Thales Gains Back Market Share with New Radio Contract

by Greg Giaquinto, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Thales has been awarded a $37 million contract from the U.S. Army to equip the new rapidly deployable security force assistance brigades (SFABs) with the PRC-148C Improved Multiband Inter-Intra Team Radio (IMBITR), establishing it as the first dual-channel, certified networking radio to enhance communications at the tactical edge, providing interoperability for joint and coalition forces.

According to Thales, the solution delivers cutting-edge tactical communications that address the Army’s network modernization initiatives and provides soldiers with the tactical advantage necessary to achieve mission success in both dismounted and mounted vehicular configurations. Through a high-throughput networking waveform, the IMBITR provides Special Operations-equivalent equipment suitable for demanding expeditionary environments, a capability sought by the Army.

The core mission of the SFABs is to provide a cross-functional advisory capability in support of theater security cooperation activities and build partner capacity worldwide, allowing quick response to the requirements of theater combatant commanders.

This award is a major win for Thales Defense & Security Inc.  The PRC-148’s major competitor is Harris Corp’s PRC-152.  Under the now defunct Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) program, Harris had a slight upper hand over Thales when competing for handheld radio contracts.  When the JTRS program was canceled, the PRC-152 still held a marked advantage. With the introduction of the PRC-148C, Thales Defense & Security has the potential to take back some of the market share it lost to the PRC-152.



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