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Agustawestland, Lockheed Martin Announce Alliance to Produce Medium-Lift Helicopters for U.S. Market
US101 Helicopter Will Be Made in the USA
PRNewswire
WASHINGTON

Officials from Lockheed Martin and AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica and GKN company, announced today they are initiating a joint effort focusing on the U.S. government medium-lift helicopter market with immediate attention toward combat search and rescue opportunities with the U.S. Air Force.

According to the agreement, AgustaWestland and Lockheed Martin will jointly bring the US101 aircraft -- an American version of AgustaWestland's extremely versatile and mission-proven EH101 helicopter -- to the U.S. market. The most technologically advanced helicopter of its class in production today, the three-engine EH101 has been ordered by United Kingdom, Canada, Italy, Denmark and Japan.

"For us, the agreement supports our company's goal to become the world's leading helicopter systems supplier," said Giuseppe Orsi, AgustaWestland's Sales and Marketing director. "Teaming AgustaWestland, the second largest helicopter producer in the world, with Lockheed Martin, which has extensive experience in helicopter integration, will deliver low-risk, best-value solutions to U.S. customer requirements."

"We're extremely proud to be the prime U.S. contractor in this critical venture," said Frank C. Meyer, president of Lockheed Martin Systems Integration - Owego, the New York-based Lockheed Martin business segment working with AgustaWestland. "This helicopter is robust, proven and highly reliable. Bringing it to our military market is the right solution to replace aging aircraft, such as the U.S. Air Force's combat search and rescue fleets."

This U.S. agreement builds on more than 10 years of successful teamwork in the United Kingdom for Lockheed Martin and AgustaWestland on the Merlin HM Mk1, a maritime version of the EH101. During successful mission system trials in 2000, the system was described as "awesome" by its customer.

"Immediate plans include establishing core teams from both companies to launch joint marketing campaigns directed toward military markets such as the U.S. Air Force's Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) effort," Orsi said. "Other government agencies needing a helicopter with the range and payload capabilities of the US101 are being explored."

The Lockheed Martin effort with AgustaWestland will be led by Stephen D. Ramsey, vice president for Aerospace Systems. "By working with Lockheed Martin, this agreement opens new markets in the United States for AgustaWestland, but more importantly it gives our country a proven, state of the art, all-weather medium-lift helicopter that is manufactured in the United States," Ramsey emphasized. "This is as important for our country as it is for our companies."

AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica and GKN Company with primary operations in Cascina Costa, Italy, and Yeovil, United Kingdom, is a commercial enterprise, offering an unrivaled range of products designed to satisfy the most diverse requirements of civil and military customers. Committed to delivering outstanding products and services, AgustaWestland is capable of supporting wide-ranging missions in globally competitive markets. The American market is managed through AgustaWestland Inc., in Arlington, Va., the U.S. subsidiary of AgustaWestland. Stephen C. Moss, president of AgustaWestland Inc., is responsible for the US101 program.

Lockheed Martin Systems Integration -- Owego is a leader in providing advanced technology products, services and systems integration solutions for defense, civil and commercial customers worldwide. Systems Integration -- Owego employs more than 4,200 persons at facilities in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom and is a business segment of Lockheed Martin Corporation with headquarters in Bethesda, Md. Lockheed Martin is a global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced-technology systems, products and services. The Corporation's core businesses are systems integration, space, aeronautics, technology services and global telecommunications.

For additional information on Lockheed Martin Systems Integration-Owego visit: http://www.lmowego.com/

For additional information on AgustaWestland visit: http://www.agustawestlandinc.com/

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SOURCE: Lockheed Martin and AgustaWestland Inc.

Contact: Media - Jan Gottfredsen of Lockheed Martin Systems Integration
- Owego, +1-607-751-2598, janet.gottfredsen@lmco.com, or Angelica Falchi of
AgustaWestland, +1-703-243-7733, x207; e-mail, afalchi@agustawestlandinc.com