BAE Systems wants to lead F-15 upgrades market

BAE Systems said on Tuesday it wants to dominate the F-16 fighter jet upgrades market by taking business away from competitor Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon's biggest contractor.

BAE Systems said on Tuesday it wants to dominate the F-16 fighter jet upgrades market by taking business away from competitor Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon's biggest contractor.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Dave Herr, President of BAE's support solutions business, said the London-based company was working to increase international sales and become a leader in the $3.0bn market for F-16 upgrades.

"We're looking at potentially where to take this next," Herr said in a phone interview. "It's a big opportunity for us."

The company last year won against Lockheed for a deal to refurbish about 130 of South Korea's jets through a US Foreign Military Sales programme.

It was the first time a company other than Lockheed has landed such a contract, Herr said.

Competition in the industry has increased as the US and Europe continues to grapple with financial woes that make it hard to afford new fighter jets, according to Kevin Brancato, a Washington-based defence analyst at Bloomberg Government.

With more than 2,200 F-16s sold outside the US to countries including Egypt, Turkey, Greece, Thailand and Chile, refurbishing the jets offers lucrative opportunities for competitors to take market share away from Lockheed, he added.

Lockheed may have lost its focus on F-16 work as it turns its eye to F-35 jets, the Pentagon's most expensive weapons programme, said Richard Aboulafia, a defence and aerospace analyst with Teal Group, a consulting firm based in Fairfax, Virginia.

However, Benjamin Boling, a spokesman for Lockheed, said the company was "committed to meeting the sustainment and modernization needs of F-16 operators around the world for decades to come".

RD

Recommended

How to profit from India’s high-tech recovery
Share tips

How to profit from India’s high-tech recovery

Professional investor David Cornell of the India Capital Growth Fund, selects three of his favourite Indian stocks to buy now.
27 Sep 2021
Share tips of the week – 24 September
Share tips

Share tips of the week – 24 September

MoneyWeek’s comprehensive guide to the best of this week’s share tips from the rest of the UK's financial pages.
24 Sep 2021
Three strong Asian stocks trading at bargain prices
Share tips

Three strong Asian stocks trading at bargain prices

Professional investor Nitin Bajaj of the Fidelity Asian Values investment trust picks three stocks that dominate their industries, earn good returns o…
20 Sep 2021
Why it pays to face up to your investment mistakes
Investment strategy

Why it pays to face up to your investment mistakes

Buying stocks can be a complicated business. But selling stocks can be tricky, too – even if you sell for the right reasons. Max King explains how to …
17 Sep 2021

Most Popular

A nightmare 1970s scenario for investors is edging closer
Investment strategy

A nightmare 1970s scenario for investors is edging closer

Inflation need not be a worry unless it is driven by labour market shortages. Unfortunately, writes macroeconomist Philip Pilkington, that’s exactly w…
17 Sep 2021
Two shipping funds to buy for steady income
Investment trusts

Two shipping funds to buy for steady income

Returns from owning ships are volatile, but these two investment trusts are trying to make the sector less risky.
7 Sep 2021
What really causes inflation? Here’s what prices since 1970 tell us
Inflation

What really causes inflation? Here’s what prices since 1970 tell us

As UK inflation hits 3.2%, Dominic Frisby compares the cost of living 50 years ago with that of today, and explains how debt drives prices higher.
15 Sep 2021