Mark Cherry, named to lead Boeing's Phantom Works unit last year, has reorganized the advanced technology group in an effort to have "more focused integration" with the other parts of the contractor's defense business, he told Inside Defense.
In an interview earlier this week, Cherry said there had been informal embedding of Phantom Works staff in areas of the defense business, but there's now been a "more formal change." He now has employees embedded in key groups, from vertical lift to fixed wing to autonomy.
"I wanted to ensure that my teammates knew who the belly button is that they can go to," he said. "We just formalized it more."
Cherry said Leanne Caret, the head of Boeing's defense business, had directed him to ensure Phantom Works supports the entire unit's portfolio and to position it for key wins of franchise opportunities, including the Navy's MQ-25 Stingray remotely piloted aircraft.
He said Phantom Works must focus both on making sure the business sees returns in the near-term as well as longer-term technological needs.
Additionally, Cherry said his organization is working closely with HorizonX, Boeing's innovation cell.
"As they look at opportunities to make minority investments . . . we look at how we can partner with those companies," he said.