Leonardo expands naval electronics business with the acquisition of 30% of GEM Elettronica

By Editor 22-Apr-2021

Leonardo has acquired a 30% stake of share capital in GEM Elettronica, an Italian company specialising in the production of small and medium-sized 3D radars, electro-optical sensors, and inertial systems for the maritime, air and land sectors. The move will strengthen Leonardo’s market position in the naval electronics field, particularly in short and medium-range sensors. Leonardo will be able to expand and diversify its offer and improve the engineering, production, and marketing of products in different bands to those in Leonardo’s existing portfolio.

GEM operates in complementary market niches to those of Leonardo, offering competitive systems such as navigation radar and coastal monitoring, electro-optical equipment, and fibre-optic gyroscopes. GEM is also active in the maritime and border surveillance market. The company has the capacity to produce critical components for Leonardo products as well as specialized radar and electronics capabilities.

As well as acquiring 30% of GEM, Leonardo has signed a commercial and industrial agreement with the company. This will see Leonardo and GEM developing synergies where GEM’s specific expertise aligns with Leonardo’s business, including joint marketing activities and joint research and development projects. Areas of collaboration will include the naval/maritime domain, critical infrastructure, and applications for land platforms.

GEM Elettronica has around 130 employees and produces products almost entirely in-house. Active in civil and military markets, the company has a presence in Italy and internationally and has established collaborations with major market players inside and outside of Italy. GEM has acted as a supplier to Leonardo for many years on numerous projects, including collaborations on the FREMM programme and the Italian Navy’s fleet modernization programme known as the “Naval Law”.

Under the agreement, Leonardo will be able to increase its stake in GEM’s share capital and acquire control of the company via a purchase option which can be exercised in 2024. The partnership is aimed at strengthening capabilities to increase competitiveness in the long term, in line with Leonardo’s strategic plan “Be Tomorrow – Leonardo 2030”