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Thales extends its cooperation in India with Samtel Display Systems Ltd

19 June 2007

Thales and Samtel Displays Systems Ltd announced today that they are extending their cooperation in the domain of avionics equipment. Leveraging on the track record and domain expertise of both companies, Thales and Samtel will work, towards the development, production and sale of new cockpit display systems destined for the Indian and export markets. This cooperation generates the opportunity for the creation of a joint company in India.

Thales has long experience and strong expertise in this domain, with over 1500 Helmet Mounted Sight Displays, thousands of Multi Function Displays and Head Up Displays in service worldwide; and Samtel is a key player internationally within the sector of avionics display systems. By combining their expertise within a joint venture company, the two companies will join their engineering and manufacturing strengths and create new market opportunities. Thales currently provides the Indian Naval Forces with head mounted displays for the MiG 29 combat aircraft and many other products for a variety of platforms.

Mr. Satish Kaura, Chairman and Managing Director, Samtel Display Systems Ltd., commented, "This joint venture will complement Samtel's well established domain expertise in the Indian Defence sector with the technological expertise in equipment and systems from Thales. This Joint Venture will assist the growth of our business in this area and will enable us to increase market penetration."

"I am proud to be involved in this cooperation, which aims to establish a real centre of excellence in avionics based in India. Strategic business alliances, such as the one we are creating with Samtel, are essential to increase Thales' footprint in the Indian marketplace. This win-win partnership will leverage the resources and expertise of both companies," stated Mr Emmanuel Grave, Senior Vice President, and General Manager of Thales' aerospace activities.

About Thales in India

Thales has been operating in India since 1953, and has stepped up its presence in India over recent years. With sales of € 200 million annually, the Group is a long-term partner of the Indian Armed Forces: its equipment and systems have been selected for various types of platforms in service with the Army, Air Force and Navy such as air defence radars, avionics for military and civil aircraft, optronics and sonars. Thales also won a major contract in 2005 with the Indian Navy for the supply and technology transfer of six Scorpene submarines. Thales is equally present in the civil domain and is partner and supplier to many Indian companies within the fields of aerospace and security.

Thales aims to reinforce partnerships with Indian industries through transfers of technology and joint ventures; and to work with local industry to meet India's growing defence needs, through programmes such as the Mirage 2000 upgrade programme for the Indian Air Force, electronic warfare projects and tactical radio networks for the Indian Army.

About Thales

Thales is a leading international electronics and systems group, addressing defence, aerospace and security markets worldwide. Thales's 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 forecast 2007 revenues in excess of € 12 billion.

About Samtel
SAMTEL is the largest integrated manufacturer of displays for entertainment, professional and avionics applications in India. An undisputed leader in the Indian market for television displays, it employs 6000 people in nine world-class factories and has a turnover of approximately US$ 300 million. Samtel's ruggedised naval and avionics displays meet the stringent MIL standards. Over the years, Samtel has built strong alliances with its global leaders, customers and suppliers. The group has continuously taken initiatives to develop its knowledge infrastructure to meet future challenges and has grown through products developed in its R&D centres. Its engineering services division has evolved from its manufacturing experience and knowledge to provide effective solutions and technology services in CAD, CAM and CAE.

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