Vibrating with the special forces

Communication more than ever goes hand in hand with discretion, as demonstrated by the FEELTACT vibrating communication bracelet presented by the Novitact SME at the Special Operations Forces Innovation Network Seminar (SOFINS) being held this week at the Souge military base near Bordeaux in western France. The FEELTACT technology is based on a vibration/light signal combination […]

Nexter’s connected helmet

It’s been a long time since Nexter was associated only with “big machines”. On the contrary, the French systems integrator is opening its portfolio to light tactical systems, such as the FINDADFI connected headphones. Unveiled at Eurosatory 2016 and now at the demonstrator stage, FINDADFI is Nexter’s response to the “French special forces’ requirement for […]

What budget for which risks?

The question: “Defence industries, an asset for the economy?” posed by Le Cercle des économistes (The Economists’ Round-table) at a symposium held on 22 March in Paris, was not answered, but the 10-minute speeches made by General Pierre de Villiers, Chief of Staff of the French Armed Forces, and Laurent Collet-Billon, director of the DGA […]

Re-birth of French munitions sector

“A few months ago I would hardly have dared hope for this moment.” With these words, spoken on 17 March in Pont-de-Buis-Lès-Quimerch (Brittany), French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian declared the renaissance in France of a small caliber war munitions (5.56mm, 7.62mm and 9 mm) industry. “It is the rebirth of a sector that was […]

The Griffon has run

The prototype Griffon vehicle had its first run this week, FOB learned at the symposium organised in Paris yesterday by the Draguignan Infantry College. It will be evaluated by the French DGA procurement agency and the STAT, the army’s technical section, between April and October before they decide on a final production design.  The first example […]

Excellent 2016 for MBDA

“2016 was an excellent year.” So began Antoine Bouvier’s remarks to the media as he unveiled MBDA’s results for 2016: a turnover of €3bn which he expects to be able to boost to €4bn by 2020. The European missile manufacturer’s CEO said his group’s aim was to capture 25% of the global market, thereby keeping […]

Denmark chooses CAESAR

2017 has begun well for Nexter Systems which has just signed a second export contract for its CAESAR 155mm self-propelled cannon in the space of a month. Following on the heels of an Indonesian order for 18 additional systems, Denmark will procure 15 CAESARs to replace the 32 M109A3 Paladins in service since 1965. “It […]

Berlin slips from NATO spending target

With a 2017 budget up 7.3% to €37bn, €10bn for investment by 2020 and an army of 200,000 by 2024, the new trajectory announced in 2016 for Germany’s armed forces was enough – in theory – to arouse the envy of neighbouring armies. But new elements presented in a German 2018 Federal Budget draft should calm […]

Lockheed flying to MBDA’s rescue?

Will MBDA play the Lockheed Martin card? The European missile group is reported to be forming a new joint venture with the U.S. company in order to reassure the German government that it can complete a €4bn contract for the delivery of the MEADS air defence system, according to Reuters. The two groups behind the design of […]

The DGA is France’s main investor

Laurent Collet-Billon, the director of France’s DGA procurement agency, never forgets that he was once a rugby player and frequently refers to the game when explaining or commenting the DGA’s activities. His press conference earlier this week was no exception when, in order to explain that the DGA “is the leading investor in the nation” […]