Pentagon’s No.1 weapons supplier Lockheed Martin Corp. says it has terminated its agreement to acquire rocket engine and missile maker Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings, Inc..
Lockheed Martin says the decision to terminate the agreement follows the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) lawsuit filed late last month seeking a preliminary injunction to block the acquisition.
“Our planned acquisition of Aerojet Rocketdyne would have benefitted the entire industry through greater efficiency, speed, and significant cost reductions for the U.S. government,” said Lockheed Martin Chairman, President and CEO James Taiclet. “However, we determined that in light of the FTC’s actions, terminating the transaction is in the best interest of our stakeholders. We stand by our long heritage as a merchant supplier and trusted partner and will continue to support Aerojet Rocketdyne and other essential suppliers in the Defense Industrial Base still overcoming the challenges of the pandemic.
“Moving forward, we will maintain our focus on the most effective use of capital with the highest return on investment, including our ongoing commitment to return value to shareholders. We remain confident in our company’s strong foundation and growth potential as several exciting projects enter production.
“Finally, I’m proud of the 114,000 patriotic men and women of Lockheed Martin. They have a principled commitment to deliver the highest quality and most effective solutions to our customers. We will continue to support the United States and its allies through our industry leadership and developing the technologies to ensure effective threat deterrence for decades to come.”
Aerojet earned about $2 billion in 2019 and employs almost 5,000 workers. The company builds the RS-25 engines that will be used in NASA’s Space Launch System rocket, which is designed to return astronauts to the moon, possibly as soon as 2024.