Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., a unit of
United Technologies Corp.
), bagged a $1.24 billion worth contract from the U.S. Navy to
develop and build the new U.S. presidential helicopter fleet. The
new choppers will replace the Marine One copters, also built by
Sikorsky, that presently ferry the U.S. president and executive
The Pentagon has been attempting to replace the said fleet for
years. A previous program led by
Lockheed Martin Corp.
) was terminated by former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, owing to
significant cost overruns and failure to meet scheduled delivery
deadlines, as well as unrealistic and inconsistent criteria on the
part of the Pentagon.
Under the deal, Sikorsky will build 6 new choppers as the first
stride towards Pentagon's intended fleet of 21 new helicopters by
The contract has a fixed-price-plus-incentive structure, wherein a
cost ceiling is set, with additional rewards for beating cost
targets. Per the contract, Sikorsky will build, test and deliver 6
S-92 helicopters as certified by the Federal Aviation
Administration, along with 2 trainer simulators to the U.S. Marine
The U.S. Navy will order 17 production aircraft in 3 phases, the
first of which is expected to commence in early 2019. Sikorsky
aspires to deliver these aircraft by 2023.
According to media reports, Sikorsky will spearhead a team
comprising of Lockheed Martin,
Rockwell Collins Inc.
Honeywell International Inc.
), United Technologies Aerospace Systems and L-3 Communications
Holdings, for the execution of the helicopter contract.
General Electric Co.
) will reportedly supply engines for the aircraft, while Lockheed
will act as the key subcontractor to Sikorsky. The Naval Air
Systems Command will manage the project.
Sikorsky, a global pioneer in designing, manufacturing and
servicing helicopters, is Pentagon's leading helicopter supplier.
Its S-92 platform is the most advanced in its civil line and
adheres to the most stringent safety requirements. Its advanced
health and usage monitoring system facilitates cutting-edge fleet
Presently, the dual-engine, medium-lift S-92 helicopter is employed
by ten nations to fly their heads of state. In the last decade,
Sikorsky had delivered over 200 S-92 helicopters, with a majority
of them serving the global offshore oil and gas industry, and civil
search and rescue operations.
United Technologies currently holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
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