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Boeing lands $5B missile defense contract

By MARY SELL, Alabama Daily News

The Boeing Company has won a Department of Defense contract worth about $5 billion to integrate and ensure readiness of the nation’s missile defense system.

Boeing’s work on the ground-based midcourse defense system will happen primarily at its Huntsville operations.

The system is the nation’s only protection against intercontinental ballistic missile threats, Boeing said in a written statement on Wednesday.

“Boeing’s proposal offered decades of experience in weapon systems integration, anchored by the unique expertise of our people,” said Cindy Gruensfelder, vice president and general manager of Boeing Missile and Weapon Systems and Huntsville site senior executive. “We’re proud to continue to support the mission-readiness of this critical missile defense capability for the nation.”

Boeing would not say Wednesday how many people might be employed under this contract. The company already employs about 3,000 people in Alabama, most of them in Huntsville, and is the state’s largest aerospace company. 

Work on the contract is expected to be complete in 2027.

The contract announcement was years in the making. In 2019, Alabama Daily News reported that Boeing had initially backed out of competition with Northrop Grumman for a massive missile defense contract, then later proposed the two companies work together on the project.

In 2020, the DOD split the one proposed contract into multiple smaller proposals. Last month, the Missile Defense Agency awarded Northrop Grumman a contract potentially worth more than $3 billion to integrate and manage weapon systems within the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, Defense News reported. The work on that contract will be done in Chandler, Arizona and Huntsville, according to the DOD.

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