Leonardo Launches New Growth Plan

by Richard Pettibone, Aerospace & Defense Companies Analyst, Forecast International.

Leonardo and its U.S. subsidiary DRS Technologies are offering the T-100, a variant of the M-346 Master, for the USAF T-X trainer program. (Photo: Leonardo)

Following a difficult year into the company’s rebranding, Leonardo’s management has launched another industrial plan, dubbed Leonardo 2.0, that aims to achieve double-digit profitability over the next five years, tighten project cost control, and invest some EUR500 million ($624 million) in core technologies. This move follows lackluster results for 2017, which saw sales drop 4 percent – from EUR12.0 billion in 2016 to EUR11.5 billion in 2017. The company reported net income of EUR274 million for the year, compared to EUR507 million for 2016. Continue reading

Airbus Navigates through a Challenging Year and Lands with a More Stable Outlook

by Richard Pettibone, Aerospace & Defense Companies Analyst, Forecast International.

A380. Source, Airbus

Airbus had quite the tumultuous year, with corruption investigations, aircraft delivery delays due to engine issues, doubts over the A380’s future, and financial penalties associated with its A400M airlifter.  Despite the difficulties, the company did score a major win during the year with its surprise acquisition of a majority stake in Bombardier’s CSeries program. The year ahead looks to be one of transition as management changeover at the top level continues apace. Continue reading

Airborne Retrofit & Modernization Highlights

by Matthew Beres, Airborne Retrofit & Modernization Analyst, Forecast International.

This blog post briefly highlights Airborne Retrofit & Modernization news from the past week. More in-depth news can be found in Forecast’s E-Market Alert. To the minute R&M news can also be found via the Forecast R&M twitter account, @MBeresFI.

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Thailand-Russia Relations Warm as Defense Industrial Collaboration Agreement Nears Finalization

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Mi-8MTV-5 (export variant: Mi-17V-5) is a medium-lift military helicopter. Photo – Russian Нelicopters, JSC.

Ties between Russia and Thailand appear to be heating up on the defense front following a meeting in Bangkok on January 16 between Russian defense officials and military leadership of the Royal Thai Armed Forces. According to reports, the meeting involved discussions of a potential government-to-government accord aimed at military-technical cooperation. The agreement outline in question would extend Thailand partnership status on a jointly run production and maintenance facility for the Mil Mi-17V-5 transport helicopter export variant. Continue reading

Safran Helicopter Engines Hovers Above the Turboshaft Pack

by Carter Palmer, Power Systems Specialist, Forecast International.

Assembly work at Safran Helicopter Engines ~ (c) Cyril Abad / CAPA Pictures / Safran

Helicopters – Unequalled maneuverability; life-saving capability; powerful and indispensable. The helicopter’s value is undisputed and its utility second to none.  Companies  like Cierva, Breguet, and Sikorski did the pioneering work that resulted in the helicopters we now depend on. Today, the V-22 and AW609 are revolutionizing the field with their tilt-rotor technology, while utilizing capabilities that would astound those early developers. Continue reading

World Medium/Heavy Military Rotorcraft Market on the Decline

By Ray Jaworowski, Senior Aerospace Analyst, Forecast International.

Bell Boeing V-22

Bell Boeing V-22

Forecast International expects that 4,791 medium/heavy military rotorcraft will be produced from 2016 through 2025.  The value of this production, as calculated in constant FY16 U.S. dollars, is $115.7 billion.

Through most of the 10-year forecast period, the market will experience declining annual production.  Yearly production is expected to decline nearly steadily from 578 units in 2016 to 410 units in 2025.  Annual production value during this timeframe is expected to follow a somewhat similar trend.  Annual value is projected to decrease from $14.1 billion in 2016 to $10.4 billion in 2025, with this decline interrupted only by a brief two-year period of growth in 2022-2023. Continue reading

Changes in Competitive Landscape Mark Medium/Heavy Military Rotorcraft Market

By Ray Jaworowski, Senior Aerospace Analyst, Forecast International.

V-280. Source - Bell Helicopter

V-280. Source – Bell Helicopter

In its latest study on the medium/heavy military rotorcraft market, Forecast International is projecting that 4,744 such rotorcraft will be produced from 2016 through 2025.  The value of this production is estimated at $115 billion in constant 2016 U.S. dollars.  In general, we define a medium/heavy military rotorcraft as one having a gross weight of 6,804 kilograms (15,000 lb) or greater.

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Hungary Swims against NATO Tide, Seeks Russian Helicopters

by Dan Darling, International Military Markets Analyst, Forecast International.

Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter.

Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter.

As tensions between Moscow and the West persist nearly two years after Moscow’s takeover of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, the trend among Eastern European nations that are members of the NATO Alliance has been to move away from Russian-sourced military hardware. Most of these former Warsaw Pact states are seeking to retire their aging and obsolete Soviet-vintage equipment and replace such materiel with NATO-standard, Western-produced hardware. Continue reading

Finmeccanica’s Reorganization Continues Apace

by Richard Pettibone, Aerospace & Defense Companies Analyst, Forecast International.

Alenia Aermacchi M-346

Alenia Aermacchi M-346

Finmeccanica’s restructuring is beginning to pick up steam. In late 2014, the company initiated a landmark restructuring that will streamline operations, reduce redundancies, and possibly lead to the sale of some non-core assets. Continue reading

Sikorsky Will Be Just Fine On Its Own

Sikorsky

by Raymond Jaworowski, Forecast International.

The long-term business potential of Sikorsky Aircraft is bright, despite the fact that parent firm United Technologies Corp (UTC) is reviewing the possibility of selling Sikorsky or spinning it off into an independent firm. As reasons for a possible divestiture, UTC management has cited uncertainties regarding the military helicopter market as well as Sikorsky’s lower profit margins compared to other UTC units.

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