ULA - Still Up in the Air

Still no word from FTC regulators and Penatgon officials on Boeing and Lockheed's proposed United Launch Alliance venture.

However, Reuters
reports that under a clause in the merger agreement of the military rocket launch operators, either company could terminate the deal if it doesn't win regulatory approval by March 31. (And as I mentioned, I have not seen the JV agreement.)

Meanwhile, industry folks and others sure are doing some talking. The Reuters update (which was picked up in the Washington Post and elsewhere; by the way, in January
some media outlets, although not others, were reporting the deal had received preliminary Pentagon approval) quotes one defense analyst saying there is "a real danger of this proposal unraveling because the government is likely to take steps that would undermine the business logic of the transaction."

And antitrust attorney Andrew Klevorn of Chicago's Stahl Klevorn & Solberg said "the merger review had been unusually long and there was 'a significant risk' that one of the companies could pull out." He also told the news service "there was still a chance the government could approve the deal by the end of the month under a consent decree that would mandate certain 'conduct' by the two companies."

(Hat tip: Keith Cowing at
NASA Watch.)

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