Elbit Systems has completed its purchase of El-Op Electro-Optics Industries, creating Israel's largest private defence company. El-Op will operate as a subsidiary of Elbit, which adopted a new organisational structure on 5 July, when the merger went through.

El-Op manufactures electro-optical products for the military and civil markets, offering aerospace applications in thermal imaging, lasers and optical systems (for spy satellites and airborne reconnaissance).

Elbit is engaged in a wide range of defence-related airborne, ground and C3 programmes. Fighter and helicopter upgrades are a core competency (including the Northrop F-5 in Singapore as prime contractor, and with IAI in Turkey, and of the Mikoyan MiG-21 in Romania), and will become the pair's main business focus.

El-Op recorded sales of $303 million last year and made a net profit of $14.6 million, with a year-end order backlog of $558 million. Elbit sales were $436 million, with a $31 million net gain and a $736 million backlog.

The pair will combine their results from the third quarter.

Source: Flight International