Defense Business Briefing -- March 2, 2021

Welcome to today's Defense Business Briefing, your weekly roundup of the latest defense industry news.

This week's top story

Reed says securing defense supply chain will be 'major effort' following Biden's executive order

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jack Reed (D-RI) said a new executive order from President Biden to review the U.S. defense industrial base is the start of a "major effort" to secure national supply chains, despite challenges posed by China's key role in the global marketplace.

News & notes

L3Harris to sell military training business to CAE, combat propulsion systems businesses to RENK AG

L3Harris Technologies said it has agreed to sell its military training business to CAE for just under $1.05 billion and its combat propulsion systems and related businesses to German company RENK AG for $400 million.

Leonardo DRS files proposed initial public offering

Leonardo said its U.S. subsidiary DRS has filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of a minority stake of its common shares.

TransDigm to sell ScioTeq and TREALITY Simulation Visual Systems businesses

TransDigm Group said it has agreed to sell its ScioTeq and TREALITY Simulation Visual Systems businesses to private-equity firm OpenGate Capital in a deal worth about $200 million.

Associations call for Section 3610 extension

Nearly a dozen associations are calling on congressional leaders to extend Section 3610, a provision in COVID-19 relief legislation that allowed reimbursement for contractors who keep their employees in a "ready state."

Kratos CEO hints at large acquisition opportunities

The chief executive of Kratos Defense & Security Solutions said the company is weighing large potential acquisitions.

Maxar CEO says company is seeking diversified sales in space infrastructure unit

Maxar Technologies' chief executive said the company has made changes in its space infrastructure business as it pursues "a firm foundation for growth."

AeroVironment acquires Progeny Systems’ intelligent systems group

AeroVironment said it has acquired the intelligent systems group of Progeny Systems, which develops artificial intelligence-enabled computer vision, machine learning and perceptive autonomy technologies.

Leidos executive says contractor will incorporate maritime business into Gibbs & Cox

The head of Leidos' defense group said Gibbs & Cox, which Leidos has agreed to acquire, will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary.

Appointments & promotions

Austal USA president resigns following investigation into LCS program

Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle has resigned following an investigation into the company's Littoral Combat Ship program, Austal announced.

Deloitte picks Coykendall to lead aerospace and defense sector

Deloitte said it has named John Coykendall principal at Deloitte Consulting and the leader of its global aerospace and defense sector.

BAE promotes Hand

BAE Systems said it has appointed Lisa Hand vice president and general manager of the company's integrated defense solutions business.

ManTech hires Cubba

ManTech International said it has named Joseph Cubba chief growth officer.

Altamira Technologies taps former Raytheon executive to serve as CEO

Altamira Technologies said it has named Jane Chappell chief executive officer.

SAIC hires Scruggs

Science Applications International Corp. said it has named Michael Scruggs senior vice president of artificial intelligence, effective immediately.

What's happening

The week ahead

Senior government officials and defense company executives are scheduled to discuss an array of issues this week, while lawmakers hold a hearing to consider a key Pentagon nominee.

For Inside Defense subscribers

DOD security agency uncovers 'clearance issues' with some Capitol rioters, including contractor employees

The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency's new "continuous vetting" system has flagged "clearance issues" among multiple Capitol rioters, including some working in the defense industrial base, according to the head of the agency.

DOD still looking for $11B supplemental to cover defense contractors' pandemic costs

The Defense Department needs about $11 billion in supplemental funding from Congress to support defense contractors with pandemic-related costs or else modernization programs and military readiness accounts will be raided, according to two senior Pentagon officials.

Hyten: COVID exposed 'weak' defense supply chains, risk to U.S. military technological primacy

The COVID pandemic has revealed the U.S. defense industrial base to be "not healthy" and hampered by "weak" supply chains that threaten the ability of the nation to nimbly develop and field new capabilities to keep ahead of technological advances by other nations, according to the Pentagon's No. 2 military official.