NP AEROSPACE AND FORCE PROTECTION ANNOUNCE NEW ALLIANCE
06 April 2009. NP Aerospace Limited, a subsidiary of The Morgan Crucible Company plc, and Force Protection, Inc. today announced the establishment of a 50:50Â joint venture company in the United Kingdom, Integrated Survivability Technologies Limited (IST). IST has been awarded the contract for the Wolfhound Tactical Support Vehicle by the UK Ministry of Defence. The £84m contract involves the supply of 97 heavy tactical support vehicles to be supplied over the next 12 months based on the combat proven Cougar design. The development will create 50 new jobs within NP Aerospace and the supplier base.
NP Aerospace and Force Protection have already worked together significantly to supply mine resistant ambush protected vehicles to the UK MoD, which to date has ordered a total of 447 Mastiff 6×6 and Ridgback 4×4. Both are based on the Force Protection Cougar vehicle whilst Coventry based NP Aerospace carries out the integration and armouring work. These vehicles are in service in Iraq and Afghanistan. UK MoD has also ordered 14 Force Protection Buffalo route clearance vehicles.
The establishment of IST marks a significant new chapter in the partnership between NP Aerospace and Force Protection. It is IST’s aim to become a single point of contact and Design Authority for all existing and future business related to the Cougar and Buffalo based vehicles in the United Kingdom.
Mark Robertshaw, Chief Executive Officer of Morgan Crucible said “This is a further exciting development for the NP Aerospace business, securing a long term strategic relationship with Force Protection and providing our customer with a truly integrated product offering. I am confident that this contract, which will provide NP Aerospace itself with revenue of in excess of £30 million, will be the start of a very successful future for our joint venture.”
Michael Moody, Force Protection Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of IST, said, “Much like the Wolfhound vehicle requirement, Force Protection and NP Aerospace have come a long way in a very short time. We have established a partnership in the United Kingdom that we believe will become the base for growing our relationship with the UK Ministry of Defence. One of the key elements in our success is the way we work with our strategic partners and this proven formula is now being applied to the UK market. We are confident that it will bring benefits most importantly to the UK forces operating in hostile environments around the globe.”
Mike Linton, Managing Director of IST and previously Manufacturing Director of NP Aerospace, said, “Force Protection and NP Aerospace have been working successfully to bring these vitally important vehicles into theatre. Our new, integrated operation here in the UK will bring tangible benefits in terms of an enhanced ability to tailor our vehicle solutions to customer needs. A direct commercial relationship with the companies working on the integration of Force Protection vehicles will also result in more efficient development and production programmes, saving the customer both time and money.”
He continued, “IST will combine prime contractor and Design Authority functions, which will enable MoD to place the appropriate delivery and support risks with industry. As the Design Authority for the UK fleet of Cougar variants, IST can also take a coherent approach to issues such as electronics architecture, human factors interfaces, antennae solutions and power management systems, together with integration of the MoD’s Defence Lines of Development. We shall also be ideally placed to provide a coherent support solution strategy for all UKÂ variants of the Cougar, taking advantage, where appropriate, of initiatives being explored in the USÂ fleet.”
A new breed of vehicle to give troops increased protection as they support missions in high threat areas is now on order following the signing of a £90m contract.