L-3 Buys Raytheon's Infrared Business

Company purchases infrared defense products division for $42 million in cash


NEW YORK (AP) -- L-3 Communications, a maker of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems, reported Wednesday that it acquired the commercial infrared business of defense contractor Raytheon Co. for $42 million in cash.

Based in Dallas, the business will be renamed L-3 Communications Infrared Products and provide uncooled thermal imaging products for the public safety, fire and rescue, security, transportation and industrial markets. Raytheon said it will continue to develop the systems for military applications.

L-3 expects the business to add $50 million to 2005 sales. Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call estimate L-3's 2005 revenue at $7.47 billion. In its last full year of reported sales, the company had $5.06 billion in revenue in 2003.

``There are many applications of lower-cost, uncooled thermal imaging technology within the military, homeland security and commercial marketplaces and we look forward to expanding L-3 Infrared Products' market penetration into these areas,'' said L-3 chairman and chief executive Frank C. Lanza in a statement.

Shares of L-3 fell 21 cents to $68.44 and Raytheon rose 13 cents to $38.12 in early morning trading. Both companies trade on the New York Stock Exchange.