Here is a look at Britain's BAE Systems and Airbus owner EADS who are in talks to create a combined group worth $45 billion, overtaking Boeing as the world's biggest aerospace and defense company in sales.
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BAE Systems is Europe's biggest defense contractor and a Top 10 player in the U.S. market, by far the world's largest. It's a global defense, aerospace and security company delivering products and services for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology and support services.
BAE IN NUMBERS 2011
Revenues 19.154 billion pounds ($30.70 billion)
Operating profit 1.58 billion pounds ($2.53 billion)
Earnings per share (EPS) 37 pence
The EADS Group united top aerospace firms from Germany, France and Spain in 2000 and now boasts more than 170 sites worldwide.
In addition to commercial aircraft builder Airbus, it includes military planemaker Airbus Military, satellite builder Astrium and helicopter unit Eurocopter.
EADS IN NUMBERS 2011
Revenues 49.128 billion euros ($63.71 billion)
EBIT 1.696 billion euros ($2.20 billion)
Earnings per share (EPS) 1.27 euros
Sources Reuters, company websites
(Reporting by David Cutler, London Editorial Reference Unit)