(BLL) Ball Expands Antenna Center

The Aerospace and Technologies wing of Ball Corporation (BLL), Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. opened its $14.6 million expanded manufacturing center in Westminster, CO. The expansion has been made with the sole objective of increasing productivity which is likely to improve by 20% or more.

Almost 28000 square feet of space has been added to the original 160,000-square-foot two-story building, which contains Ball’s antenna and video technologies development and product and test facilities, including two anechoic test ranges. The expansion provides more space to the company’s tactical video technologies, phased array and conformal aperture antennas.

Some of the company’s current large projects including the Zumwalt Class Destroyer, Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile, and Geodesic Dome Phased Array Antenna, will also be housed in the expanded center.

Aerospace Manufacturing Center (AMC) was also expanded in order to house Ball’s high volume antenna manufacturing of the F-35 Lightning II military aircraft. By the year 2036, Ball will manufacture 48,000 F-35 antennas as a part of the contract with Lockheed Martin (LMT).

The company has currently employed 30 full time employees, working on the program. The number of workers is very likely to soar to about 200 as production increases. This contract will fetch Ball Aerospace approximately $677.2 million.

During the last reported quarter, the company’s Aerospace segment reported revenue of $191.2 million versus $165 million in the year-earlier quarter. With numerous contracts flowing in, Ball Corp. is expected to constantly improve its overall performance. We currently have a Zacks #2 Rank (short-term Buy) on the stock.

Headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, Ball Corp. is a manufacturer of metal and plastic packaging, primarily for beverages and foods. It also supplies aerospace and other technologies and services to government and commercial customers. The company employs more than 14,000 people worldwide and competes with Alcoa Inc. (AA).

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