QinetiQ agrees to purchase two Australian defence consulting companies

02 Jan 2008

Acquisitions will provide a strong regional presence in Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide

QinetiQ Group plc, an international defence and security technology company, announces today that it has signed agreements to purchase two Australian defence consulting businesses, Ball Solutions Group Pty Ltd and Novare Services Pty Ltd. These acquisitions are being acquired for a total cash consideration of A$20 million and are subject to regulatory approval. They represent QinetiQ's first investment in Australia and provide the company with a presence of 185 staff located in Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide.

Ball Solutions Group is a provider of professional and consulting services, primarily to the Australian Department of Defence, has annual revenues of A$29 million and is being acquired from Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp of Broomfield, Colorado, USA. It operates in three main practice areas: business systems and applications; data acquisition and management; and operations research and analysis.

Novare provides engineering and logistics services to the Australian Department of Defence, its prime contractors and selected commercial partners. It has annual revenues of A$6.1 million and is being acquired from its management, who will remain with the company. Novare’s core expertise is in explosive ordnance and weapons, aerospace systems, advanced technical data management and performance based contracting.

These acquisitions represent the continuing execution of QinetiQ’s strategy to grow its Europe, Middle East and Australasia (EMEA) capabilities. They will enhance QinetiQ’s portfolio of defence and security based expertise, provide additional routes to market and broaden QinetiQ’s customer base through existing relationships and contractual arrangements.

Commenting on the acquisitions Graham Love, group chief executive officer of QinetiQ said: "These acquisitions reflect our confidence in the strength of the Australian defence market and will establish QinetiQ as a leading provider of independent advice services within the country. We will also be seeking to leverage synergies between these companies and our businesses in the UK and USA to provide additional benefits to our Australian customers."

Dick Hedges, managing director of Ball Solutions, welcomed the acquisition of his business by QinetiQ. “We have worked with QinetiQ for some time and we share the common objective of providing independent defence services in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.”

Greg Wilcock, managing director of Novare, stated that his team very much look forward to being a part of QinetiQ and drawing on a strong international technology base.

The acquisitions are subject to Australian and US Government regulatory approval and are expected to complete by the end of February 2008, after which the companies will trade as QinetiQ Consulting Pty Ltd.

Notes for Editors:

QinetiQ (pronounced as in 'kinetic energy') is a leading international defence and security technology business that was formed in July 2001 from the UK Government's Defence Evaluation & Research Agency (DERA). QinetiQ has approximately 13,500 employees, who deliver technology-based services and exploit QinetiQ's strengths in technology research by selling systems solutions, products and licences to government and commercial customers in a spectrum of defence, security and related commercial markets.

In February 2006, QinetiQ Group plc was listed on the London Stock Exchange (main market) and joined the FTSE250 in June 2006. In the year to 31 March 2007, QinetiQ delivered a 17.4 per cent rise in underlying operating profit before tax to £106.0m on turnover which rose by 9.3 per cent to £1,149.5m.

Ball Solutions Group Pty Ltd
(www.ballsolutions.com) was established in Australia 1996 and provides professional and consulting services primarily within the defence sector. The company provides strategic and operational consulting as well as services in business planning, process improvement, life cycle costing, supply chain management, performance management, capability management, speciality engineering, and systems integration. The company is headquartered in Canberra and has nine further locations across New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia. Most of Ball Solution’s revenue is sourced direct from the Department of Defence, primarily within the aerospace domain.

Novare Services Pty Ltd
(www.novare.com.au) was established in 2002 to provide explosive ordnance consultancy services to the Australian Department of Defence following the identification of a gap in the Australian market for these services. The company is headquartered in Brisbane with staff at two further locations in Canberra and Sydney. Its two main customers within the Defence Material Organisation are the Guided Weapons Explosive Ordnance branch and Guided Weapons Acquisition branch.

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QinetiQ agrees to purchase two Australian defence consulting companies