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27 Aug 02. General Dynamics (NYSE: GD – News) has acquired privately held Command System Incorporated (CSI) of Fort Wayne, Indiana; terms of the transaction were not disclosed. CSI provides command and control software and hardware to U.S. and international military markets; it has 34 employees.

CSI will become part of General Dynamics C4 Systems, which is based in Taunton, Massachusetts. Specializing in rapid deployment and development of command and control systems, CSI has sold more than 300,000 licenses in eight countries for its off-the-shelf command and control suites. It is a participant in the U.S. Army Future Combat Systems program, and its products are key elements of the Army’s Objective Force Warrior, the UK’s BOWMAN and Digitization programs.

“This is a superb business with talented employees, and a great fit for C4 Systems,” said Gerard J. DeMuro, president of General Dynamics C4 Systems. “It expands and strengthens our portfolio of command and control systems capabilities. It also increases our role in key transformational programs and gives us a broader range of situational awareness products for ground forces, as well as products for civilian emergency services and technologies with Homeland Security application.” The newly acquired capabilities complement C4 Systems’ current products and services, which include mobile, secure communications, networking, computing, and joint fire coordination systems.

“After extensive evaluation of potential worldwide acquirers, it was clear that becoming part of General Dynamics C4 Systems would yield the most powerful synergy,” said Donald R. Willis, who had been president of CSI. Willis will become a consultant to General Dynamics C4 Systems.

Comment: this is a smart move by GD and brings strong capability in networking technology into GD’s C4I segment. Command Systems is already working on the BOWMAN programme and as the system moves to the next stage of Digitization, the company’s workload should increase substantially. Experience in the US showed that once the Force XXI program moved from simulation to fielding, one of the most important aspects was the networking capabilities of the contractor. In addition the selection of the GD Team for the WIN-T program will also benefit Command Systems.(See BATTLESPACE ALERT Vol.4 ISSUE 31, August 10th 2002).

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