Lockheed wins $1.4B F-35 logistics services contract

By Lee Hudson / April 30, 2018 at 5:31 PM

The Pentagon today awarded Lockheed Martin a roughly $1.4 billion cost-plus-incentive-fee contract for F-35 Joint Strike Fighter logistics services.

Lockheed Martin will provide recurring logistics services for the Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, international partners and foreign military sales participants, according to the contract announcement. Services include ground maintenance; action request resolution; depot activation activities; Autonomic Logistics Information System operations and maintenance; reliability, maintainability and health management implementation and support; supply chain management; and pilot and maintainer initial training.

Last week, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told Congress that Lockheed Martin was failing to live up to the Pentagon's expectations regarding JSF.

"The F-35 aircraft is performing well, but the contractor is not delivering the affordability that keeps solvency and security as our guideposts," he said in written comments submitted to the House Appropriations defense subcommittee and the Senate Armed Services Committee.

"We are working with the contractor to reduce the costs associated with purchasing and sustaining the F-35," Mattis continued, adding that DOD will "evaluate the performance of both F-35s and F/A-18s to determine the most appropriate mix of aircraft as we move forward."

Bridget Lauderdale, Lockheed's vice president of F-35 global sustainment, said in an April 30 statement that the company is "taking aggressive actions to improve F-35 aircraft availability and reduce sustainment costs. As the sustainment system matures and the size of the operational fleet grows, we are confident we will deliver more capability at less cost than legacy aircraft."

The Lockheed statement listed three actions the company is taking to reduce costs:

* "Expanding the networked global supply chain to improve component repair capacity, throughput and velocity.

* "Investing in enhanced diagnostics and data analytics to improve flight line readiness and drive down costs.

* "Pre-funding spares buys and synchronizing production and sustainment component orders to achieve volume cost reductions and improve parts availability."