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

Shifts and Changes in Line-Up of T-X Contenders

by Ray Jaworowski, Senior Aerospace Analyst, Forecast International.

US Air Force T-38 Talon Trainer

The U.S. Air Force’s T-X advanced trainer program is one of the biggest prizes in the military aircraft market in the near future.  This is due to the scale of the program itself:  under the program, the Air Force intends to buy 350 advanced jet trainers to replace its fleet of Northrop T-38Cs.  In addition, the winning T-X aircraft will be in a position to become perhaps the leading competitor in the future global market for advanced jet trainers. Continue reading

USAF Postpones T-X RFP

by Ray Jaworowski, Senior Aerospace Analyst, Forecast International.

Lockheed Martin/Korea Aerospace Industries T-50A. Source: Lockheed Martin

Lockheed Martin/Korea Aerospace Industries T-50A is being offered for the T-X competition.  Source: Lockheed Martin

The U.S. Air Force Program Executive Officer for Mobility has delayed issuance of the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the T-X advanced pilot training program by three months.  The program office now expects the RFP to be released in late December 2016.   The postponement follows completion of an internal review regarding the program’s remaining tasks, and is intended to ensure the release of a well-defined RFP. Continue reading

Raytheon Brings Finmeccanica Back into T-X Jet Trainer Fray

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

Two T-100's in formation flight (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)

Two T-100’s in formation flight (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)

Raytheon has officially jumped into the U.S. Air Force’s T-X competition as a prime contractor with its offering of the T-100, an advanced variant of the Aermacchi M-346. Principal partners on the team include Finmeccanica, CAE USA, and Honeywell Aerospace.

The U.S. Air Force Advanced Pilot Training program, also known as the T-X program, aims to replace the aging fleet of T-38 jet trainers currently in service.  The Air Force is planning to acquire 350 aircraft beginning around 2023 or 2024.  Continue reading

T-X: Next Big USAF Aircraft Contest

By Ray Jaworowski, Senior Aerospace Analyst, Forecast International.

US Air Force T-38 Talon Trainer

US Air Force T-38 Talon Trainer

Now that the U.S. Air Force has awarded the Long Range Strike-Bomber (LRS-B) contract to Northrop Grumman, and the inevitable protest of the award has been lodged, the service’s next big aircraft procurement program is the T-X.  The T-X effort involves acquisition of an advanced trainer to replace the Air Force’s fleet of some 447 Northrop T-38C trainers. Continue reading

Northrop Grumman Outlook Strengthens with LRS-B Win

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

Long Range Strike-Bomber Concept. Source: Northrop Grumman

Long Range Strike-Bomber Concept. Source: Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman secured its position as a military aircraft producer when the U.S. Air Force selected it to produce the next-generation Long Range Strike-Bomber.

At a time when sales have been slowly sliding, the program win breathes new life into the country’s fifth largest defense contractor. Prior to this, the company was ably managing the slowdown in defense spending. The firm embarked on a strategy that entailed increasing program performance, aggressively pursuing new business, reducing cost structures, and aligning its portfolio to match customer spending priorities. Continue reading