General Atomics (GA) on Monday said it has acquired the majority of assets of the Colorado-based operation of Britain’s Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. (SSTL) to support the growth plans of its Electromagnetic Systems Group (EMS) in the development and delivery of small satellite and advanced payload systems.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. SSTL is an independent company majority owned by Europe’s Airbus Group.
Surrey-US provides design, manufacture, launch and operation of small satellites, mission solutions for remote sensing, science, navigation and telecommunications, training, and design and build of remote sensing and communications payloads.
“We look forward to the Surrey-US team joining us as we continue to expand our portfolio of small satellite and mission-support capabilities,” Scott Forney, president of GA-EMS, said in a statement. “The Surrey-US team’s expertise in designing and deploying small satellites and end-to-end mission solutions is complementary to ours. We are excited that GA-EMS now will offer ground-to-space solutions utilizing nano, micro and small satellites from 3U to 500 kilograms with a high degree of modularity and payload flexibility.”
SSTL said the divestiture followed a strategic review of the U.S. operation that found Surrey-US “could not achieve the necessary critical mass to be autonomous without a strong US partner.” SSTL said its focus in the U.S. “will be on pursuing contracts and collaborations with US partners, and actively seeking commercial customers for small satellite solutions in the US.”
A GA spokeswoman told Defense Daily via an email response to questions that the acquisition has increased the company's facility footprint by 13,000 square feet. The deal also adds new capabilities in satellites in the 50 to 500 kilogram class, she said.
Surrey-US’s employees and managers are now part of GA-EMS. Surrey-US is on a NASA rapid spacecraft acquisition contract and a General Services Administration contract schedule for spacecraft subsystems and services, and engineering services.