AgustaWestland, May 13, 2009 - ï»¿AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a contract for sixteen ICH-47F Chinook helicopters plus four options for the Italian Army by the General Directorate of Air Armaments (ARMAEREO).
The contract value is approximately â‚¬ 900 million and includes a five year logistic support service. The delivery of the first aircraft is planned for 2013 with final deliveries in 2017.
The ICH-47Fs will be operated by the Italian Army Aviation 1st Regiment "Antares" based in Viterbo and will replace the 40 CH-47C Chinooks that have been in service since 1973.
Alessandro Parrini, Senior Vice President Italian Government Business Unit, AgustaWestland said "We are happy to have achieved this major milestone. This contract, which marks the latest step in the long-lasting relationship between AgustaWestland and the Italian Army, further strengthens the strategic partnership between the company and the service and it will provide a significant contribution to the modernization of the Italian Army helicopter fleet".
AgustaWestland and the Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] signed an industrial agreement for the joint manufacture of the ICH-47F (as this latest version of the Chinook for the Italian Army has been designated) in July 2008. Under the agreement AgustaWestland, the prime contractor for the Italian Army programme, is responsible for systems integration, final assembly and aircraft delivery to the customer.
The AgustaWestland-Boeing industrial agreement also includes a licensing arrangement that enables AgustaWestland to market, sell and produce the Boeing CH-47F Chinook to the United Kingdom, other European countries and several countries in the Mediterranean region.
The new more powerful ICH-47F Chinook will offer the Italian Army enhanced operational effectiveness to perform multiple roles including transport missions, disaster relief and fire fighting due to its high payload, long range and high cruise speed.
The ICH-47 Chinook features an advanced communication system providing high situational awareness and enabling the aircraft to meet the latest Italian Army and Allies digitalization programmes requirements. The new helicopter will provide high operational interoperability in a network-centric environment while keeping through life costs low in the wide range of scenarios where the Italian service is called upon to perform its duties.
AgustaWestland is currently continuing to deliver NH90 TTH helicopters to the Italian Army having started deliveries in December 2007. The service has ordered 60 NH90 TTH helicopters which will replace older models currently operated in various utility roles. AgustaWestland is also undertaking a targeting system upgrade for the Italian Army AW129 EES helicopter fleet.