Industry Week in Review – July 1, 2011

Thursday marked former Defense Secretary Robert Gates’s last day as head of the Department of Defense. His accomplishments include directing the troop surges in Iraq and Afghanistan, realigning budget priorities, and identifying $100 billion in savings over 5 years even before President Obama’s recent request, instilling a “culture of savings and restraint” in the military. He has also voiced concerns regarding NATO, suggesting that constituent countries should pool their resources more effectively and rely less on the United States. Gates expressed support for incoming secretary Leon Panetta, citing the value of his unique perspective on U.S. national security challenges as a former CIA Director.

Notes on some big movers:

Astronics Corporation (Up 12.9%): Shares rose for the week as the Company reported earnings for 1Q11. EPS was $0.45, 45% over the same quarter in 2010, beating analysts’ projections and marking the company’s 7th consecutive positive earnings surprise. Sales rose 17.5% YoY to $55.13 million and the gross margin expanded from 24.6% to 26.3%.

QinetiQ Group PLC (Up 12.5%): Shares rose for the week as the Company announced Thursday that it will be one of 33 prime contractors on the TIPSS-4 IDIQ suite of contracts, which serves as the primary procurement vehicle for technology-related services within the IRS and other Treasury Department bureaus.

Oshkosh Corporation (Up 18.7%): Shares rose for the week as the Company announced Thursday that billionaire investor Carl Icahn filed a Schedule 13D with the SEC reporting that he has acquired beneficial ownership of 9.5% of the Company’s common stock, consisting of a combination of shares and call options.

Notes on relevant transactions:

Kaseman, LLC, a portfolio company of DC Capital Partners, announced Wednesday that it has made a strategic investment in Sallyport Global Holdings, Inc., a provider of engineering and professional services including fire protection, power generation, base operations, and logistics services for an undisclosed amount. The transaction expands Kaseman’s capabilities and enables them to offer more comprehensive solutions to customers.

Saab AB announced Wednesday a definitive agreement to acquire Sensis Corporation, a provider of air traffic management (“ATM”) solutions and surveillance technologies for about $155 million with an additional potential earn-out payment of about $40 million by 2014. The acquisition strengthens Saab’s offerings in radar, sensors, ATM, and defense solutions, establishing a stronger position in the U.S. market.

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