Navatek Unveils New Vision and New Name - Martin Defense Group

Honolulu, HI, Sept. 25, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, Navatek LLC announces its official corporate name change to Martin Defense Group. The change from Navatek to Martin Defense Group is effective immediately and will be implemented across the company’s products and services throughout 2020.

The new name reflects the company’s commitment to driving technological innovation and helping shape the future of the nation’s defense industry. The company’s name change also reflects its goal of becoming a world leader in developing cutting-edge defense solutions.

Founded in Hawaii in 1979, Navatek had historically been a provider of naval architecture and modeling/simulation services. In late 2017, Martin Kao assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer, re-inventing the company’s business model to become a diversified defense contractor.

As the company’s visionary leader, Kao now sees new possibilities along with the new name. “While I respect and value Navatek’s history,” Kao said, “our re-branding as Martin Defense Group allows us to turn toward the future, and the opportunities we see to make a positive difference. Most importantly, it better reflects the Company’s mission to support our customers and ultimately the warfighters in harm’s way. We have a duty to innovate, rapidly apply emerging technologies and transition them to game changing capabilities that outpace our adversaries and make our nation safer. Our employees, along with our academic and industry partners, are committed to this mission.”

The growth of the new Martin Defense Group has been exponential. Since April of this year, the company has increased its employee total by over 60% while expanding its presence with offices in five new states – Ann Arbor, Michigan; Columbia, South Carolina; Bangor, Maine; Stillwater, Oklahoma; and Wichita, Kansas.

Each new location receives significant capital investments, resulting in at least 50 new highly-paid, full-time positions, allowing each state to employ and retain local talent and technical expertise, creating new STEM jobs and stimulating local economies. The company looks forward to continued opportunities for expansion across the United States.

In the latest phase of growth, the company opened its new Columbia, South Carolina office this summer with 10 full-time scientists and engineers, as well as 4 interns from the University of South Carolina and South Carolina State University. The demand for innovation in the defense industry will drive plans to expand the Columbia team to 60 employees over the next 30 months. In Maine, operations expanded this summer to nearly 40 engineers and scientists between the Bangor and Portland offices, with plans to grow to over 120 employees by the end of 2021.

During the summer of 2020, the company was awarded several new contracts in partnership with major research universities. In July, a $5.0 million Navy contract for research into 3D manufacturing was awarded with the University of Maine, and a $3.8 million contract for cyber physical systems research with the University of Rhode Island. In August, the Office of Naval Research awarded a $9.2 million contract for the research of power and energy systems and the development of digital twin prototypes with the University of South Carolina, and a $4.8 million contract for data model fusion research with the University of Michigan.

Gary Ambrose, the company’s Chief Operating Officer, emphasizes building academic partnerships during this period of rapid growth. “We are committed to partnering with leading research universities across the country,” Ambrose said, “and providing students and graduates with opportunities to work on defense projects that have a strategic impact on how we defend our nation, fight and win. We will help build the nation’s next generation of science, technology, and engineering innovators while rapidly applying innovative solutions for our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines.”

For further information, please contact Jennifer Oliver, Communications Director.

About Martin Defense Group

Martin Defense Group provides research and development capabilities for the Department of Defense, NASA, and other government agencies. Historically a provider of naval architecture and modeling and simulation services, its portfolio has diversified to encompass digital twins, power and energy systems, unmanned vehicles, cyber security, robotics, autonomy, AI/ML, data science, inflatables, composites, and additive manufacturing.

Founded in Hawaii in 1979 as Navatek, the company, now bearing the name of its leader and CEO Martin Kao, has offices in Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Virginia.


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