Overseas candidates competing for a possible 30% stake in newly formed Korean Aerospace Industries (KAI) have submitted their bids, with the UK's BAE Systems and US giant Lockheed Martin - in partnership with Aerospatiale Matra - leading the way.

The applications to become KAI's foreign direct investor were submitted to its financial adviser, Deutsche Bank, and were scheduled to be evaluated by the end of 1999.

DaimlerChrysler Aerospace (Dasa) was thought to be planning to bid before its decision to team up with Aerospatiale Matra in European Aeronautic, Defense and Space (EADS), but has not submitted a proposal.

The German company says its withdrawal relates to concerns about the number of international partnerships it is now pursuing, rather than its ties with Aerospatiale Matra.

KAI - comprising the aerospace divisions of Samsung, Hyundai and Daewoo is understood to be close to official formation.

Controversy was triggered recently when it was revealed that BAE Systems had simultaneously been in negotiations to acquire a controlling stake in Hyundai Space & Aircraft (Flight International, 8-14 December).

Source: Flight International