Partners, Partners

EADS officials said they are not seeking a large US prime with which to partner on the KC-X. There were talks with Raytheon and L-3, but the company feels it has the chops to spearhead a major program on its own. Pointing to success on the Army Lakota helicopter program—which the Pentagon has described as “exemplary”—EADS North America CEO Sean O’Keefe said the company has the expertise necessary, in conjunction with an industrial team that includes 10 major US sub-primes, such as General Electric, Vought, Goodrich, Honeywell, and Hamilton Standard. Northrop Grumman is a first-rate integrator, he said, but you don’t need to be an integrator to be a prime. The integration work could be farmed out, EADS North America chairman Ralph Crosby said.