Tatas announce two defence-related tie-ups


New Delhi : The Tata group, India’s leading corporate house, Saturday announced two defence-related partnerships, one with a European consortium and the other with an Israeli company, on tactical communications and unmanned aerial vehicles.

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The pact between Tata Advanced Systems and EADS calls for a high-tech team to jointly bid for the Indian Army’s $1 billion advanced tactical communications system project, company officials said at the ongoing defence expo here.

The other pact with Israel’s Urban Aeronautics calls for joint exploration of opportunities to manufacture and market unmanned aerial vehicles that will be based on overseas technology but for the Indian market.

Tata Industries, the parent company of Tata Advanced Systems, has also invested in Urban Aeronautics and focuses on providing integrated solutions for the defence and aerospace markets.

“The teaming arrangement with EADS would ensure that the solution proposed is cutting edge, best-in-class and meets all the requirements of the Indian Army,” said Ratan Tata, chairperson of the Tata group.

“The Tatas recognize the significance of this project of national importance and therefore, with a view to leveraging the capabilities of several Tata companies, we propose to implement the project through the new umbrella company.”

The order of $1 billion proposed by the Indian Army for tactical communications system is intended to replace its current system and bring them on a par with the most sophisticated tactical mobile equipment in the world, the officials said.

Urban Aeronautics is also displaying its technology, such as a model of its Mule Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, at the Tata Pavilion at the defence exposition at the sprawling Pragati Maidan fair grounds here.

“We are extremely pleased to have joined forces with the Tatas to exhibit this unique technology with the plan of eventually being able to bring the Fancraft revolution to the Indian market,” said Rafi Yoeli, founder of the Israeli firm.