Austal share price on watch after latest ship delivery


Naval war ship

The Austal Limited (ASX: ASB) share price will be on watch tomorrow after the company provided a production update after market close today.

In the release, the shipbuilder announced that Austal USA has delivered its 11th Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) to the US Navy at the company’s shipyard in Mobile, Alabama.

What does Austal do?

Austal is an Australian shipbuilder and global defence contractor that designs, manufactures and supports high-performance vessels for commercial and defence customers worldwide.

The company currently has a market capitalisation of $1.47 billion and is trading on a price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 23.35. Austal shares are also trading on a trailing unfranked dividend yield of 1.46%.

The Austal share price has seen very strong growth over the past 12 months, up from $2.24 this time last year to be trading at $4.11 at the time of writing. This represents a tremendous 83% gain.

Details of the ship delivery to US Navy

The combat ship featured in today’s announcement, the future USS Kansas City (LCS 22), is the first Independence-class LCS to be delivered by Austal USA in 2020. This latest LCS delivery from Austal’s USA shipyard builds upon the company’s strong record in recent years. Austal USA has now delivered 11 of the 19 Independence-class LCS currently contracted.

The Independence-class LCS is a fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation.

Meanwhile, upgrades to the LCS program continue to take shape, both in production and post-delivery. Austal USA and General Dynamics Mission Systems teams recently integrated a new over-the-horizon missile system onto the USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10) prior to her deployment.

Five Independence-class Littoral Combat Ships (small surface combatants) are under various stages of construction at Austal USA.

Austal USA is also under contract to build 14 Expeditionary Fast Transport vessels (EPF) for the US Navy. The company has delivered 11 EPFs, while an additional two are in various stages of construction at the Mobile, Alabama shipyard.

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Motley Fool contributor Phil Harpur has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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