Major British aerospace company sold to America

Caption: Both Ascension and Falkland Islands stamps honour the Black Buck Raids

ALTHOUGH the Americans have not yet struck a deal to take over the NHS, a US private equity firm was at 10pm last Friday, given UK government approval to take over one of Britain’s most important aerospace defence companies.

A bid of £4 billion (€4.6 billion) was made in July and was accepted by shareholders in the company, Cobham, but in September the British government decided to block the takeover citing national security concerns.

Since then a review of the bid and the affect that it would have on Britain’s security has been completed and now the green light for the takeover has been given.

The company, which employs some 10,000 people undertakes a great deal of work for the British military and is a world leader in air to air refuelling which has become an important option for air forces around the world.

Indeed it was in part thanks to this development that Britain was able to retake the Falkland Islands in 1982 as Vulcan Bombers flew on the longest bombing raid ever at that time, setting off from the UK to Ascension Island and then to the Falklands to bomb Port Stanley Airfield with regular in air refuelling during the flights.

Other projects undertaken by Cobham include electronic warfare systems and communications for military vehicles.

Now that Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom has confirmed she is satisfied that the risks that had been identified had been mitigated “to an acceptable level” the sale can go ahead but has been criticised by a member of the founding family.

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Written by

John Smith

Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica. Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene. Share your story with us by emailing [email protected], by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page


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