Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. has launched a new joint state-of-the-art missile plant with the Kalyani Group in Hyderabad, India, to be called Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems (KRAS).
Kalyani owns 51 percent, and Rafael owns 49 percent of the company, in accordance with the policy set by India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi requiring foreign firms to carry out manufacturing locally, and transfer the knowledge while doing so. The foreign companies are also required to establish joint firms with their Indian partners, who must hold the controlling interest.
The new facility is the first in the private sector to produce the Spike anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM).
The deal, estimated at approximately $900 million, was closed three years ago, according to the Globes business news site.
Rafael President and CEO Yoav Har-Even said the total investment in the joint venture is expected to be $70 million.
Har-Even said the facility will eventually also produce air-to-surface missiles, and that weapons systems will be produced at the request of India’s armed forces. However, India.com made a point of stressing the facility “deals only with the manufacturing of missiles.”
Kalyani made it clear, however, that other weapons systems would eventually be produced.
“We are hoping that we will have more business because we are looking at other products like glider bombs attached to aircraft and are used by the Air Force,” Baba N. Kalyani, chairman of the Kalyani Group told reporters.
Production is scheduled to start in a few weeks.