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Raytheon Acquires Visual Analytics

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Raytheon Company (RTN - Free Report) has acquired Visual Analytics Inc. for an undisclosed amount. This privately held firm will now become a part of the company's Intelligence, Information and Services business.

The firm provides data analytics, decision support, and information sharing software solutions to scrutinize money laundering, financial crimes, border security, frauds, and racket in domestic and international, commercial and government markets.

Raytheon is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, security and civil markets throughout the world. Currently, the company has extensive know-how of managing large data sets. This transaction will strengthen the company’s potential by adding advanced analytic products and knowledge management solutions.

Visual Analytics will support the company in meeting the data analytics, data visualization and information sharing needs of its customers. Besides transforming data into actionable intelligence, the firm will allow the company to create innovative visualization offerings for its customers.

This marks the first acquisition by the company in 2013. However, in 2012, Raytheon undertook several acquisitions that bolstered the company’s capabilities in diverse fields.

In Dec 2012, the company acquired the Government Solutions business of SafeNet Inc. which was a privately held data security firm. This acquisition helped the company in supporting the U.S. DoD to fulfill its growing need for protected and encrypted data. Prior to that, the company completed the acquisition of Teligy, Inc., that has extended Raytheon's cyber security offerings in wireless communications, vulnerability analysis, reverse engineering and custom kernel software/device driver development.

These acquisitions help the company in performing its various tasks. BBN Technologies, now a subsidiary of Raytheon, was acquired in 2009. Last month, BBN Technologies received supplementary funding from the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity to carry on with its research and development activity under the Foresight and Understanding from Scientific Exposition program.

Raytheon is one of the best-positioned companies among the large-cap defense players because of its non-platform-centric focus. Looking forward, with its newly realigned segments, the company enjoys strong order bookings and order backlog, an improving balance sheet, growing cash flow and operational improvements.

However, like its peers General Dynamics Corp. (GD - Free Report) and Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT - Free Report) , Raytheon is also affected by the likely cuts in the U.S. defense budget, the fate of high-cost programs, risks related to key project executions and order cancellations.  The company presently retains a short-term Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

In the near term, we would advise investors to accumulate its short-term Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) peer API Technologies Corp. .

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