REDONDO BEACH, Calif., July 31, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has signed a new U.S. Department of Defense Mentor-Protege agreement with the U.S. Air Force Mentor-Protege program office at Brooks City-Base, Texas.

The Mentor-Protege program encourages prime contractors to support small businesses in their efforts to increase participation in federal subcontracts and establish long-term relationships with prime contractors. Northrop Grumman has participated in the Mentor-Protege program since 1992. The company has assisted 90 small businesses under the Defense Department Mentor-Protege program and is currently participating in 20 active Mentor-Protege agreements.

Under the latest agreement, Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector will provide hands-on guidance to Jackson Aerospace Inc. (JAI) to further cultivate the potential of JAI's skills, capabilities, and its quality and delivery of performance. The main objective of the JAI/NGST Mentor-Protege program is to reduce the cost and cycle time associated with material acquisition on Defense Department programs.

"It is a pleasure to welcome Jackson Aerospace Inc. to Northrop Grumman Space Technology's Mentor-Protege family," said Bruce Gerding, vice president of Planning and Administration at Northrop Grumman Space Technology sector. "Northrop Grumman recognizes fully that a great deal of the intellectual capital in this country resides in small, entrepreneurial companies like Jackson Aerospace Inc. Given this recognition, and the tremendous value and leverage resulting from the relationship thus far, we are committed to building and sustaining this Mentor-Protege agreement with JAI."

Northrop Grumman will also work with California State University Los Angeles (Cal State L.A.) as the Minority Institution team member. Support of the proposed Mentor-Protege program will be facilitated by Dr. Paul Liu, professor of Technology in the college of engineering, computer science and technology, who will act as the program manager for this effort. Liu is an expert in manufacturing processes, quality control, lean manufacturing, production control, rapid prototyping and material sciences.

"We are hopeful the benefits of receiving the Mentor-Protege award will be far reaching," commented Benn S. Jackson III, president and quality management representative of JAI. "The program benefits the warfighter and also creates a new technology that will provide both time and cost savings and possibly create new jobs for the aerospace and defense industries."

JS Industries, doing business as Jackson Aerospace Inc., is a women-owned small business and was established in 1982. Headquartered in Gardena, Calif., JAI has 13 employees and its 2006 revenue was $4.0 million. JAI's core business is to distribute structural and mechanical hardware to the aerospace and defense industry, and provide value-added testing services to validate and verify supplier manufacturing processes. JAI has not previously participated in a Defense Department Mentor/Protege program.

Cal State L.A. was recently ranked among the nation's top engineering programs for the eighth year in a row by U.S. News & World Report in its 2007 edition of America's Best Colleges Guide. It is the only public undergraduate (non-Ph.D.) university in the greater Los Angeles area making the top of the list.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a $30 billion global defense and technology company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.

  CONTACT:  Erika Raney
          Northrop Grumman Space Technology
          (310) 812-2535
          erika.raney@ngc.com