Lockheed Martin Australia’s new head office has been officially opened in a newly outfitted building in Canberra’s parliamentary triangle, close to its main customer, the federal government and Defence.
The official opening was performed by Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne who said Lockheed Martin was a great partner with the government in defending Australia and building up local defence industry.
“Our relationships is one of over 70 years, a mature relationship, an equal partnership,” he said.
Mr Pyne said that included the F-35 Lightning II fighter, combat system integration for the Future Submarines, Aegis combat system on the air warfare destroyers, Aegis as combat system on Future Frigates, and the Navy’s Romeo helicopters.
The minister said Lockheed Martin directly employed 800 Australians, with another 3200 indirectly employed. “We do all these things of course because we need to protect Australia’s national interests. We want to be a good partner to our great ally the United States, we want to have a forward defence capability in our region from India to North Asia and right across the South Pacific. We take our role in this part of the world very seriously,” he said.
Lockheed Martin international executive vice-president Rick Edwards read a message from company president and CEO Marilyn Hewson, who said opening the new Australian HQ was a powerful of how much Lockheed Martin valued the relationships with Australia.
“Our investment in a state of the art facility is also a recognition of the bright future of the innovation and progress as we see as we work in partnership across Australia,” the statement read.
The company took possession of the building, once occupied by IBM last June, and promptly started the $12 million fitout to be aimed at showcasing the company’s commitment to innovation and partnerships.
Lockheed Martin Australian chief executive officer Vince Di Pietro said this was where they planned to stay. “In this building what we have is a very clear enunciation of what we mean by being partner of choice for the future,” he said
Mr Di Pietro said the company’s many projects were more about partnership than specific products. “To be able to effect partnership in a positive way and to make a really positive difference in provision of the best equipment possible for our young women and men in the defence force, you do need to be partnering with a great number of people because no single company has all the answers.”