Bell Helicopter Textron landed a sizable Pentagon contract in support of two U.S. allies Tuesday.
Specifically, Textron was awarded a foreign military sales contract worth up to $85.4 million to provide engineering and support services to the governments of Iraq and Taiwan. The Pentagon's announcement of Tuesday's award was short on specifics. However, it is known that Iraq operates a fleet of at least 30 Bell 407 helicopters -- a civilian-grade utility helicopter often used for air ambulance, law enforcement, and also transport work.
In Taiwan, the company's presence is even greater. The Taiwanese Army's fleet of UH-1H "Huey" military helicopters was manufactured in Taiwan under license from Textron.
Tuesday's $85.4 million award amounts to less than 1% of the revenues Textron collects in a year. However, these revenues belong to Textron's most profitable manufacturing business. The company's Bell Helicopter division earns operating profit margins of 15% on each revenue dollar, dwarfing the profit margins at Textron's Cessna, Textron Systems, and Industrial divisions.
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