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Moog's expansion takes off with lift from F-35

The steel framework is up for an expansion at Moog Inc.'s Elma campus, a project fueled by the company's work for the U.S. military's F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

"It's starting to look like a real building," said John Scannell, Moog's chairman and CEO.

The Elma-based maker of motion control equipment expects to complete the $32.6 million expansion early next year.

"I think it's a real sign of the investments we're making here locally in the Buffalo region, and it's response to the growth of the F-35."

Moog actually laid the groundwork for its work on the fighter jet program about two decades ago.

"We won that [F-35] program back in the early 2000s, and we were probably working on various demonstrators for it for four or five years before that," Scannell said. "What looks like now we're building in response to a ramp-up, that's been literally 20 years in the making, so this is a long-haul business for us."

And it's not the only expansion Moog is carrying out locally. The company is also expanding in the Town of Wheatfield, where the company has a test facility for space propulsion equipment.

Moog on Friday reported a 4 percent increase in its profits for the quarter that ended June 30 to $41.53 million. Its quarterly sales rose 10.5 percent, to $692 million, from a year ago.

"We're seeing strength across all of our major markets," Scannell said.

Like many other manufacturers, Moog is keeping its eye on the battle over tariffs.

"So far, we've not seen any impact," Scannell said. "But if that continues and gets worse, that obviously is not a positive for business. What I say to folks is, I'm not taking any political sides on it. Just tariffs in general, when you're in an international business like we are, are just not good for business. It just causes a lot of uncertainty."

Moog reported earnings per diluted share of $1.13, just below the $1.14 analysts had expected. Moog's stock was down 6 percent in Friday afternoon trading on Nasdaq.


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