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Lockheed Martin closes sale of unit for $815M

BETHESDA — Lockheed Martin Corp. said Tuesday it has completed the sale of its enterprise integration group business to private equity firm Veritas Capital for $815 million in cash.

Lockheed, which is based in Bethesda, Md., announced its plan to sell the group in June along with the Pacific Architects and Engineers unit to avoid potential problems over new government regulations for defense contractors.

Defense contracting reform legislation passed last year includes a provision designed to reduce conflicts of interest for contractors, many of which are huge and deeply involved in a broad range of government operations. Lawmakers were concerned that this could give companies access to nonpublic information that could help them win additional contracts.

For example, Lockheed could potentially be doing systems engineering for an intelligence agency while at the same time bidding on a satellite contract for that same agency. In addition to systems engineering, the EIG unit provides architecture and integration services for government customers.

Lockheed paid an undisclosed sum for the units in 2006. The two units accounted for about 3 percent of Lockheed’s annual revenue.

Its shares fell 40 cents to $68.24 in morning trading Tuesday.