12/01/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/01/2023 20:00
Howmet Aerospace (NYSE:HWM) wishes to briefly comment on the lawsuit filed by Lockheed Martin yesterday concerning the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Program (the "F-35 Program"). Contrary to the allegations in Lockheed Martin's complaint, Howmet takes its contractual and regulatory obligations seriously and believes it has complied with those obligations in all material respects.
Howmet has been a proud supplier to Lockheed Martin and other entities that participate in the F-35 Program for decades. Howmet supplies titanium ingot, billet, sheet and plate (the "Products") to Lockheed Martin and other customers that also serve as suppliers to Lockheed Martin (collectively, and including Lockheed Martin, the "Customers"). The Products are made by mixing titanium sponge and titanium scrap metal that is reverted back to Howmet by its Customers to recycle into new Product.
Russia's invasion of Ukraine in early 2022 dramatically reduced global titanium sponge supply. As a result, Howmet's titanium sponge suppliers drastically increased their prices, contrary to their agreements with Howmet.
At the same time, further exacerbating the situation, Lockheed Martin permitted Customers to sell their revert scrap metal to third parties rather than provide it to Howmet as contractually required. This allowed the Customers to profit from highly inflated prices on the open market.
Despite these significant challenges, Howmet continued to purchase titanium sponge and titanium scrap metal on the open market in order to supply the F-35 Program and our Customers, including Lockheed Martin.
Since 2022, Howmet has been transparent with Lockheed Martin about these challenges and has acted in good faith to attempt to reach a reasonable resolution for the benefit and long-term health of the F-35 Program. While such discussions were still ongoing, Lockheed Martin unfortunately chose to file a meritless lawsuit seeking to compel Howmet to continue to supply Product at prices that no longer reflect commercial reality and on terms that Howmet believes it is not contractually obligated to provide. Howmet looks forward to defending itself vigorously in court against Lockheed Martin's claims. In the meantime, Howmet remains open to discussing a reasonable resolution.
This release contains statements that relate to future events and expectations and as such constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include those containing such words as "anticipates," "believes," "could," "envisions," "estimates," "expects," "forecasts," "goal," "guidance," "intends," "may," "outlook," "plans," "projects," "seeks," "sees," "should," "targets," "will," "would," or other words of similar meaning. All statements that reflect Howmet Aerospace's expectations, assumptions or projections about the future, other than statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements relating to results of legal proceedings and forecasts and outlook relating to the condition of end markets. These statements reflect beliefs and assumptions that are based on Howmet Aerospace's perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors Howmet Aerospace believes are appropriate in the circumstances. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by these statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: (a) deterioration in global economic and financial market conditions generally; (b) unfavorable changes in the markets served by Howmet Aerospace; (c) the loss of significant customers or adverse changes in customers' business or financial conditions; (d) manufacturing difficulties or other issues that impact product performance, quality or safety; (e) inability of suppliers to meet obligations due to supply chain disruptions or otherwise; (f) geopolitical, economic, and regulatory risks relating to Howmet Aerospace's global operations; (g) the outcome of contingencies, including legal proceedings, government or regulatory investigations, and environmental remediation, which can expose Howmet Aerospace to substantial costs and liabilities; (h) failure to comply with government contracting regulations; and (i) the other risk factors summarized in Howmet Aerospace's Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022 and other reports filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The statements in this release are made as of the date of this release, even if subsequently made available by Howmet Aerospace on its website or otherwise. Howmet Aerospace disclaims any intention or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements, whether in response to new information, future events, or otherwise, except as required by applicable law. Howmet Aerospace further notes that the outcome of litigation (including that referenced in this release) is uncertain.
About Howmet Aerospace
Howmet Aerospace Inc., headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is a leading global provider of advanced engineered solutions for the aerospace and transportation industries. The Company's primary businesses focus on jet engine components, aerospace fastening systems, and airframe structural components necessary for mission-critical performance and efficiency in aerospace and defense applications, as well as forged aluminum wheels for commercial transportation. With nearly 1,150 granted and pending patents, the Company's differentiated technologies enable lighter, more fuel-efficient aircraft and commercial trucks to operate with a lower carbon footprint. For more information, visit www.howmet.com.
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Howmet Aerospace intends to make future announcements regarding Company developments and financial performance through its website at www.howmet.com.
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Paul T. Luther
Source: Howmet Aerospace Inc.