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Lockheed acquires Amor group as part of global expansion plan

Chief Executive Officer and President of Lockheed Martin Corporation Marillyn A. Hewson speaks at a news conference in London, July 1, 2013.
Chief Executive Officer and President of Lockheed Martin Corporation Marillyn A. Hewson speaks at a news conference in London, July 1, 2013.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Lockheed Martin Corp on Wednesday announced the acquisition of Scotland-based Amor Group, a privately held information technology company, saying the deal would aid its plans to expand internationally and into non-defense markets.

Lockheed did not disclose the terms of the acquisition, but said it was not material to the company.

"The strategic acquisition of Amor Group is aligned with our strategy for Lockheed Martin International and expands our capabilities and expertise in international information technology, civil government services and the energy market," Lockheed Chief Executive Marillyn Hewson said in a statement.

Lockheed said Amor Group, which has more than 500 employees across seven facilities in the U.K., would help it expand in key adjacent business areas such as energy, government health care and airport operations.

Lockheed and other big arms makers are looking to increase international sales and move into adjacent business areas to help offset expected declines in U.S. military spending.

Unless Congress acts to reverse mandatory budget cuts, the Pentagon must cut its projected spending by $500 billion over the next decade, on top of $487 billion in cuts that were already planned for roughly the same period.

For instance, combining Amor's airport operations business, which is in use at more than 75 airports worldwide, with Lockheed air traffic solutions business would create a larger and more effective business, said Lockheed spokeswoman Jennifer Allen.

Amor's systems manage more than 3 million aircraft movements and track 700 million, work that complements Lockheed's work with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and several global customers, the company said.

Allen said Lockheed would also benefit from Amor's work in the North Sea oil and gas industry for the past 20 years.

Loren Thompson, a Virginia-based defense consultant, said the deal made sense given Lockheed's drive to push into commercial aircraft services and other non-military markets.

"This acquisition hits all the key priorities for the company for growing its information services business," he said. "It's commercial, it's overseas, and it's growth markets."

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Chris Reese)

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