BAE Systems has announced the appointment of Alistair Castle as Vice-President and General Manager of its India operations, with effect from January 1, 2016.
Castle moves from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia where he is the Regional Vice President responsible for Group Business Development in South East Asia. He succeeds Mark Simpkins who concludes his second tenure in India and takes up new responsibilities based in the Middle East. In this new role, Castle will continue to report to John Brosnan, Regional Managing Director, India & South East Asia.
Alistair Castle will be responsible for leading business operations for BAE Systems in India. He will join the BAE Systems India Board, chaired by Deepak Parekh, Chairman of HDFC Ltd.
Announcing the appointment, John Brosnan said: "Alistair comes to India at a very exciting time for the sector and for the Company. We are on the cusp of launching new partnerships and strengthening existing ones to Make in India and Alistair will serve a critical role in shaping our future growth in India."
Alistair Castle said, "I'm delighted to join our team in India and help deliver on our commitment to our customers and the Armed Forces."
Mark Simpkins, who moves to the Middle East, commented: "I feel very privileged to have served two tenures in India and very proud of the building blocks we have put in place to address the plethora of opportunities the country's dynamic defence sector provides."
Castle takes charge when the Company is poised to reinvigorate its efforts to support the Government's Make in India programme through strategic partnerships and alliances. The Company has proposed a state-of-the-art Assembly, Integration & Testing facility in India with an Indian industrial partner for the delivery of the M777 Ultra-Light Howitzers. The Indian Government is set to purchase this weapon system from the United States Government. As part of the sale, BAE Systems has also committed to deliver a US$200 Million Offset package in India.
BAE Systems is also looking forward to working with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for 20 made-in-India Hawk advanced jet trainer aircraft for the Indian Air Force's prestigious aerobatics team, Surya Kiran. This will be the third batch of the Hawk Mk132 acquired by the Indian Air Force. The Company is also expanding the scope of its partnership with HAL by exploring long-term sustainable business opportunities globally. Earlier this year, BAE Systems signed a Memorandum of Understanding with HAL for Hawk Mk132 upgrades, the development of the combat Hawk for Indian and export markets, and support solutions for the Jaguar and Hawk fleets.
Alistair Castle joined predecessor Company British Aerospace in 1990 and has held a number of positions in the United Kingdom including in the Company's Military Aircraft & Information business. He has held overseas roles relating to export sales and support solutions in South Africa, Romania and Thailand. In December 2012, he moved to Malaysia where his current role covers South East Asia with key business winning activities in seven markets. He has an MBA from the Henley Management College, an MA in International Studies from King College, London and attended The Royal College of Defence Studies in 2008.