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Private-equity firm acquires aviation firm Kaman for $1.8 billion

WASHINGTON — Private-equity firm Arcline Investment Management will acquire aviation technology company Kaman Corp. in a roughly $1.8 billion all-cash deal, according to a Jan. 19 announcement.

Kaman will become a privately held company when the transaction is final, it notes.

“Over the last several quarters, we have made significant progress executing our strategy by transforming our portfolio, through investing in innovation, pivoting to new growth technologies, and optimizing the Company’s cost structure,” Ian Walsh, Kaman’s chief executive, said in the company announcement. “[W]e look forward to benefiting from increased resources, expertise and flexibility as a private company post-closing.”

Under the agreement, Kaman shareholders will receive $46 per share in cash, the company announcement said. This price is roughly double Kaman’s closing share price on Jan. 18.

The Bloomfield, Connecticut-based Kaman, founded in 1945 by aviator Charles Kaman, is known for its heavy-lift K-MAX manned helicopter, which saw operations in an unmanned mode in Afghanistan in 2011.

The company spent nine months developing its KARGO unmanned aerial system to deliver a medium-lift logistics capability. It unveiled KARGO, a quadcopter meant to resupply small units of Marines scattered around island chains as part of the Corps’ expeditionary advanced base operations concept, in 2021.

Kaman also manufactures aircraft components and aerostructures for helicopters, fixed-wing and unmanned aircraft and has performed subcontract work to restore, modify and support the SH-2G Seasprite maritime helicopters.

“Kaman has long been a trusted solutions provider of engineered components and subsystems of mission-critical markets and we believe the Company is in a strong position to grow and benefit from attractive tailwinds,” Arcline said in the statement. “We look forward to working closely with Ian and the rest of the talented Kaman team to drive further growth through accelerated investments in both new product development and strategic acquisitions.”

Jen Judson is an award-winning journalist covering land warfare for Defense News. She has also worked for Politico and Inside Defense. She holds a Master of Science degree in journalism from Boston University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kenyon College.

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