US speciality components manufacturer Pacific Aerospace and Electronics (PA&E) has offered its European Aerospace division for sale in a bid to reduce its debts. PA&E says the operation, which trades as Aeromet International, is non-core. It had sales of $57 million in its last financial year. Smiths Industries of the UK has completed its purchase of the Fairchild Defense Electronics subsidiary of Orbital Sciences for around $100 million. Orbital acquired the business when it bought Fairchild Space and Defense in 1994, and has retained the space operation. International Rectifier of California is to buy Lambda Advanced Analog and Magnitude-3, two suppliers of power management systems for satellites, launchers and commercial and military aircraft, for a total of $24 million. The pair have combined sales of $28 million. Canadian Aviation of Calgary is to buy Ontario-based general aviation website and incorporate it in its yet-to-be-launched portal. Northrop Grumman has completed its acquisition of Sterling Software's Federal Systems division for $150 million. The Virginia-based business, which had sales of $159 million last year, provides IT services to agencies including NASA, the USAF and FAA, and will extend the air traffic control, information warfare, satellite data collection and defence information infrastructure operations of Northrop's Logicon subsidiary. The European Commission has approved US aluminium giant Alcoa's purchase of British Aluminium, giving it improved aerospace capabilities via the UK company's Aluminium Supply Aerospace division. Microsoft chairman Bill Gates has taken a 5.3% stake in Alaska Air Group, parent of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air, filings have revealed. The Seattle-based carrier's stock has dropped since the January crash of a McDonnell Douglas MD-80, but rallied on the disclosure.

Source: Flight International