Thales Gains Back Market Share with New Radio Contract

by Greg Giaquinto, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Thales AN/PRC-14 8 C
IMBITR radio. Source: Thales

Thales has been awarded a $37 million contract from the U.S. Army to equip the new rapidly deployable security force assistance brigades (SFABs) with the PRC-148C Improved Multiband Inter-Intra Team Radio (IMBITR), establishing it as the first dual-channel, certified networking radio to enhance communications at the tactical edge, providing interoperability for joint and coalition forces.

According to Thales, the solution delivers cutting-edge tactical communications that address the Army’s network modernization initiatives and provides soldiers with the tactical advantage necessary to achieve mission success in both dismounted and mounted vehicular configurations. Through a high-throughput networking waveform, the IMBITR provides Special Operations-equivalent equipment suitable for demanding expeditionary environments, a capability sought by the Army.

The core mission of the SFABs is to provide a cross-functional advisory capability in support of theater security cooperation activities and build partner capacity worldwide, allowing quick response to the requirements of theater combatant commanders.

This award is a major win for Thales Defense & Security Inc.  The PRC-148’s major competitor is Harris Corp’s PRC-152.  Under the now defunct Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) program, Harris had a slight upper hand over Thales when competing for handheld radio contracts.  When the JTRS program was canceled, the PRC-152 still held a marked advantage. With the introduction of the PRC-148C, Thales Defense & Security has the potential to take back some of the market share it lost to the PRC-152.


As a senior analyst on Forecast International’s Military Electronics Systems series, Greg provides strategic counsel and services to clients regarding the defense communications and computer technology businesses. Regarded as an industry authority, Greg has served as a moderator for a discussion panel of corporate executives at the annual Military Communications Conference in Washington, DC.  Greg is widely recognized for his strong relationship with the media, and his commentary on the defense technology industry is cited frequently in publications that include Investor’s Business Daily and Bloomberg News.


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