FTC reaches settlement in Hughes/Rockwell, Boeing/Lockheed conflict
Competing teams composed of Hughes Danbury Optical Systems (HDOS, Danbury, CT)/Rockwell International (Anaheim, CA) and Boeing Co. (Seattle, WA)/Lockheed Martin Corp. (Bethesda, MD) have settled a conflict in the competition for a $700 million Air Force adaptive-optics contract. Xinetics Inc. (Littleton, MA) was originally the exclusive mirror supplier for the Hughes/Rockwell team, while Itek Optical Systems (Lexington, MA) had an exclusive contract with the Boeing/Lockheed team. The recent HDOS acquisition of Itek raised the possibility that Itek could wind u¥as mirror supplier for both teams, eliminating price competition and giving HDOS access to sensitive design and cost information from the competing proposal. Under the terms of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) settlement, HDOS will remove the exclusivity clause from its contract with Xinetics, affording Boeing/Lockheed a second mirror source. The settlement will also prohibit HDOS from accessing proprietary information on the Boeing/Lockheed design through Itek.