‘We feel we’re a trusted part­ner to In­dia’

Prior to Sin­ga­pore Air Show and De­f­expo 2012, Sp’sland­forces caught up with Wil­liam L. Blair, Pres­i­dent of Raytheon In­dia. Ex­cerpts of the in­ter­view cov­er­ing his thoughts about the shows and what these mean for In­dia.

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SP’s Land Forces (SP’s): What does the com­pany plan for the Sin­ga­pore Air Show? Wil­liam Blair (Blair):

We’ll be show­cas­ing many of our core mil­i­tary tech­nolo­gies. As it is an air show, we’ll be fo­cus­ing on our air­launched weapons and our suite of ad­vanced sur­veil­lance, sen­sors and radars. But we’ll also have land-based tech­nolo­gies as well.

SP’s: What is the rel­e­vance of the Sin­ga­pore Air Show to In­dia? Blair:

If a del­e­ga­tion from In­dia were to visit our stand at Sin­ga­pore, they would find many so­lu­tions that are rel­e­vant for In­dia’s re­quire­ments. For ex­am­ple, we’ll dis­play our plat­form in­de­pen­dent suite of air-launched weapons which could go on ei­ther of the air­craft that are be­ing con­sid­ered for medium multi-role com­bat air­craft (MMRCA). An­other ex­am­ple is some of the maritime sur­veil­lance tech­nol­ogy we’ll have on dis­play, which is highly rel­e­vant to a na­tion with thou­sands of kilo­me­tres of coast­line. You could al­most say Sin­ga­pore will be a sneak-pre­view for De­f­expo, with the main dif­fer­ence be­ing that at Sin­ga­pore we’ll be some­what broad-based as this show is fo­cused on all of Asia, while at De­f­expo, we’re prop­erly fo­cused on the needs of our In­dian part­ners.

SP’s: Can you give an ex­am­ple of what you’ll be of­fer­ing that would be of in­ter­est to the Asian mar­ket?

Well, one ex­am­ple that comes to mind is our in­tel­li­gence, sur­veil­lance and re­con­nais­sance (ISR) tech­nol­ogy so­lu­tions. The ca­pa­bil­i­ties we of­fer to our cus­tomers are very rel­e­vant to the broader Asian re­gion and map di­rectly to some of the pan re­gional chal­lenges all our cus­tomers face. For ex­am­ple nearly 80 per cent of to­day’s global trade is trans­ported in ships’ hulls and se­cur­ing maritime sup­ply chains against dis­rup­tion presents an enor­mous chal­lenge for the glob­alised world. Over 60,000 ves­sels tran­sit the Straits of Malacca ev­ery year with much of the cargo aimed at meet­ing crit­i­cal en­ergy needs of Asia-Pa­cific coun­tries.

Raytheon is a world leader in ad­dress­ing a wide range of lit­toral and deep ocean threats. The com­pany’s maritime pa­trol air­craft ca­pa­bil­i­ties pro­vide an in­te­grated so­lu­tion for en­hanced sit­u­a­tional aware­ness and mis­sion ef­fec­tive­ness that ad­dresses a wide range of chal­lenges cus­tomers cur­rently face. These in­clude bor­der se­cu­rity, maritime sur­veil­lance, dis­as­ter re­lief, en­vi­ron­men­tal mon­i­tor­ing and mul­ti­ple mil­i­tary ap­pli­ca­tions.

Em­pow­ered with ex­portable sig­nals in­tel­li­gence and unique tac­ti­cal maritime tech­nol­ogy, Raytheon’s maritime pa­trol air­craft ca­pa­bil­i­ties are de­signed to meet the needs of civil and mil­i­tary cus­tomers in the Asia-Pa­cific re­gion.

Our maritime based re­con­nais­sance, sur­veil­lance and tar­get ac­qui­si­tion ca­pa­bil­i­ties, ver­sa­tile ex­portable sen­sor of­fer­ings and multi-INT in­te­gra­tion ex­per­tise for mul­ti­ple plat­forms en­able us to cre­ate the right so­lu­tions for mis­sion needs while pro­vid­ing a clear path for fu­ture up­grades as needed.

SP’s: What are some other tech­nolo­gies you will show­case at Sin­ga­pore that would be of in­ter­est to In­dia? Blair:

I talked about our air-launched weapons port­fo­lio of course, but we’ll also have a suite of land com­bat weapons, such as the Javelin weapon sys­tem and man­portable Ser­pent launcher. We’ll also have de­tails on Ex­cal­ibur there, as well as a range of sen­sors that fo­cus on our maritime and lit­toral sur­veil­lance so­lu­tions, some al­ready dis­cussed here. Ad­di­tion­ally, we have a num­ber of other ca­pa­bil­i­ties for in­ter­na­tional cus­tomers from the most ad­vanced elec­tro-op­ti­cal/in­frared sen­sors to cut­ting edge radar sur­veil­lance tech­nolo­gies. Sur­veil­lance and sen­sor ca­pa­bil­i­ties for In­dia in­clude the AAS-44C (V) multi-spec­tral tar­get­ing sys­tems for use on MH-60R and MH60S he­li­copters and the APY-10 and SeaVue XMC sur­veil­lance radars. On­board the MH-60R he­li­copter, our air­borne low fre­quency Sonar and MK 54 light­weight torpedo pro­vide the sen­sor and weapon for an anti-sub­ma­rine war­fare mis­sion. The MK54 is also de­ploy­able from the P8 Po­sei­don air­craft.

The SeaVue radar fam­ily is known for its proven abil­ity to de­tect small maritime ves­sels in high sea states, has been ac­knowl­edged for de­tect­ing stealthy self pro­pelled semi-sub­mersible crafts that pose a sig­nif­i­cant threat to the US home­land se­cu­rity. At Raytheon, we’re ready to bring this ca­pa­bil­ity to In­dia where maritime and coastal sur­veil­lance are of para­mount im­por­tance. This ver­sa­tile air­borne sur­veil­lance radar can also be used for com­mer­cial and mil­i­tary ap­pli­ca­tions, in­clud­ing cus­toms drug en­force­ment, bor­der sur­veil­lance, ex­clu­sive eco­nomic zone (EEZ) mon­i­tor­ing, il­le­gal traf­fic mon­i­tor­ing, and oil spill de­tec­tion.

SP’s: Does Raytheon view In­dia as an im­por­tant mar­ket? Blair:

The term ‘mar­ket’ im­plies a strictly busi­ness ar­range­ment. And with Raytheon in In­dia, you have a re­la­tion­ship that ex­tends well be­yond a con­tract on a piece of pa­per. Raytheon has been in In­dia for more than 60 years, and af­ter that length of time, I think it’s safe to say we feel we’re a trusted part­ner to In­dia. We’ve ex­panded our com­pany’s foot­print in In­dia by mov­ing our op­er­a­tions to a new, larger of­fice in Delhi and adding more peo­ple to the team. Ad­di­tion­ally, in the past few years we’ve de­vel­oped tie-ups with a va­ri­ety of In­dian en­ti­ties, to in­clude de­fence pub­lic sec­tor un­der­tak­ings and pri­vate com­pa­nies. We are in the process of fi­nal­is­ing a num­ber of ad­di­tional ar­range­ments. So, the an­swer to your ques­tion is, Raytheon wants to build on and ex­pand its re­la­tion­ships in In­dia, and be the trusted part­ner of choice to both pri­vate in­dus­try and gov­ern­ment.

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