Military AircrewA forum for the professionals who fly the non-civilian hardware, and the backroom boys and girls without whom nothing would leave the ground. Army, Navy and Airforces of the World, all equally welcome here.
BAES has stabbed this country in the back. Its about time the Cheese eating surrender monkeys and Goose stepping sausage gobblers had a taiste of British Steel. Except British steel went tits up, but you know what I mean. Get in there BAES, take them to the cleaners!!
Last edited by Bannock; 12th Sep 2012 at 18:19.
Reason: spooling mistook
I feel very uneasy about this proposal. I'm sure many will feel the same. I feel nostalgic for the days when we had a proper aircraft industry and many talented companies. Now we have a monopoly that is joining up with (or being subsumed into) an even larger one.
Before we even get to competition issues, I think ORAC has highlighted a very valid and very realisitic hurdle that must be overcome - especially given BAE Systems' large presence and reliance on the US markets - how much of a hinderance will ITAR be here?
But even assuming the various security regulations are circumvented, a very cursory quick look suggests that BAE and EADS coming together would have significant influence in a number of platforms, including but not limited to Typhoon, Rafale, Mirage 2000, Eurocopter, ATR and Airbus Military. I can see the competition lawyers rubbing their hands in glee already.
Plus from a financial perspective, what is the rationale here? It will allow BAE to diversify away from a purely military perspective, moving into the civil and space arenas (oh good, something else for them to cock up) whilst giving EADS access to the US markets. I might be wrong, but the enhanced synergistic effects of a merger were the primary reasons touted for Glencore and Xastra's coming together; that very quickly moved from being a synergistic coming together of partners to a potential hostile takeover. I can see a similar thing happening here, and the British government keen to put a dent in the deficit giving serious consideration to anything that will help out with the balance sheet. This will be nothign other than a long drawn out process that will deliver nothing but profits for the lawyers and longer term, put BAE at risk of being subject to a hostile takeover by the French and German govt dominated EADS.
Last edited by Melchett01; 12th Sep 2012 at 21:56.
iRaven, Your innocence of the job market is showing. In none of these mergers does any rubbish dissappear - it just changes ID cards, logo's, badges. The best you can hope for is that something fresh will come along and you won't notice how rubbish it is for some time.
BAES get "rodded" with ITAR already. Don't forget that less than 20% of their workforce are British or work in Britain - don't be fooled by the "B" in their company title. There are lots of divisions within the company that cannot talk to other divisions within the same company because of ITAR! So I would not see ITAR as making anything worse should they merge with EADS.
Yes, there are some programs on the table that are very similar and so it would be wise to think that EADS/BAES programs would be rationalised. However, go-it-alone programs for BAES are finished - Harrier GR(done), Sea Harrier (done), Tornado F3 (done), Nimrod (done) and Hawk (almost done). Typhoon, Tornado and F35 don't need Warton as we can get them and support from one of the other collaberative partners (ie. EADS or LM). So with nothing likely on the books, UK MoD skint (thanks to raping of funds and supply of inferior equipment by the very same company) and a global cash crisis, I am not surprised at all. I see this as the only way that the aircraft manufacturing arm of BAES can survive - it looks to me the final death throws of a once great industry, let down by greed, poor politics, underperformance in delivery and poor contract writing (the latter by the MoD).
As some have said already, if this is the end then good riddance. Let's throw investment at our automotive industry that seems to be doing very well and giving great global export sales (Jaguar, LandRover, Mini, Triumph Motorcycles, Lotus...to name a few). Who knows, many of the UK's automotive names died, or nearly died, in the 70s and then bounced back with investment - wouldn't it be great to see Vickers, Avro, DeHavilland, Hawker, etc... bounce back in the future, like Supermarine has done with the Mk 26 Spitfire with an Australian entrepreneur? How about a restart of one of the famous names to build a Grob Tutor replacement, that could also be sold in the GA market as a British success like our new motorbikes and cars?
Hi Mr B Word: How can you associate the Supermarine Spitfire with that terrible Mk 26 Spitfire? They are not comparable.
As for how to replace the "Little White Grub"? Put the Chipmunk back into production. The design data has already been extracted from the clutches of BAES and with investment in new jigging and tooling, and a modern engine, off we jolly well go.
Ah the Chipmunk that wonderful result of a Polish designer working for a Canadian company and using an engine that could trace its history back to a pile of Great War surplus Renault engine spares. British industry at its best.
So what will the RAF do now? It has transferred virtually all control of its maintenance facilities to BAE. So how will it reconcile strategic decisions being taken by a foreign company over which it has no control. You could not make it up. The RAF transferred much of its capability to a company which specialises in cutting the wings off vintage aircraft to try and glue ill-fitting replacements on them, and periodically selling re-polished turds back to the MOD. That company is now about to pass into the control of a foreign company which is heavily backed by respective governments, who don't always hold the well-being of GB to their hearts. Mind you, if I worked for EADS I would be afraid, very afraid. I can imagine the conversation now. "Right boys we're just taking this Lancaster bomb aimers sight, nailing a sewing machine motor on it, and using it as the new freight door operating mechanism for the A380". "What, you want drawings"? "What happened to the last park drive packet I gave you? "All the info was on that".
Location: Quite near 'An aerodrome somewhere in England'
The quaintness of some of 't Bungling Baron's folk was always amusing...
At one VC10/TriStar JTIDS design meeting, both Marshall Aerospace (for the TriStar) and BWoS (for the VC10) gave quick installation presentations.
The MA chap was in a smart suit and delivered a very slick talk; his slides looked straight out of the Aircrew Manual, but with the new display and control panel already incorporated. Most impressive.
Then came the BWoS chap. He looked like some mad old professor, with a shirt whose frayed collar was already displaying an impressive dihedral angle. It wouldn't have surprised me if he had slide rule in his top pocket. His slides looked like yellowing parchment drawings of 'Ye Olde Vickerf Funbuf' with some items hastily added in crayon.... He then told us that the drawings had suffered a bit because the design office roof leaked.....
Amazing isn't it, one little sniff of something BAE related and all the old antagonism comes wriggling out into the light.
How about looking to the future and cogitate on how what is left of a UK based defence industry is going to survive, rather than grumbling about what might have been had things been done if you'd had your way....
The problem comes with stuff like the JSF, I am sure the Americans will love their secrets in the technology involved falling into Frances hands, one of their main competitors in the field, additionally, the American technology in the weapon systems used on our Nuclear submarines will then be shared again with Europe in a merger, something again I would think the US wouldn't be best pleased with. In fact I wouldn't think UK PLC would be please either as you would be handing over our secret submarine technology to Europe.
The US Govt are already saying they have yet to be consulted on the deal - doesn't take a reading age much above that of a 5 year old to work out what they are saying there. Plus the Spanish govt also have a minor stake in this and have yet to agree to it.
Plus the fund managers and banks are also now starting to realise just how many hurdles there are to this and the respective share prices have already dropped. It might be a good idea on paper, but I just can't see it happening.
But then again, over the years, we have sold off so much of our strategic infrastucture - airports, power generation, utility companies etc etc etc to the highest bidder, I very much doubt that Cameron et al will bat an eyelid at the thought of letting the final vestige of the UK defence industry slip into foreign control. If / when this deal does go tits up, it will be because investors realise it's a bad deal not because of strategic concerns.