AAI Corp., will split into three businesses under parent company Textron Systems, including a separate business for unmanned aerial vehicles, the company says.

AAI is known for its family of small UAVs, including the RQ-7 Shadow and the Aerosonde.

The three new businesses will be AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems, AAI Test and Training and AAI Logistics and Technical Services. The operations will continue to be run out of Hunt Valley, Maryland, the company says. Parent company Textron Defense Systems based in Massachusetts.

AAI Unmanned Aircraft Systems will be run by Steven Reid, AAI Test and Training will be led by Bob Peters and AAI Logisticsand Technical Services will be headed by Diane Giuliani. All three will serve as senior vice presidents and general managers of their respective operations, reporting to Fred Strader, Textron Systems' president and CEO.

AAI's current senior vice president and general manager, Ellen Lord, will lead Textron Defense Systems.

"These changes will enable each business to better support our customers' current and future needs, while also making our company more efficient," Strader says.

The breakup makes AAI and Textron the latest to spin off its divisions to improve operations and value. Last week, ITT Corp. announced plans to split itself into three publicly traded companies. Textron's other holdings and brands inclde Lycoming Engines, Bell Helicopter and Cessna.

Source: Flight International