Friday, December 19, 2008

Daily news - 19 Dec

ST Engg unit lands £150m UK deal
Singapore Technologies Engineering (STE) – In what is seen as a breakthrough deal, STE has won a £150 million (S$339 million) contract to supply over 100 Bronco all-terrain tracked carriers (ATTC) for deployment by the British armed forces in Afghanistan. The contract was awarded to STE's land systems arm, Singapore Technologies Kinetics (ST Kinetics), yesterday by the UK Ministry of Defence (UK MOD). The vehicle deliveries will commence in the third quarter next year, with the majority to be delivered in 2010. The Broncos will reach the UK to undergo transformation to become the armoured, all-terrain vehicle Warthog to replace the existing Viking in Afghanistan. The vehicle is already in service with the Singapore Armed Forces. The Warthog will be powered by a 7.2-litre engine producing 350 bhp and will be able to move through water - all while carrying up to 14 troops. When not in water, the highly agile, all-terrain vehicle will be able to climb steep gradients, cling to severe side slopes, tackle vertical obstacles and roll across trenches. The vehicles are being procured in response to an urgent operational requirement (UOR), according to STE. Four Warthog variants will be built under the contract - troop carrier, ambulance, command, and repair and recovery.

Olam buying US vegetable dehydration facility
Olam International – Agriculture supply chain manager Olam International is buying a US vegetable dehydration facility. It made no mention of the purchase price in its announcement yesterday but told BT that the acquisition cost is 'not significant' and is a 'high single digit' in millions. Olam also said that it will fund the acquisition with internal accruals and a three-year term loan - resources which its announcement said are already in place. The company had said last month that it will hold back on merger and acquisition (M&A) activities until credit markets stabilise and capital availability improves. 'However, we had indicated that small value M&A such as these will continue to be pursued as we will be able to finance such investments,' the group told BT. 'This asset acquisition helps us jump-start our entry into dehydrates business within the US.' With the deal, Olam will add US onions, garlic and other vegetable dehydrates to its existing portfolio of spices and dehydrates from China, Vietnam and India. Olam is acquiring the assets in California from De Francesco and Sons and related parties. It will also incur minor capital expenditure to refurbish and balance the processing line. The dehydration plant, which has been around from 1968 till its closure in February 2006, will be fully operational in 2009/2010. Olam will be able to participate in the next crop season and the investment will be earnings-accretive from FY2010 onwards.

Source: Kim Eng

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