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Dassault Aviation, Thales and Indra submit a joint MALE UAV offer in Franco-Spanish cooperation

28 May 2008

Paris/ Madrid 28 May 2008 – Dassault Aviation, Thales and Indra have signed an industrial agreement covering Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Medium-Altitude Long-Endurance (MALE UAV) activities. On 22 May 2008 the companies submitted an offer to the French and Spanish Ministries of Defence for a UAV MALE system to be developed within the framework of Franco-Spanish cooperation.

This pragmatic and competitive offer would match the operational needs of both countries, and allow the supply to both Armed Forces of long endurance UAVs for theatre surveillance within a very short timeframe. The first system could be operational as early as the end of 2012.

The proposed solution, managed at a European level by Dassault Aviation, Thales and Indra, entirely fulfills the requirements of both countries by taking into account the current budget constraints while addressing operational needs with a comprehensive high performance mission system, integrating leading technologies. The solution is based on the HERON TP UAV developed by the Israeli company Israel Aerospace Industries. It is a new generation multi-mission platform, whose design benefits from 30 years of Israeli experience in the domain of UAVs.

This joint offer capitalises on strong industrial capabilities acquired in Europe and also covers the technical and managerial skills needed to succeed in such a partnership - aerospace, mission systems, systems architecture and complex systems management. The solution is based on extensive expertise, long lasting cooperation, and is backed by a strong and solid industrial team.

About Dassault Aviation
In the past sixty years, Dassault Aviation has delivered more than 7500 civil and military aircraft to 75 countries, logging some 20 million-flight hours to date. This unique worldwide experience has allowed Dassault Aviation to build up considerable expertise in the design, development, production, sale and support of all types of aircraft and a recognized and demonstrated know-how, innovative operational solutions, as well as a pragmatic and dynamic approach to co-operation to the world of UAVs. Within the frame of a step-by-step approach initiated several years ago, its know-how in the field of systems technologies and airborne vectors allow the company to propose the best cost-efficient solutions to the users. Thanks to a pragmatic approach in its partnerships, Dassault Aviation has been able to establish a wide cooperation network with other companies, which is not only optimised for the success of today's programmes, but also contributing to the synergy of tomorrow's European defence industries.

About Indra
Indra is the premier Information Technology Company in Spain and a leading IT multinational in Europe and Latin America. It is ranked as the second European company in its sector according to stock market capitalisation, and it is one of the three Spanish companies with more investment in R&D. In 2007, revenues exceeded € 2.167 M, of which a third came from the international market. The company employs more than 24.000 professionals and has clients in more than 90 countries.

In the defence market INDRA is the Spanish company leader in the sensors development and integrated defence systems and military satellite communication systems, and which is more important is the first Spanish company responsible of the delivery of the only operational UAV system in Spain (PASI).

Indra is as well the Spanish leader in ISTAR systems after developing systems like SOSTAR, and participating in the most important international programs: AGS and TCAR.

About Thales
Thales is a leading international electronics and systems group, addressing defence, aerospace and security markets worldwide. Thales' leading-edge technology is supported by 22,000 R&D engineers who offer a capability unmatched in Europe to develop and deploy field-proven mission-critical information systems. To this end, the group's civil and military businesses develop in parallel and share a common base of technologies to serve a single objective: the security of people, property and nations. The group builds its growth on its unique multi-domestic strategy based on trusted partnerships with national customers and market players, while leveraging its global expertise to support local technology and industrial development. Thales employs 68,000 people in 50 countries with 2007 revenues of €12.3 billion.

Press Contacts

Dassault Aviation : Nathalie Bakhos
Export Military Communication
+ 33 (0) 1 47 11 60 94
Antonio Tovar
Gabinete de Prensa
Tlf.: + (34) 91 480 97 01

Thales : Natasha Harvey
Communication Aerospace
+ 33 (0) 1 34 81 40 50

Thomas Mackenzie
Communication Group
+33 (0) 1 57 77 86 26

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