Mike Martin

Europe's newest electronics company should get the final go-ahead at the end of the year or early 1999.

Alenia Marconi Systems is now waiting for the results of independent valuation of the Italian assets which will form half of the new venture.

The company, a 50-50 joint venture between the UK's Marconi and Alenia Difesa, has the go-ahead from the two governments and from the European Union.

The management team, under chief executive Peter Brown, currently managing director of Marconi's Radar and Defence Systems, is meeting regularly to plan future strategy.

Richard Rozak, group marketing director for Marconi Radar and Defence Systems, said at the show yesterday: "We expect to launch the company as soon as we get clearance."

The new company is split roughly 80-20 in favour of defence products covering radar systems, simulation and training, command information systems and missiles. The civil air traffic control side is a good fit, says Rozak.

"The civil radar technology takes a lot of feed from the defence side so it makes a lot of sense," he said.

The new company will have eight sites in the UK and five in Italy. The management team will rotate each week between the twin headquarters of Rome and Chelmsford. "We see that as a good way to really force the integration," he said.

The team has been trialling new telecommunications technology which will enable calls and data to follow users wherever they are.

Source: Flight Daily News