Over the past week, President Obama announced he would attempt to speed troop withdrawals from Afghanistan in an effort to accelerate the end of the war. The President made the announcement following his meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, noting the shift in troop levels was possible due to advancements made in training Afghan security forces and the overall success of U.S. troops.
The role of U.S. Forces would alter to one of training and advisory of Afghan forces while still conducting counterterrorism operations. “That is a very limited mission, and it is not one that would require the same kind of footprint, obviously, that we’ve had over the last 10 years in Afghanistan,” Obama noted of the effort. U.S. officials claim the number of troops remaining in Afghanistan by 2014 could be as low as 3,000 – 9,000, while General John Allen, the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, had initially suggested that as many as 15,000 should remain.
Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (Up 8.3%) – Shares are up this week following a speech by President Obama in which he addressed tightening gun limitations. Governor Cuomo of New York passed the Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act late on Monday night which expands the definition of banned assault weapons, creates a state database for pistol permits, reduces the maximum number of rounds in a magazine, and requires background checks on all gun sales, including those between individuals. Several other firearm manufacturers had strong gains over the week.
Cubic Corporation to acquire PS Management Consultants, a provider of specialist engineering and project management services for Australian Defense Forces’ training, simulation, communications, and range safety programs. The acquisition enhances Cubic’s training and simulation capabilities while expanding the company’s footprint abroad. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The Atlas Group, a portfolio company of Graham Partners, acquired Brenner Aerostructures, a company that specializes in the bonding of metals, anodizing of phosphoric acids, and stretch-forming for the aerospace industry. The acquisition brings historically outsourced, specialty manufacturing capabilities in-house. The company anticipates that the new capabilities will allow Atlas to win new business. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.