HELSINKI, Finland, May 26 (UPI) -- A 49.9 percent share of the Finnish state-owned defense company Patria has been sold to Norwegian defense company Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace for $317 million.
The deal was announced by Patria in a statement Tuesday.
The sale was announced in March but had been waiting on final regulatory approval.
"We are very pleased with Kongsberg's commitment to Patria," Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipilä said in March, when he called Kongsberg "financially strong" and noted that it is half-owned by the Norewegian state.
Sipilä said the sale would also improve Patria's position in international markets.
Finland bought the French firm Airbus' shares of Patria about a year ago and had been looking for a new minority shareholder since.
"Patria is Finland's leading defense supplier and owns 50 percent of the shares in the Norwegian company Nammo," Kongsberg said in a news release. "The partnership will be a leading defense supplier in the Nordics, and a considerable supplier on the European defense market."
"We're taking a proactive step to meet the ongoing consolidation in the defense industry," Kongsberg CEO Walter Qvam said earlier this year. "This transaction entails a significant strengthening of our Nordic and international position, it provides strengthened profitability and growth opportunities, and is an important step in the strategy for our defense businesses."
Patria products include mortars, aircraft parts and armored vehicles.