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Mobile, Alabama: Austal Ships Pty Limited (Austal) and Birdon Pty Limited (Birdon) are pleased to announce they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly develop defence shipbuilding capability in Western Australia to deliver the Australian Department of Defence Landing Craft-Medium (“LC-M”) Project.

The formation of the MoU commenced in late November when Minister for Defence Industry, Hon. Pat Conroy, announced a Heads of Agreement (“HoA”) to establish a Strategic Shipbuilding Agreement (“SSA”) between Austal and the Commonwealth, and named Austal as the preferred vessel constructor. Birdon was selected by the Commonwealth as the preferred designer for the LC-M Project.

Under the MoU Austal and Birdon have agreed to work with each other to jointly develop a costed proposal for the LC-M Project, along with exploring a range of other potential Defence shipbuilding opportunities.

“Austal has a very good track record of working effectively with third-party vessel designers and we look forward to working with Birdon to develop the MoU into a more substantive partnership so that we can deliver a capable and cost-effective LC-M program for the Army,” Mr Gregg said.

Birdon CEO Jamie Bruce said the MoU was a signal of the intent of both companies to form a collaborative relationship for the design and build of LC-Ms. “We are pleased that our LC-M design, which exceeds requirements and will deliver beyond any other vessel currently in-service or advertised globally, was the design preferred by the Commonwealth. We look forward to teaming with Austal to bring the design to life,” Mr Bruce said.

Source: Austal