David Smith Out as Vice President of EMS Defense & Space

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WASHINGTON — Less than two weeks after reporting 30 percent growth in its Defense & Space division, EMS Technologies of Atlanta disclosed that the sector’s vice president and general manager, David A. Smith, is no longer with the company.

In an Aug. 17 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, EMS said Smith and the company had “mutually agreed to terminate his service” effective immediately. Neilson A. Mackay, EMS executive vice president and chief operating officer, will oversee the Defense & Space division on an interim basis, the company said.

No further details were provided in the filing.

In an e-mailed response to a request for comment Aug. 25, EMS spokeswoman Anne Wainscott-Sargent said Smith’s departure reflects a shift in company focus that places more emphasis on providing Internet connectivity to aircraft.“David’s experience and skills were in the classic defense ‘program’ environment,” she said. “As our broader aero business has developed, we are looking to expand Defense & Space’s focus into products and markets as well. We’ve concluded that approach would require someone with a different set of experiences and skills from David.”

Smith took the reins of EMS’s space and defense business in April 2007. Previously he had served as chief executive of an Australian defense company.

On Aug. 5, EMS’s Defense & Space division, which specializes in electronic subsystems and radio frequency gear for aircraft, satellites and other platforms, reported revenue of $25.2 million for the 2009 second quarter, an increase of 30 percent over the same period a year earlier. The company attributed the growth primarily to military aircraft antenna systems but said substantial additional revenue was “derived from major commercial anti-jam and national satellite programs.”

“During the second quarter, EMS continued to position itself for additional growth in radar and net-centric communications, along with space markets,” Paul Domorski, the company’s president and chief executive, said in a statement Aug. 5. He said the emphasis on situational awareness and communications technologies in the Pentagon’s 2010 budget request “bodes well for EMS.”

Overall, EMS, whose other products include commercial satellite communications equipment and computers, reported revenue of $96.9 million for the quarter, up 19 percent from the second quarter of 2008. Net profit for the quarter, at $4.8 million, was up 45 percent from a year ago, the company said.