Raytheon Company has entered a mentoring agreement with Phoenix Products Inc (PPI) for Naval Strike Missile (NSM) transport containers for the US Navy.

The companies signed the $1.6m US Navy contract agreement under the US Department of Defense mentor-protege programme.

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Under the three-year agreement, PPI will build NSM transport containers for the navy.

Under the mentor-protege programme, Raytheon and Oakwood University will provide training and support to PPI in technical, quality and management processes.

The programme incentivises large businesses to enhance technical and operating capabilities of smaller businesses to enable them to secure DoD contracts.

“NSM production is bringing jobs and revenue to a growing network of US suppliers.”

Raytheon Air Warfare Systems vice-president Kim Ernzen said: “Raytheon is partnering with small and disadvantaged businesses to help them succeed and contribute to our industry.

“NSM production is bringing jobs and revenue to a growing network of US suppliers, and it is all the more meaningful when the work makes a significant impact in a local community.”

In May last year, Raytheon received a contract from the US Navy to manufacture the weapon system for littoral combat ships and future frigates.

Designed by Norwegian firm Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, NSM is a long-range, precision strike missile that can detect and destroy land and sea targets at ranges of more than 100nm.

PPI president Tom Wilson said: “The programme will enable PPI to take the next steps to be a fully capable aerospace container and ground support equipment manufacturer.”

Raytheon seeks to leverage PPI’s experience in manufacturing similar containers.