$200M defense contract awarded
AeroVironment Inc., the maker of small unmanned spyplanes used by the U.S. military, won a contract valued at as much as $200 million to provide aircraft to the U.S. Special Operations Command.
Work on the order will be done in Simi Valley, the U.S. Defense Department said in a July 1 statement. The statement didn’t identify what aircraft will be supplied, and Mark Boyer, a spokesman for the Monrovia-based company, didn’t return a call. The contract is for one year, with options for four more years.
AeroVironment has benefited as the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan lift demand for portable drones, some as light as 1 pound, that can provide an aerial view of battlefields. Chief Executive Officer Tim Conver told Bloomberg News in an interview the company aims to increase sales by as much as 25 percent annually at least through 2011. Total revenue was $215.8 million last year.
The initial order under the new contract covers 10 aircraft, with related spare parts and training, for a value of $6 million, according to a statement posted on the U.S. Government’s Federal Business Opportunities Web site.