Skip to comments.Sikorsky targets buyout of Polish aircraft maker (Black Hawks will be produced in Poland)
Posted on 09/20/2006 3:55:29 PM PDT by lizol
UPDATE 1-Sikorsky targets buyout of Polish aircraft maker
Wed Sep 20, 2006 11:27am ET
By Ewa Krukowska
WARSAW, Sept 20 (Reuters) - U.S. aircraft maker Sikorsky on Wednesday announced plans to set up a Polish assembly plant for its Black Hawk helicopters with a view eventually to buying out state-owned Polish firm PZL Mielec.
Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. President Jeffrey Pino said the company, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (UTX.N: Quote, Profile, Research), was considering a "substantial" deal to buy Mielec, but declined to give details.
Under a preliminary memorandum signed on Wednesday, Sikorsky will fund Mielec's investment in the assembly of the international version of its Black Hawk helicopter and produce other components.
It said it hoped to finalise the agreement by the end of the year.
"We are here for strategic partnership at some level with the ultimate goal ... a full acquisition," Pino told reporters at a news conference on the signing of the preliminary deal.
In July, Sikorsky announced plans to develop an International Black Hawk helicopter which is a variant for global customers that would be built with a global supply chain and delivered from outside the United States.
The investment in PZL Mielec, Poland's biggest aircraft maker with a workforce of 1,500, would provide funding for factory improvements and tooling to support assembly of the Black Hawk and other helicopter component production.
The agreement signed on Wednesday assumes initial component deliveries to start in 2008 and international Black Hawk deliveries to begin in 2010.
"The assumption is that we have to make a pretty good deal for the government to want to sell Mielec. Until the deal is completed, we will keep the details quiet but it is a very substantial and fundamental deal," Pino said.
"Employment is more difficult to discuss but my belief is that we cannot only maintain the current level of employment but indeed grow it," he added.
United Technologies currently employs more than 7,000 people in aerospace and construction in Poland, where a number of aerospace companies have invested to take advantage of cheap costs of production and design engineers.
Poland has been a great help to us in the WOT if this helps them im happy for them.
I am not wild about military vehicle being built outside of the US, but if it is going to happen Poland is one of the few countries I would trust. They have stood by the US in the WOT and I respect the hell out of them for that.
The outsourcing of jobs is really starting in full swing. First it was the Info Tech dudes "like me". Now it is BPO, Back Office Processing", Engineering, and Manufacturing. Look at Ford and GM. Do you really think that they will be manufacturing here in the US in the next 2 to 3 years?
EUROX......eastern europe is where the money will be made.
Maybe not. But Honda, Toyota, BMW, and Daimler-Benz certainly will be.
For those unfamiliar with him, he is the current Polish Minister of Nat'l Defense and former head of the New Atlantic Initiative at AEI, and also happens to be married to journalist Anne Applebaum.
I'm not particularly worried about the Blackhawk transport chopper's tech - it's pretty old technology, and the Polish had equal or better versions of all the sensitive technology years ago (thanks to the old Soviet bloc tech transfer).
Even our "Black Hole" exhaust IR suppression system has had equivalents available on the open market for a while, so that's not exactly sensitive tech these days.
And if it gives our Polish allies an edge over their adversaries in the region, so much the better. Especially if it ticks off the Germans (the UH-60 series is a much better bird than the Germans' NH-90, and is battle tested - unlike the NH-90).
The UH-60 (even the L model) isn't significantly advanced enough to worry about. Polish nationals will assemble the airframe and install the engines, but the avionics will remain US produced. The real goodies are in the SOF and SAR models.
Poland is going to spend HUNDREDS of MILLIONS on the Blackhawk. It's only fair that they get some financial benefit from this, as well.
Even the F-16 has been assembled in a myriad of "partner" countries. Either that, or they find another aircraft manufacturer who's willing to invest in their economy. Only makes sense.
Dear Germany..... Suck it! I have been reading over and over Poland receiving this kind of industry... Good for them!