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Oct. 14, 2015, 12:22 PM
- Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) likely will face competition from the likes of Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) for billions of dollars in contracts to build as many as 22 improved GPS satellites, Bloomberg reports, quoting a top U.S. Air Force procurement official.
- The Pentagon approved an Air Force proposal for competition in part because LMT fell behind in completing the first of as many as eight of the GPS III satellites under a contract it won in 2008.
- LMT is 28 months late in delivering the first satellite because of flaws in the satellite’s navigation payload system, produced by a subcontractor, that the company and the military say are now corrected.
Oct. 12, 2015, 10:23 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NOC +0.2%) has been awarded a $58.7M contract from the Marine Corps to develop the Ground Weapon Locating Radar mode for the AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task-Oriented Radar.
- The mode is a software update that brings additional mission capability to the DoD's ground-based multi-mission Active Electronically Scanned Array.
Oct. 6, 2015, 11:45 AM
- The top weapons buyer for the U.S. Department of Defense says he probably will soon give the Air Force permission to award the contract for the next U.S. long-range bomber because extensive preparations have indicated "we have viable bids."
- The Air Force can proceed only after Frank Kendall, undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics, convenes a Defense Acquisition Board review to assess the readiness to award a contract in the competition that pits Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) against a team of Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT).
- The Long-Range Strike Bomber may cost more $800M a piece in today’s dollars when development costs are included, and a fleet of 100 is planned; the bomber, scheduled for first deployment in the mid-2020s, will be one of the Pentagon’s biggest weapons systems over the next decade.
Sep. 30, 2015, 7:12 PM
- Northrop Grumann (NYSE:NOC) wins a contract worth up to $3.2B for continued development, modernization and maintenance of all U.S. Air Force variants of the Global Hawk unmanned surveillance plane, the Defense Department says.
- The Air Force hopes to carry out upgrades to the Global Hawk before it retires its aging fleet of manned U-2 spy planes.
- It is not yet clear if the contract includes upgrades such as a new electro-optical sensor that a senior U.S. Air Force official had said could cost as little as half the previous estimate of $4B.
Sep. 30, 2015, 6:10 PM
- The U.S. Defense Department does not support large-scale acquisitions that could winnow its prime contractors following Lockheed Martin’s (NYSE:LMT) $9B purchase of Sikorsky (NYSE:UTX), according to comments from DoD Sec. Carter and undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics Frank Kendall.
- Warning that with “size comes power,” Kendall says the Pentagon will work with the Justice Department and Congress to preserve a diverse industrial base.
- The statements come ahead of the contract award for a new long-range bomber, which some analysts say could prompt a tie-up of Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC).
- U.S. defense stocks extended gains after the remarks, led by a 2.4% rally for Raytheon (NYSE:RTN).
- LMT says it disagrees with the comments, saying there is no evidence to support the view that larger defense companies reduce competition or inhibit innovation.
Sep. 29, 2015, 12:45 PM
- Some of the biggest U.S. weapons programs could be disrupted by a stopgap budget measure that caps federal funding at prior-year levels and prevents the launch of new programs and multiyear deals, as time is running out for lawmakers to reach an agreement on next year’s spending before the current federal budget expires on Sept. 30.
- The U.S. Air Force estimates it stands to lose $13B in additional funding from such a stopgap, affecting ~60 programs including the award of a bomber deal for which a team of Boeing (BA +0.1%) and Lockheed Martin (LMT +0.3%) is vying with Northrop Grumman (NOC +0.1%).
- The Air Force wants to protect the Boeing deal, which leaves the company responsible for any costs exceeding $4.9B; Boeing has taken $1.3B in charges because of problems with the KC-46A refueling tanker, which flew for the first time on Sept. 25, and the Air Force wants to avoid a new deal that could expose it to paying for any further glitches.
- A stopgap also could cap next year’s spending on LMT's F-35, the Pentagon’s largest program, at $8.6B vs. the requested $11B, which would cut 19 jets from next year’s planned order and disrupt efforts to cut the jet’s cost by raising annual production to 120 planes over the next three years; the F-35’s suppliers include United Technologies (UTX +0.7%) Pratt & Whitney unit, which makes the engine.
Sep. 24, 2015, 10:23 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NOC -1.8%) has been selected by the U.S. Army to develop Airborne Reconnaissance Low-Enhanced Long-Range Radar.
- The solution will enhance the Army's C4ISR capabilities by combining Gen 2 Vehicle and Dismount and Exploitation Radar back-end electronics and software with Active Electronically Scanned Array technology.
Sep. 22, 2015, 11:51 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NOC -2%) has signed a long-term deal with Norway's Kitron to source subassembly electronic modules for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft, extending its supply chain for the fighter in Europe.
- The deal goes through June 2036 with rights for extensions. The first F-35A Lightning II for Norway is set for a Sept. 22 delivery.
- Norway is one of eight partner nations to the U.S. that invested in development of the F-35.
Sep. 16, 2015, 6:27 PM
- Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) is up 0.8% after hours, after announcing a new repurchase authorization of up to $4B in shares.
- The company may buy back shares in the open market or private transactions from time to time. With a $32B market cap, the company could buy back some 12% of its shares under the new program.
- Previously, the company had said it was on schedule to finish its existing buyback program, for 60M shares, by the end of 2015.
Sep. 15, 2015, 7:15 PM
- Northrop Grumman (NOC +1.5%) said early today that its Sperry Marine unit was selected to supply Integrated Bridge Systems to future frigates serving in the Royal Thai Navy.
- Meanwhile, the company's also gotten a revised B-2 maintenance contract from the Air Force that will help the service save $900M in costs over the fleet's life and make another jet available for combat at any time. It also cuts average maintenance time to 364 days from 400 days.
- And upgrades to Northrop's unmanned Global Hawk surveillance aircraft might cost only half the previous estimate of $4B, an Air Force official says -- a key issue as the Air Force can't budget for two different spyplane platforms.
- Upgrades to the Global Hawk of a new electro-optical sensor and a camera with wider field of view are necessary before the Air Force retires an aging fleet of U-2 spy planes made by Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) -- which itself would like to upgrade the U-2 to keep it operating.
- Northrop shares are up 15.6% YTD.
Sep. 2, 2015, 10:31 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NOC +1.5%) has been selected by the New Zealand Ministry of Defense to provide navigation suite upgrades to the Navy's ANZAC Class Frigates.
- The navigation suites will replace existing MK49 inertial navigation units with fourth-generation MK39s and feature an embedded data distribution system.
Aug. 20, 2015, 5:39 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) declares $0.80/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
- Forward yield 1.82%
- Payable Sept. 16; for shareholders of record Aug. 31; ex-div Aug. 27.
Aug. 13, 2015, 8:48 AM
- According to Goldman Sachs, Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) is the favorite in line to win a $55B Defense Department contract to build 80-100 long-range bombers.
- The firm thinks Northrop has the edge over competing bids because it builds the current B-2 bomber, and could send the stock soaring.
- A decision for the award is expected by September.
Jul. 29, 2015, 8:49 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC) raises its earnings guidance for FY 2015 as it reports higher than expected Q2 earnings despite flat or lower revenues in each of its four business sectors.
- NOC now sees FY 2015 EPS of $9.55-$9.70 from its prior outlook for $9.40-$9.70, in line with $9.62 analyst consensus estimate, while reaffirming full-year revenues of $23.4B-$23.8B vs. $23.76B consensus.
- In Q2, sales in the aerospace systems segment - NOC's largest, accounting for more than 40% of total revenue - edged up slightly to $2.51B driven by higher volume for unmanned programs.
- Q2 sales in NOC's electronic systems business, which sells space sensors and marine systems, fell 3.5% to $1.68B, while revenue from information systems slipped 4.9% to $1.49B due mostly to declines in command-and-control programs and the impact of in-theater force reductions; sales in the technical services business fell 1.6%.
Jul. 29, 2015, 7:02 AM
- Northrop Grumman (NYSE:NOC): Q2 EPS of $2.47 beats by $0.11.
- Revenue of $5.89B (-2.5% Y/Y) misses by $40M.
Jul. 28, 2015, 5:30 PM
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