New Cassidian CEO puts focus outside Europe after India setback

FRANKFURT Fri Feb 1, 2013 6:50pm IST

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The new head of Cassidian, the defence arm of European aerospace group EADS, has vowed to take the company's focus away from Europe after missing out on a $15 billion Indian order for fighter jets last year.

Germany-based Cassidian had to do more to better understand its customers and take more of an international view, Bernhard Gerwert, chief-executive since September, said.

"We are still putting too much focus on Europe," he was quoted as saying in Cassidian's employee magazine.

Gerwert said Cassidian aims to make 50 percent of its revenues outside of Europe by 2016, compared with around 30 percent now.

As part of that drive, on Friday Peter Gutsmiedl, already CEO of its Indian unit, was appointed the company's first head of Asia-Pacific to push for more business in the region.

Cassidian, as part of the Eurofighter Typhoon consortium, lost out to France's Rafale last year in a contest to supply India with 126 warplanes, after having been tipped as favourite.

It then launched a review of contract management and initiated a management shake-up, appointing Gerwert as CEO in September.

"We lost a number of key international campaigns in 2012 due to a lack of competitiveness and insufficient knowledge of our customers," said Gerwert.

With traditional defence budgets in Europe and the U.S. coming under pressure from government cutbacks, Cassidian will also look to focus more on unmanned systems - also known as drones - and products for the civil market, such as border security and cyber security.

"We will invest in capability enhancements to the Eurofighter for global export, unmanned aircraft systems, border security and cyber security," Gerwert said.

The German defence minister said on Friday that the country's military will acquire armed drones, to protect soldiers in dangerous situations.

(Reporting by Jens Hack; Writing by Victoria Bryan; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared
People walk in the Wipro campus in Bangalore June 23, 2009. REUTERS/Punit Paranjpe/Files

Wipro Q4 net profit beats estimates, rises 29 percent

Wipro posted a 29 percent rise in its fourth-quarter net profit, beating expectations, helped by increased IT spending by its customers. For the quarter ended March 31, the company said it earned 22.27 billion rupees compared with 17.29 billion rupees a year earlier.  Full Article | Full Coverage 

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Election 2014

Election 2014

India holds biggest day of voting with BJP gaining strength  Read | Full Coverage 

Market Eye

Market Eye

Sensex jumps 351 points, snaps 3-day losing streak  Full Article 

Insider Trading Case

Insider Trading Case

Ex-Goldman director Rajat Gupta to surrender June 17 in insider case.  Full Article 

Expansion Plans

Expansion Plans

Reliance Industries, HPCL Mittal plan refinery expansions.  Full Article 

S&P on India

S&P on India

S&P: India's ratings to depend on next govt econ, fiscal policies.  Full Article 

Ambitious Aim

Ambitious Aim

In green car race, Toyota adds muscle with fuel-cell launch.  Full Article 

Deal Talk

Deal Talk

Piramal to buy 20 percent stake in Shriram Capital for $334 million.  Full Article 

Bond Market

Bond Market

A star abroad, RBI boss riles bond traders at home  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage