognised the Flight name since 1909, Flook believes Cirium will take the wider business to the next level: “It’s a brand”, he says, “that will last us for the next 110 years.” (Source: News Now/https://www.flightglobal.com)
18 Feb 19. Cobham-Boeing settlement. Defence group Cobham has announced it will pay £160m to Boeing to settle a dispute over their heavily delayed US tanker project. Boeing had said in July that it would claim unquantified damages from the British company over continuing issues with the KC-46 tanker, a military refuelling system for the US Air Force that was finally delivered last month after more than a decade of problems. glitches and delays. Boeing has also agreed to pay Cobham £49m to settle withheld invoices, but the UK group will not be able to account for this until it publishes its results for the first half of 2019. OQ verdict: Cobham shareholders were expecting a bumpy landing but perhaps not as bad as this one. When Boeing announced its claim, the UK group took a £40m charge to cover the costs. Now it has to find £86m in compensation and £74m in additional costs, which will come out of 2018 full-year profit. (Source: FT.com)
14 Feb 19. Boeing and Safran Announce New APU JV Name: Initium Aerospace. Initium Aerospace will create high value for customers, combining the best technologies and services of Boeing and Safran to offer a more competitive APU in the marketplace. Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Safran [EPA: SAF] today announce the name of their 50-50 joint venture to design, build and service Auxiliary Power Units (APUs): Initium Aerospace.
From its Latin roots, initium means ‘the beginning’ or ‘to start.’ This is what an APU is and does when it provides the power to start the main aircraft engines and systems on the ground and, if necessary, in flight. Initium Aerospace starts with Boeing’s customer and airplane knowledge and Safran’s experience designing and producing complex propulsion systems.
“This is an exciting milestone as we bring together the best of both companies to design and build an advanced APU that will create more lifecycle value for our customers,” said Stan Deal, president and CEO, Boeing Global Services. “This is further proof that Boeing is making strategic investments that strengthen our vertical capabilities and continue to expand our services portfolio.”
The creation of Initium Aerospace follows the regulatory and antitrust approvals the joint venture received last November, after an agreement was reached in June.
“I would like to congratulate everybody at Boeing and Safran who contributed to the creation of this new joint venture,” said Philippe Petitcolin, CEO of Safran. “Initium Aerospace is swiftly capitalizing on the vast expertise of both partners to provide state-of-the-art APUs and innovative solutions to customers. Safran is proud and totally invested in supporting Boeing’s growth and operators expectations. We look forward to presenting the first demonstrator engine to the market.”
The initial team consists of employees from the two parent companies and is led by Etienne Boisseau, CEO of Initium Aerospace. Initial work is being done in San Diego, California, where they are focused on the next-generation APU design as well as collaborating with teams across Boeing and Safran on engineering and production. (Source: ASD Network)
14 Feb 19. Astronics Corporation Completes the Sale of its Semiconductor System Level Test Technology. Astronics Corporation (Nasdaq:ATRO), a leading provider of advanced technologies for the global aerospace, defense, and semiconductor industries, announced today that it has closed the previously announced sale of the intellectual property and certain assets associated with its semiconductor test product line to Advantest Corporation (TSE: 6857).
The terms of the transaction were renegotiated due to a change in business conditions related to the product line. The new terms include an upfront payment of $100m in cash, plus a potential earn-out payment of up to $35m based on certain performance milestones over the next 4 years. This compares with the previously announced $185m purchase price, plus an earn-out payment of up to $30m based on certain performance milestones. The renegotiated sales agreement does not include a manufacturing service contract as previously announced.
Peter J. Gundermann, President and CEO of Astronics, commented, “We have strong confidence in Advantest’s ability to further the adoption of these solutions across the semiconductor industry and expect that the team and competencies we have developed will achieve new highs under their ownership. We will continue to develop and advance our aerospace & defense test solutions while employing our multi-system test software capabilities in a variety of applications.” (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)