BETHESDA, Md., May 29 (UPI) -- A definite agreement has been signed by Lockheed Martin and Astrotech Corporation for the acquisition of Astrotech Space Operations.
The acquisition, which needs the approval of Astrotech Corporation shareholders, is expected to close in the third quarter of this year. Following closure, the acquired company will become part of Lockheed's Space Systems business.
Subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including approval by the Astrotech Corporation shareholders, the transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2014. Upon closing, Astrotech Space Operations will be operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin and managed by the corporation's Space Systems business area.
"Astrotech Space Operations' expertise in the final stages of launch preparation complements our existing capabilities in satellite design, production and integration," said Marillyn (CQ) Hewson, Lockheed Martin chairman, president and chief executive officer. "This new capability expands our Space Systems services portfolio and enhances the value we offer to current and future Lockheed Martin and Astrotech customers."
The financial terms were not disclosed. Lockheed said they "are not material" to the company.
Astrotech Space Operations' launch preparation services range from final testing and fueling to encapsulation and day-of launch operations.
"Joining Lockheed Martin will benefit our customers and our employees," said Don White, senior vice president and general manager of Astrotech Space Operations. "As a wholly owned subsidiary, we'll be able to deliver the same level of expert, affordable launch preparation services our customers have come to expect with the added strength and stability of a company that's been a leader in the space industry since day one."