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Leonardo to buy a quarter stake in Hensoldt

28th April 2021 - 10:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Hensoldt and Leonardo already cooperate on programmes such as Eurofighter Typhoon. (Photo: Leonardo)

Leonardo aims to establish a strategic long-term presence in the German defence market.

Leonardo is set to become the largest single private shareholder in German EO and sensor specialist Hensoldt, having agreed on 26 April to acquire a 25.1% stake in the company from US private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts.

The German government also owns 25.1% of Hensoldt under a March 2021 agreement.

Leonardo also recently announced the acquisition of a 30% stake in Italian naval sensor company GEM elettronica.

Leonardo is paying €606 million for the Hensoldt stake and the transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2021, pending the usual regulatory approvals. CEO Alessandro Profumo described the deal as the ‘catalyst for the establishment of closer cooperation that will further enhance our respective positions in the growing defence electronics market’.

Hensoldt CEO Thomas Müller noted that the two companies already cooperate on several programmes; examples include Eurofighter Typhoon, where Hensoldt and Leonardo are independent operators within the consortium model.

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