Northrop Grumman, an American global Aerospace and defence technology company was not a leading player in the launch industry, before its acquisition of Orbital ATK. However, the company holds a rich background in producing spacecraft. These days, the company is busy developing a spacecraft bus for the James Webb Space Telescope in Redondo Beach, California. Northrop also is into constructing aeroplanes and its components to be promoted to the military.  

Wes Bush, the chairman and chief executive officer of Northrop, welcomed the ATK team saying that the talented employees will add value to the existing team and the combination would result in something marvelous. 

Northrop has willingly absorbed the launch vehicle developer, satellite manufacturer, and ammunitions suppliers. Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems is the name given to this new entity. Northrop took over acquiring ATK at a price of $9.2 billion – $7.8 billion was paid in cash, and a debt transfer has spent $1.4 billion. The Federal Trade Commission cleared the transaction. Orbital ATK and Northrop Grumman will together make rocket motors for defense and commercial purposes.

“Together, through our leading technologies and innovation-focused culture, we look forward to developing enhanced mission capabilities and more competitive offerings in critical global security domains,” Bush said.

The acquisition was under process since September, stakeholders and regulatory agencies were discussing the deal for final approval. ATK was developing small satellites and medium class launchers and was into manufacturing ammunition for the defense sector. It had its headquarters at Dulles, Virginia, with 13,000 employees. Northrop, on the other hand, is one of the four notable names of suppliers of arms and ammunition for the US military. 

FTC i.e the Federal Trade Commission, has preserved the right of both the companies involved in the dead and has declared about the acquisition that “By ensuring that other missile suppliers can continue to compete, the settlement preserves the pre-competitive benefits of the transaction while addressing the potential anticompetitive harms,”

 Orbital ATK has proved its worth in manufacturing medium scaled spacecraft while Northrop has its expertise in potentially larger models. Mr Bush said that it was a very complimentary match and this merger would increase the range of offerings both the companies had previously. The company – Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems- would be led by Blake Larson, the CEO of Orbital ATK since 2015. He was formerly working as the head of ATK’s aerospace business.