Lockheed Martin Reveals its F-35 Program Growth in 2021

Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) provided an update on the growth of its F-35 Program in 2021. The company revealed that 2021 was a successful year for the F-35 program, which continues to strengthen its global footprint and bolster its operational capabilities.

The F-35 plays a crucial role in the integrated deterrence of the U.S. and other allies, with over 750 aircraft operating from 30 bases and ships around the globe. Currently, 9 countries have F-35s operating from their own bases; 12 services have declared Initial Operational Capability; and 6 services have employed F-35s in combat.

F-35 Program Growth Update

The company attributes its F-35 program achievements to investments in digital technologies including smart tools, connected machines, and augmented reality, leading to 142 deliveries in 2021.

In 2021, F-35 was newly selected by Switzerland and Finland for their new fighter jet programs.

Furthermore, Denmark received its first F-35 deliveries. Notably, Netherlands Air Force became the ninth nation to declare their F-35 fleet ready for Initial Operational Capability in 2021.

The company stated that the F-35’s operational performance remained strong, with some F-35A deployments demonstrating over 80% mission-capable rates. In addition, 93% of the F-35 parts exceeded performance expectations.

During the year, F-35s were part of four base and ship activations. It participated in the first U.S. Navy F-35C deployment aboard the USS Carl Vinson, as well as over 60 other deployments and detachments.

Furthermore, F-35Bs from the U.S. Marine Corps and Royal Air Force flew nearly 1,300 sorties, more than 2,200 hours, and conducted 44 combat missions as part of the UK’s Carrier Strike Group 2021.

Management Weighs In

Bridget Lauderdale, VP and GM of the F-35 program, commented, “The F-35 joint enterprise team continues to provide unmatched combat capability to the 21st-century battlespace through the F-35,” said “Providing unparalleled support to the growing fleet, participating in numerous Joint-All Domain exercises and meeting our delivery target during a global pandemic is no small feat while the F-35 was also chosen by Switzerland and Finland as their next fighter.”

She further added, “We’re embracing digital transformation to enable faster development and continuous deployment of software, using digital models and supercomputers to augment physical test data with simulation-based verification, and automating data processes to save time and glean insights that improve sustainment.”

Analysts Recommendation

The Wall Street community is cautiously optimistic about the stock, with a Moderate Buy consensus rating based on 3 Buys and 5 Holds. The average LMT stock forecast of $381.38 implies 6.97% upside potential to current levels.

Bloggers Weigh In

TipRanks data shows that financial blogger opinions are 100% Bullish on LMT stock, compared to a sector average of 71%.

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