Calidus, an Abu Dhabi-based Defense Technology Development and Manufacturing Company, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with GDC Middle East of Riyadh to establish a joint corporation to explore the market in the MENA region for the Calidus B-250 light attack aircraft and to develop in-house capabilities.
The MoU came on the occasion of IDEX 2019, the biennial defense-industry exhibition which concluded in Abu Dhabi last week.
Cutting-edge and cost-effective, the B-250 has multi-role capabilities including close air support, CAS, Counter-Insurgency, COIN, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, ISR, for modern and asymmetrical warfare. It can also serve as a trainer. Its innovative frame is made entirely of carbon fiber, reducing weight and operating costs while increasing maneuverability and service life.
The B-250 has received significant interest from regional and international buyers since its first public flight at the Dubai Airshow in November 2017.
Major General (Retired) Abdulla Alsayed Alhashmi, Calidus Senior Vice President, said: “Our agreement with GDC Middle East is another important step in our progress in extending the capability of the regional defense sector. We look forward to sharing our expertise with GDC and working together to build the market for the B-250 across the Middle East and North Africa.”
Fawaz Alsharabi, CEO of GDC Middle East, said: “This is a major step for GDC Middle East to be a partner with Calidus’ totally new developed aircraft. This is aligned with the Saudi Vision 2030, and provides an ideal opportunity for Saudi industry to jointly develop the platform’s mission system and weapon integration through GDC ME, and for GDC ME and Calidus to co-own the intellectual property.”
“The program will bring high-end technology capability and highly skilled jobs into the kingdom, as well as represent a significant opportunity for the Saudi military industry to develop a systems integration capability on a brand-new platform using GDC ME,” Alsharabi added
The Calidus B-250 light attack aircraft has multi-role capabilities for modern and asymmetrical warfare and can also function as a trainer. The B-250 has a maximum level speed of 301 KTAS, endurance of 12 hours, range of 2,400 NM, payload of 1,796kg and service ceiling of 38,000 feet. Its frame of lightweight carbon fiber contributes to low operating costs of less than $1,200 per flight hour. The B-250 made its first public flight at the Dubai Airshow on November 12, 2017. Calidus will manufacture the plane in the emerging aviation hub of Al Ain, UAE.
Calidus LLC is a defense-technology development and manufacturing company providing cutting-edge, mission-oriented and cost-effective solutions. The company was founded in 2015. Its B-250 light attack aircraft, with multi-role capabilities for modern and asymmetrical warfare, debuted at the Dubai Airshow on November 12, 2017. Calidus is based in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates, and is building a manufacturing plant in Al Ain, UAE.
GDC Middle East is a Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) company based in Riyadh specializing in aerospace engineering, systems solutions, and qualification & testing. GDC ME has expanded its presence throughout Saudi Arabia, working on projects with several customers. GDC Middle East services are provided by skilled local capabilities, with the highest level of reliability and safety, supported by the latest technologies in aerospace and defense.