Leidos Holdings Inc. announced this week that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire naval architecture and marine engineering firm Gibbs & Cox Inc. for $380 million in cash.

Headquartered in Arlington, Va., Gibbs & Cox has 525 employees. Over its 90-plus-year history, Gibbs & Cox has been a leader in maritime innovation and is on the frontlines of providing maritime solutions, Leidos said in its Feb. 23 fourth-quarter earnings release. Leidos is a Reston, Va.-based defense contractor. 

The deal extends Leidos into an attractive maritime market where the company is "under-penetrated" and adds valuable engineering talent (naval architects and digital engineers) to the team, the company said. It further positions Leidos for long-term growth in the autonomous maritime market – a market requiring tight integration of ship design and autonomy systems. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of fiscal year 2021, subject to customary closing conditions.

Gibbs & Cox has been the design agent for several military programs including the LCS-1 Freedom-class and the multimission surface combatant programs underway at Fincantieri Marinette Marine. In May, Fincantieri Marinette Marine was awarded the FFG(X) design and construction contract by the Navy. Gibbs & Cox will serve as the design agent on the program. According to the contract announcement, if all options are exercised, the cumulative value of the contract will be $5.5 billion.