Fourth-largest U.S. government contractor takes a pass on exhibiting at Farnborough this year

FARNBOROUGH, England, 5 July 2012. Northrop Grumman Corp., the U.S. government's fourth-largest contractor, will not exhibit at the Farnborough International Airshow next week in company attempts to control costs in a shrinking U.S. defense budget.

Northrop Grumman, which earned slightly more than $15 billion in nearly 15,867 U.S. government contracts in federal fiscal year 2011, will be a notable absence from Farnborough, which is one of the year's largest aerospace and defense trade shows that highlights companies, aircraft, and aerospace products from around the world.

Northrop Grumman, which earned nearly 3 percent of U.S. federal contracting dollars in 2011, is passing up Farnborough reportedly as the company tries to control costs in anticipation of U.S. defense spending cutbacks. Federal fiscal 2011 ended on 30 Sept. 2011.

Of the top 10 U.S. government contractors in 2011, eight will be exhibiting at Farnborough: Lockheed Martin Corp.; The Boeing Co.; General Dynamics Corp.; Northrop Grumman Corp.; Raytheon Co.; United Technologies Corp.; L-3 Communications; and BAE Systems.

Among the top 10 U.S. government contractors, the two not exhibiting are Northrop Grumman and Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC).

U.S. manufacturers have cut back their presence not only at Farnborough, but also at the Paris Air Show, which stages in alternating years to Farnborough. Companies cite the high costs of attending Farnborough and Paris.

The Boeing Co. Defense, Space & Security segment, for example, reportedly limited the executives attending the Paris Air Show last summer to a minimum.

Northrop Grumman decision to skip Farnborough reportedly is the largest step yet taken by a major contractor to cut event costs. The company typically has had a high-profile presence at Farnborough.

Northrop Grumman has several facilities in the United Kingdom, and company officials say their decision to skip Farnborough does not suggest any change in the company's commitment to the British aerospace and defense market.

Northrop Grumman officials say they have yet to make a decision on attending the 2013 Paris Air Show. For more information contact the Farnborough International Airshow online at

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