Ultra Electronics is a British arms company with its headquarters in Greenford, Middlesex. It is one of the world’s top 100 arms-producing companies. It has been investigated by the Serious Fraud Office over suspected corruption in Algeria.
Ultra exhibits at Turkey’s IDEF arms fair. In its write-up for IDEF, the arms company stated that it supports “a range of programmes” in Turkey, “including the Turkish national MMU project.” The MMU project is the Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) TF-X fighter jet program.
Providing Turkey with Surface Ship Torpedo Defence (SSTD) systems
Ultra Electronics’ equipment has been key to Turkey’s MILGEM national warship program. In 2007, it secured a contract to provide its Sea Sentor Surface Ship Torpedo Defence (SSTD) systems for Turkish navy vessels. The contract was awarded to Ultra Electronics by Turkish government-owned arms company Havelsan.
According to Ultra, the Sea Sentor “detects and locates incoming torpedoes, gives tactical advice on ship manoeuvres and provides capabilities to decoy or defeat the torpedo threat.”
Tank-landing ship contract
Sonobuoy contract for the Turkish navy
In 2006, Ultra was awarded a contract by French arms company Thales to supply sonobuoy receivers for the Turkish navy’s MELTEM II maritime patrol and surveillance aircraft program. Sonobuoys are deployed in the sea to detect submarines.
Edinburgh university divestment
In 2013, students and campaigners were successful in persuading Edinburgh university to stop investing in Ultra Electronics. Ultra has provided the navigation controls for US Predator and Reaper drones which have been used on covert missions to murder people in Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen.
- Demonstrate and take action at Ultra Electronics’ offices and arms factories. Its head office is in Greenford, but you can also find Ultra in Cheltenham, High Wycombe, Cambridge, Rugeley and Preston. You can find Ultra’s addresses here.
- Pressure the UK government not to issue export licenses to Ultra Electronics for arming Turkey.
- If you’re a student, take inspiration from Edinburgh students and pressure your university to divest from Ultra.
- If you’re a trade unionist, ask your trade union to support the Stop Arming Turkey campaign.
Basic company information
Revenue: US $0.89 billion (2018)
Number of employees: Over 4,500 globally
Listed on: London Stock Exchange
Head office: Greenford, Middlesex
Business: Ultra states that it operates as “a Tier 3 (sub-system) and occasionally a Tier 2 (systems) provider in the maritime, C4ISTAR-EW (command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, acquisition and reconnaisance – electronic warfare), military and commercial aerospace, nuclear and industrial sensors markets.”
It states that its “core markets are the ‘five-eyes’ nations: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK and USA.”