In a bid to revive the cancelled program to provide new helicopters for the White House, manufacturer Sikorsky told the Defense Department earlier this month that it was open to a partnership with rival Lockheed Martin Corp, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Sikorsky, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., would partner with Lockheed “in a heartbeat” to work on the program, Sikorsky president Jeff Pino said in Paris this weekend, according to the report. “I just wanted to get on the record very quickly,” he said.
Pino said he wrote to U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates earlier this month expressing his interested in providing Lockheed with helicopters as an option to save costs.
In 2005, a bid by an alliance of companies led by Sikorsky to work on the program lost to a Lockheed alliance.
However the Defense Department formally cut the program on June 1 this year.
The program faced cost overruns as the previous White House administration requested additional security requirements. Its $11.2 billion price tag was nearly double the original estimate. The project also ran into technical problems as requirements changed.