MANAGEMENT ON THE MOVE
27 Mar 08. Airbus has terminated negotiations with the OHB/MT aerospace consortium over the sale of Airbus sites in Nordenham and Varel and an EADS site in Augsburg. Airbus said it couldn’t achieve a viable industrial and financial solution with OHB. The plane maker said it will continue searching for other solutions, although it added that volatility in financial markets and the dollar exchange rate aren’t conducive to the process.
21 Mar 08. DCNS rolled out SSBN Le Terrible, the fourth and last Le Triomphant-class new-generation nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine at a ceremony attended by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Over 3,000 people witnessed the roll-out at DCNS’s Cherbourg shipyard, the home of excellence in French submarine construction for over 100 years. SSBN Le Terrible is the fourth and last boat of the Le Triomphant class which is progressively replacing the earlier Le Redoutable class. Like its predecessors, the Le Terrible will be assigned to the French Navy’s Strategic Ocean Force (FOST). SSBN Le Terrible, the construction of which began in 2000, is the first to be equipped with the SAD M51 weapon deterrent system. The other three Le Triomphant-class boats will be upgraded to carry M51 missiles as they come up for refit.
Mar 08. US Company Cubic Corporation, has chosen Townsville as the location for Cubic Defence Australia. Regional Development and Industry Minister Desley Boyle welcomes the announcement as it reinforces Queensland’s strategic advantages for defence sector companies.
21 Mar 08. A South Carolina company building a military vehicle plant in Person County denies it’s abandoning the plans. Force Protection of Ladson, South Carolina, said last summer it would use a plant in Roxboro to build its Cheetah line of armored vehicles, which are lighter and more maneuverable than previous models. But Force Protection has faced accounting problems, shareholder lawsuits and a loss of market share. The company started construction in December and was supposed to create 270 jobs. It planned to have at least 70 workers making the blast-resistant vehicles by now. The News & Observer of Raleigh reports there were fewer than two dozen workers Thursday with no activity on the assembly line. Force Protection spokesman Tommy Pruitt denies the company will abandon the plant, but would not say when production might begin. (Source: News & Observer of Raleigh)
26 Mar 08. Tata Motors has promised to keep Jaguar and Land Rover’s three UK plants and two product engineering sites open until at least 2011 as part of its winning bid to buy the two carmakers, it emerged on Wednesday. The Indian group’s pledge appears to have played a decisive role in securing unions’ endorsement of its $2.3bn bid for the two brands, which will see Ford Motor continue to supply them with engines, components and technology, and its credit arm to provide vehicle financing for up to a year. (Source: FT.com)
JOB LOSSES AND STRIKES
27 Mar 08. Defence chiefs came under pressure yesterday to abandon delayed plans to build two aircraft carriers and replace the ageing Nimrod aircraft. Either move could lead to massive job losses in Scotland as the new Nimrod surveillance planes would replace those at RAF Kinloss, while the £3.9bn aircraft carriers would bring work to Rosyth dockyards and to the Clyde and Govan. But MPs on the Commons defence committee warned that delays and cost-overruns on a number of orders for new defence equipment were now so great that “salami-slicing” projects to keep them closer to budget may no longer be possible. The report highlighted the Ministry of Defence’s own deadline of 31 March for final contracts to be signed on the aircraft carriers. They are due to enter service in 2014 and 2016. (Source: Scotsman)
15 Mar 08. The Russian armed forces chief of staff is close to stepping down after falling out with the defense minister, media reports in Moscow s