Andrew Lucas, AOS Group CEO, and Andy Park, Director of North American Operations, had a very successful week at the 2010 Farnborough Airshow. AOS was represented on two Hall 1 stands, A|D|S (Aerospace Defence Security, the new UK industry consortium) and Team Australia. Andy reported that enquiries about AOS technology and subsequent discussions were brisk during the week but clearly peaked on Wednesday.
The Farnborough highlight in terms of unmanned aircraft was the unveiling of BAE Systems' Taranis UCAV (unmanned combat air vehicle) on 12 July for government VIPs. While the actual aircraft remained under guard at BAE's Warton site, the Farnborough issue of Aviation Week & Space Technology featured a stunning photograph of Taranis on the cover. AOS's interest in Taranis is acute because our JACK technology underlies its autonomous, decision-making capabilities. Business highlights at Farnborough included networking sessions hosted by Team Australia, A|D|S and UK Trade & Industry, numerous discussions with government officials and an informative keynote address by UK Secretary of State for Defence, Liam Fox, MP, at the A|D|S Defence Conference.
Speaking to an audience of over 100 A|D|S members and press, Dr. Fox laid it on the line concerning the austere economic climate, program cuts, acquisition reform and cost containment but also said “…I am determined to ensure the UK retains robust and well equipped Armed Forces capable of intervening abroad where necessary to protect our security and interests at home.”
Andrew Lucas attended the Conference and said afterwards that Dr. Fox had certainly set UK industry a challenging target. “He wants to see industry change focus from UK sales to export sales, with the Government’s support,” Andrew explained. “AOS understands the importance and urgency of this change and is well positioned to work with its industrial partners to achieve this, supported by A|D|S and UK Trade & Investment.”
This was AOS’s fifth consecutive Farnborough Airshow and if initial results are any indication, it may be our most successful yet.
Andrew Lucas met with Susan Haird CBE, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of UK Trade & Investment, to discuss working together to export AOS's software products JACK, CoJACK and C-BDI to world markets. UKTI has provided valuable support to AOS over a number of years, assisting AOS to establish its base in the UK and now working with us to export from the UK to the world.
Andrew Lucas discusses the importance of consistent attendance at Farnborough with Victoria's Deputy Premier Rod Hulls while Tony Ellul of Marand Precision in Moorabbin looks on. The Victorian Government is a strong supporter of Victorian SMEs and has provided support for AOS's attendance at Farnborough and a Trade Mission to UK and Europe. This has allowed AOS to be represented on both the A|D|S stand and the Team Australia stand at the Airshow.
(Taranis photo: Crown Copyright)