Cognizant Technologies (NASDAQ:CTSH), a leading information technology services provider, has reached an agreement to acquire digital engineering firm Belcan for nearly $1.3 billion in a cash and stock transaction, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The acquisition is poised to significantly enhance Cognizant's presence in the aerospace, defense, space, and automotive sectors.

As part of the deal, Belcan will continue to operate under the leadership of its CEO, Lance Kwasniewski, and will function as a unit within Cognizant.

This arrangement ensures continuity in Belcan's operations and strategic direction, according to the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity ahead of an official announcement expected later today.