The USA’s Mine-Resistant, Ambush Protected (MRAP) program has been a long road for BAE Systems. In the wake of the US Army’s belated realization that mine protection was critical for vehicles in theater, BAE’s designs, long-standing experience in the field, and production capacity had made them an early favorite. Early results were a deeply humbling experience for the firm, but a combination of acquisitions, persistence, and product development combined to recover 2nd place status by the time MRAP orders ceased.
This in-depth, updated DID feature shines a spotlight on BAE Systems’ family of MRAP offerings, order record, and associated contracts. That includes its RG-33 family, the derivative MRRMV recovery vehicle, and the FMTV-based Caiman family, but not the RG-31s offered in partnership with General Dynamics. The MRAP program appears to have reached its vehicle limit, but upgrades and maintenance contracts are still a significant source of business.
October. 10, 2012: EADS announces [PDF] that they and BAE have decided to terminate their merger discussions.
They confirm what had been widely discussed in the past month, with mounting pressure in recent days:
“it has become clear that the interests of the parties’ government stakeholders cannot be adequately reconciled with each other or with the objectives that BAE Systems and EADS established for the merger.”
With the US Congress back from recess this week, Senator John McCain [R-AZ] released selected quotes from the CEOs of the major primes pointing to the uncertainty and disruption associated with sequestration. Meanwhile the OMB is past its deadline on the report Congress mandated them to produce on the effect of sequestration on readiness.
The Pentagon told Congress back in May that corrosion costs the Department almost $21B a year, according to an assessment of that report by the GAO that otherwise finds it lacking. (The DoD FY13 corrosion report itself does not seem to be publicly available). The Senate Armed Services Committee voiced similar concerns earlier this year in its report 112-173.
The Partnership for Public Service nonprofit and the Washington Post published a fawning profile of Elliott Branch, the US Navy’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for acquisition. Pointing to LCS as a program where the Navy excelled in finding savings is, uh, bold.
The Congressional Research Service updated their report [PDF] on international conventional weapon sales with 2011 data. Agreements for new sales from the US to developing nations boomed above $56B or a close to 80% market share, leaving #2 Russia far behind. The mega deal with Saudi Arabia was the biggest contributor to that surge in demand for American armament. Deliveries during 2011 were less lopsided but the US still led with close to 38% of the total in value.
The RAND Corporation looked into the reasons behind high cost increases in the Army Excalibur artillery round and the Navy’s Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) programs. In the case of Excalibur, smaller ordered quantities was the primary driver for its Nunn-McCurdy cost breach. Looking for a deeper root cause, that reduction was triggered by the increased precision of modern artillery. Meanwhile the Navy ERP started with an optimistic baseline, as happens very often with software implementation projects.
Switchblade UAVs to launch from subs? While they could retain their kamikaze capabilities, the reality is that sub-launched UAVs are going to be 1-shot items at first. Why not adapt an existing UAV designed for that?
InnoCentive offers a $15,000 reward for a concept or design of a medical transportation device that would enable a rescuer to quickly and safely transport an injured person away from an active combat site.
At least the US Navy is not facing a fire on one of its nuclear submarines, unlike its Russian counterpart yesterday.
Thursday was not a good day for the Russian military since they also had a Su-24 crash. These crashes have happened like clockwork over the years [in Russian]. Nobody died in either incident yesterday though some people appear to have been injured in the submarine fire.
Yet another cybersecurity acquisition for Raytheon: Henggeler Computer Consultants, Inc. It’s the 2nd this month and the 10th in the last 4 years.
The Pentagon is considering updating Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) to incorporate a “proposal adequacy checklist” for proposals in response to solicitations that require submission of certified cost or pricing data. Comments should be sent to DoD in writing before January 31, 2012, to be considered in the formation of the final rule.
In October 2009, ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) effectively sold most of its naval and commercial surface shipbuilding assets, via a “close strategic partnership” and Memorandum of Understanding with the Abu Dhabi MAR (ADM) group in the United Arab Emirates. The proposed sale followed related purchases in Germany by Abu Dhabi MAR, and other recent shipyard sales by TKMS. The net effect was a restructuring of Germany’s naval shipbuilding industry.
The envisioned agreement involved a 50/50 joint venture to build naval surface ships, with TKMS retaining a lead role and know-how in all projects with the German Navy and NATO partners, while ADM was responsible for the Middle East and North Africa. At the same time, however, Abu Dhabi MAR would acquiring 80% of TKMS’ key surface ship firms: Blohm + Voss Shipyards, Blohm + Voss Repair, and Blohm + Voss Industries. That deal has largely fallen through in 2011, leaving TKMS naval assets in play again.
The House Appropriations Committee approves the FY12 Defense Appropriations legislation. The bill contains $530 billion in non-emergency funding, an increase of $17 billion over last year’s level, but $9 billion below President Obama’s request. The Committee also agreed to withhold 75% of the $1.1 billion-worth of aid for Pakistan, until the administration reports on how it would spend the money. It isn’t a budget, however, until Senate reconciliation happens.
The latest companiesandmarkets.com report predicts that the global aerospace and defense sector will achieve revenues of $399 billion by 2015. While the United States will retain its position as the largest aerospace and defense market, the Asia-Pacific region will experience the fastest growth during the reporting period.
The head of the French Navy tells The Telegraph that he was ‘stunned’ by the Royal Navy’s decision to axe its aircraft carriers and Harrier jump jets.
Almost three months after RAFAEL’s ASPROA-/Trophy active protection system was used to intercept an anti-tank missile fired at an IDF tank in the Gaza Strip, reports suggest that the U.S. military is close to combining two active protection systems into a single defense for armored vehicles in Afghanistan.
By August 2010, however, the acquisition had shifted to a targeted buy of several Mikal properties. The move will consolidate Elbit’s position in a number of sectors, offering the prospect of close links between its sensors, targeting systems, UAVs, and front-line battlefield platforms.