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10 2001






The final decision on the winner of the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) contract has been made: Lockheed Martin wins out over Raytheon.

The decision, made Dec. 20 by an international arbitration tribunal, affirmed the July 1999 decision by the NATO Medium Extended Air Defense System Management Agency (NAMEADSMA) to deny the protest by MEADS Inc., a company consisting of Raytheon, EADS Deutschland, Alenia Marconi Systems S.p.A and LFK.

MEADS Inc. was competing against MEADS International, a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and the same European partners, for the contract to provide a highly mobile and transportable system of air and missile defense for the U.S., Italy and Germany. It is expected to be worth $300 million.

Raytheon, independent of the European partners, filed a protest to the contract awarded in May 1999 (DAILY, May 20, 1999), but did not define the grounds of the protest (DAILY, Aug. 19, 1999).

According to a statement by the arbitration tribunal released by the U.S. Army Air and Missile Defense Program Office at Huntsville, Ala., the decision validated the integrity of the source selection process as executed by the NAMEADSMA and "removed any uncertainty about the viability of awarding the contract to MEADS International."

The evaluation of the proposals and the selection of the winner were conducted by teams of technical and acquisition experts as well as representatives of users from the three nations involved, and patterned after U.S. competitive acquisition procedures, the statement said. This included the opportunity for a protest to be resolved by international arbitration procedures as defined by NATO.

The decision is considered final and binding and there will be no further opportunity for appeal.

AviationNow.Com 10 2001 .