Leonardo boosts its helicopter business with Kopter acquisition

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Italian aerospace and defense group Leonardo has signed a deal to buy Switzerland’s Kopter Group from Lynwood AG for $185 million, plus additional payments linked to targets, the company said on Tuesday.

In a statement Leonardo said Kopter’s new single-engine helicopter would be a “perfect fit” with its products, and that the acquisition offered the Italian group further opportunities to develop its technology.

The deal is expected to close by March, the company said. Consultancy firm EY and legal firm Gatti Pavesi Bianchi advised Leonardo on the deal, with legal firm HoganLovells advising Lynwood.

Kopter’s SH09, a new single engine helicopter, is a perfect fit for Leonardo’s state of the art product range offering opportunities for future technological developments, Leonardo said. “The Swiss company’s competencies will boost future developments towards more disruptive technologies, mission capabilities and performances, including innovative hybrid/electrical propulsion solutions.”

This acquisition will replace the planned investment aimed at the development of a new single engine helicopter, Leonardo said. Within the Helicopter Division of Leonardo, Kopter will act as an autonomous legal entity and competence centre.

Alessandro Profumo, Leonardo CEO, said: “By this deal we confirm our commitment to strengthening Leonardo’s core business and sustaining our leadership in key areas. With this acquisition we will bring on board innovative skills and technologies that will complement our own and will also contribute to keeping us at the forefront of innovation and competitiveness whilst maintaining our financial solidity.”

Gian Piero Cutillo, Managing Director Leonardo Helicopters, said: “We are proud to welcome this innovative company as an integral part of our world-leading helicopter business. It complements perfectly our existing product portfolio adding a promising rotorcraft that will greatly benefit from our industrial know-how, service and training experience and commercial network.”

Marina Groenberg, CEO of Lynwood, stated: “Lynwood is very proud to have strongly supported the development of Kopter and its SH09 programme over the past 10 years. It is now the right time for Leonardo to take over as they are a perfect match for Kopter at this stage of development.”

Kopter’s CEO Andreas Loewenstein declared: “Kopter is very excited to have won with Leonardo a solid industrial investor. Within Leonardo, we get the support to finalize our development on various fronts while keeping the ability to remain the agile single-engine pioneer that we are.”



Primarily based in Switzerland, Kopter has been operating since 2009, originally designated Marenco Swiss Helicopter and later rebranded as Kopter Group AG in 2018. The brand-new SH09 single engine helicopter programme has been launched to bring new capabilities and modern design to the civil market.