LONDON — BAE Systems has completed the sale of its 75 percent holding in its South African land systems business to South African state-owned weapons maker Denel.

BAE announced last in August it was selling its stake in the business and announced April 28 it has completed the cash deal for 641 million rand (£36 million, or US $56.6 million). Taking into account the 25 percent of the business sold by BAE's partners DGD Technologies, Centurion-based Denel has paid a total of 855 million rand for BAE Land Systems South Africa.

The land systems business designs and build mine-protected vehicles, turret systems and drive trains.

"This divestiture will further focus our portfolio on our core capabilities and strong franchise positions in tracked, combat and amphibious vehicles, weapon systems, ship repair and munitions," said Erwin Bieber, the president of BAE Systems' US-based platforms and services sector .

Bieber said the land systems operation will benefit from Denel's complementary product lines and its close association with the South African government.

Completion of the deal comes hard on the heels of last week's announcement that BAE's US business had appointed advisers to consider the sale of the $1.75 billion-turnover manpower and services elements of its intelligence and security sector.

Divestitures by the US business of BAE in recent years have included the sale of its Safariland protective clothing and body armour business for $124 million.

Smaller deals include a $10 million sale of commercial armoured vehicle activities to the O'Gara Group and the disposal of a small unmanned air vehicle business.


Andrew Chuter is the United Kingdom correspondent for Defense News.

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