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Press Release

Fieldfisher appointed for £500 million global maintenance programme for F-35 fighter jets

13/08/2019
Fieldfisher has secured the appointment to advise Sealand Support Services Limited (SSSL), the joint venture between BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman and the UK Ministry of Defence, on its delivery of the £500 million programme of maintenance for the F-35 fighter jet fleets globally.

In a major boost for the UK aerospace/defence sector, SSSL's F-35 avionic and aircraft component repair hub in North Wales has been awarded a second major assignment of work by the US Department of Defense.

Following the announcement in 2016 that the UK would be the location of the global repair hub for the initial tranche of F-35 components, this news sees significantly more UK support work to the cutting-edge jets. This new assignment will support hundreds of additional F-35 jobs in the UK. It will see crucial maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade services for an even wider range of F-35 avionic, electronic and electrical systems for hundreds of F-35 aircraft based globally. SSSL support work and services for F-35 are scheduled to commence from 2020.

Fieldfisher partner John Worthy commented: "The SSSL joint venture brings together a unique combination of skills and expertise to enable the UK to play a vital role in supporting the F-35 fighter jet fleets round the world. This represents a massive boost for UK jobs and builds on the strong foundations of the UK’s enduring defence partnership with the US."

Fieldfisher won this appointment to advise SSSL after a competitive selection process which included other leading UK law firms. The Fieldfisher team is led by John Worthy, supported by a broad team including partners John Brunning, Nick Philips and Helen Andrews and senior associate Steven Burrows.

Fieldfisher is advising SSSL on all aspects of its work for the F-35 programme, including commercial, supply chain and technical equipment agreements, real estate and construction, intellectual property, international trading, health and safety, regulatory, outsourcing, employment and information technology issues.

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