Hyderabad, Aug 3: Israel’s leading defence company Rafael along with India’s Kalyani Strategic Systems will manufacture Spike, the anti-tank guided missile (ATGM), at their state-of-the-art facility which was inaugurated here on Thursday. Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems (KRAS), a joint venture between Kalyani Strategic Systems Ltd and Rafael Advanced Defence Systems will develop the new generation missiles.
The facility, the first in the private sector to manufacture missiles, plans to start production in a few weeks. Baba N. Kalyani, chairman, Kalyani Group, told reporters that they were waiting for orders from the Indian Army, which he expects to be in thousands.
Rafael, which was chosen as the partner for supply of the missiles to the Indian Army, is waiting for final approval to start production. “The order is somewhere closer to a billion dollars over a couple of years,” said Kalyani. He said they so far invested Rs 60 crore to Rs 70 crore and would be adding a similar additional amount, once orders start coming in.
Rafael President and CEO Yoav Har-Even said the total investment in the joint venture would be $70 million, covering various products. Termed as the largest yet FDI in defence, Kalyani holds 51 per cent in the JV while Rafael holds 49 per cent. The 24,000 square feet facility which has come up in record time of 10 months in Hardware Tech-Park on Srisailam highway will provide direct employment to 500 people and indirect employment through vendors and suppliers to 2,000 to 3,000 people.
Kalyani said once they stabilise, they will look for exporting the missiles to the countries in Southeast Asia, subject to approval from the government of India. Telangana’s Minister for Industries K.T. Rama Rao and Israel’s Ambassador to India Daniel Cameron were present at the inauguration of the facility, which deals only with the manufacturing of missiles. (IANS)