MBDA, Herakles (Safran group) and Roxel optimise the ramjet sector

Paris, December 3rd, 2012

On December 1st, MBDA France acquired the ramjet integration and testing activities of Roxel France. This development - which does not include Roxel's ramjet integral booster or thermo-structural materials activities - follows the signing of an agreement between MBDA and Herakles (a subsidiary of Safran group), equal joint shareholders of the Roxel group. Specialising in tactical propulsion technology in France and in the UK, the Roxel group will continue to supply rocket motors for MBDA missiles as well as those of other suppliers. MBDA has now become the technical authority for ramjets in France as well as in Europe.

This transaction sees the transfer to MBDA France of 18 Roxel France employees, site facilities as well as ramjet test benches all of which will remain on the same Bourges-Subdray site in the Centre region of France. This industrial optimization aims to bring together engineering and test activities in order to create a more integrated and coordinated approach whilst working towards future developments.

Commenting on the agreement, Antoine Bouvier, CEO of MBDA said : "By optimizing the industrial and commercial basis of their organisations in this way, MBDA, Herakles and Roxel aim to maintain a sovereign capability in France at the best possible cost to the tax payer. This capability is unique in Europe and is one that has been patiently developed over the course of more than half a century. It is a capability that will be critical in the coming years in controlling costs and lead times for future French and European long-range super- and hyper-sonic missile programmes thereby preserving the competitiveness of the missile sector in Europe".

Philippe Schleicher, CEO of Herakles, added :  "As a result of this transfer, Roxel will be able to continue to invest and to develop its core business, namely solid-fuel rocket motors for tactical missiles, an activity in which it is the European leader and one of the world's leading companies as well. Herakles will work together with Roxel in this process and will continue to provide the skills it has acquired in the area of ballistic missile and space launch vehicle propulsion".

*Ramjets are air-breathing motors especially suitable for supersonic flight propulsion over long distances.

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About MBDA
With a significant presence in five European countries and within the USA, in 2011 MBDA achieved a turnover of € 3 billion with an order book of € 10.5 billion. With more than 90 armed forces customers in the world, MBDA is a world leader in missiles and missile systems.
MBDA is the only group capable of designing and producing missiles and missile systems that correspond to the full range of current and future operational needs of the three armed forces (land, sea and air). In total, the group offers a range of 45 missile systems and countermeasures products already in operational service and more than 15 others currently in development.
MBDA is jointly owned by BAE SYSTEMS (37.5%), EADS (37.5%) and FINMECCANICA (25%).

About Herakles
Herakles, a subsidiary of Safran group, designs, develops, manufactures and markets solid rocket motors, energetic materials and raw materials as well as thermostructural and organic composite materials for defense, aerospace, aeronautics, automotive safety and industry. Herakles provides services, products and equipment for the strategic and tactical missiles and space launch vehicles, for civil and military aeronautics and automotive safety as well as tools for the industry. Its expanded scope can offer its customers a range of complementary high performance products.

About Roxel
Roxel, the European leader in tactical propulsion is a subsidiary owned in equal shares by MBDA and Herakles. Roxel designs, develops and manufactures all types of rocket motor used in tactical munitions and cruise missiles throughout the world. Roxel offers solutions to system primes for missiles, rockets or other tactical munitions for all their propulsion requirements, whether for completely new systems or for improvements to the performance of their existing systems. Roxel is able to offer the best solutions, using the most advanced technologies, for ramjets, hypervelocity and variable thrust motors to satisfy requirements for manoeuvrability, stealth and insensitive munitions performance.
Roxel is an Anglo-French Company with sites located in England and in the Aquitaine and Central regions of France.

Press contact MBDA 
Jean Dupont
Group Head Of Media Relations
Tél. : + 33 (0) 1 71 54 11 73
jean.dupont@mbda-systems.com
Mobile : + 33 (0) 6 33 37 64 66

France
Marie-Astrid Steff
Tél: + 33 (0) 1 71 54 27 27
marie-astrid.steff@mbda-systems.com
Mobile: +33 (0) 6 72 99 92 10

Press contact Herakles :
Sylviane Beaubois
Responsable communication
Tel : 06 77 31 29 33
s.beaubois@safran-sme.fr