Lockheed Martin tipped to buy Sikorsky
In the last week, Reuters were first to announce the apparent reduction in bidders for Sikorsky to two – Bell’s parent company Textron and Lockheed Martin. Now the balance is clearly tipping in favour of Lockheed Martin, and figures around $8 billion are being suggested by the Sunday Times in the UK and the Wall Street Journal among others. That would make it Lockheed’s largest deal since it bought Martin Marietta Corp. for around $10 billion some 20 years ago, according to S&P Capital IQ.
In a press briefing celebrating 100 years of producing aircraft at their Yeovil UK site, AgustaWestland CEO Daniele Romiti told HeliHub.com and others that they (so parent company Finmeccanica in reality) were interested in seeing the outcome of UTC’s disposal of Sikorsky, but had not bid because the expected price was too high. There would also be an extended period of approving a foreign-owned company, particularly given the Italian Government holds just under a third of the shares in Finmeccanica.
An announcement is expected before the end of this month. It will be interesting to see Lockheed Martin’s plans for the civilian-focused S76 and S92 production lines, as the whole ethos of the company is oriented to the military.
Jeremy Parkin – HeliHub.com