Exclusive: OTT acquires LMT Products


Armoured vehicle manufacturer OTT Technologies is the new owner of LMT Products, which had been placed in business rescue last year after Denel lost control of the company.

LMT Products, a former 100% owned subsidiary of LMT Holdings, designed and manufactured a variety of protected vehicle products, ranging from protected cabs for Mercedes Benz vehicles to armoured personnel carriers. It exported large numbers of armoured vehicles, mainly to the Middle East, including the clean-sheet LM13 Multipurpose Combat Vehicle, designed to fit into a C-130 transport, and the LM8 Special Operations Vehicle based on a Ford chassis. LMT also developed the LM14 low cost armoured personnel carrier, a clean sheet design able to carry 10 people, and the LM13-derived LM16 high mobility armoured personnel carrier that can accommodate up to 11 people. As part of its relationship with the UAE’s International Armoured Group (IAG), LMT sold the JAWS APC as the LM5 in a couple of African countries. The company has also developed the Meerkat retractable weapons station for light armoured vehicles.

LMT Products used to be the trading company of LMT Holdings and went into voluntary business rescue in September 2019.

At the time of the commencement of business rescue proceedings, Denel was the majority shareholder of LMT Holdings but the underlying business was with LMT Products (LMT Holdings was 51% owned by Denel, 29% by Pamodzi and 20% by the founding members and included LMT Products, LMT Engineering and LMT Properties).

LMT had been hit by Denel’s liquidity crisis and was struggling to pay salaries last year. Part of LMT’s issues stemmed from contracts for the Badger infantry fighting vehicle being diverted to VR Laser, which was subsequently liquidated.

OTT Technologies said it is proud to be the new owner of LMT Products and the acquisition “creates an attractive new future for LMT’s quality products in the OTT stable of excellence.”

“Personnel and vehicles of LMT Products will add further value to an already proven range of products and services offered by OTT Technologies to its international customers. LMT will continue to specialise in the design and manufacture of armoured vehicles with protection against ballistic, landmine and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Its design capabilities provide for the integration of protection technologies into armoured vehicles with, amongst others, flat or semi-flat floor landmine protection.”

LMT designed and qualified the flat floor landmine protection for the South African Army’s new Badger infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) being built by Denel Land Systems.

OTT Technologies started out maintaining and upgrading military vehicles like the Ratel, Samil and Mamba, but moved into manufacturing its own Puma range, which has seen export success and been proven in combat. There are two main versions of the Puma, the M26 and larger M36.  OTT also developed the Hunter special forces vehicle on the basis of the Samil-20 light truck.

On its website, OTT Technologies lists its new-build mine protected vehicle range as comprising the M26, M36 and LM13. Other products include a manual turret, MAN truck bodies, security/cash in transit vehicles and remanufactured Casspirs, Ratels and Samils.