The defence technology SME sector – stocktaking and perspectives

The success of the German economic model is based, among other things, on its innovative SMEs, which can react quickly on the market. In principle, this also applies to the defence SME sector.

In view of the challenges and opportunities in connection with the special fund for the Bundeswehr, our Managing Director Nico Scharfe, who is also Chairman of the SME Initiative Group at the Förderkreis Deutsches Heer (FKH), presented a critical stocktaking and current perspectives at a parliamentary evening in Berlin, organised by the FKH at the beginning of September.

You can read it in full in an excerpt from griephan-briefe no. 36, in which it was first published on 9 September.

Among other things, Nico Scharfe notes that politics has achieved remarkable things.

With courage and drive, politicians have quickly adapted to the changed situation. In the interest of the country and the soldiers.

These adjustments will not be without consequences - for the politicians who made the start, for the contracting authorities and also for the companies that apply to be suppliers.

And the concern of all: How will the provided funds reach the soldier promptly in the form of good equipment?

All in all, despite the concerns of the defence technology SMEs that only the big contracts are being awarded and the SMEs are being left behind, the signals from politics are positive that things are moving forward. However, this does not mean that the traffic light is green for small and medium-sized enterprises.

The following recommendations may therefore be made:

  • More contracts should be awarded to small and medium-sized defence companies - and this number should increase every year.
    Success is measurable and controllable and will be reported on in the Armament Report.
  • More innovation - for technical superiority in operations. 
    A significantly higher allocation of R&D funds for strategic projects directly and straightforwardly to small and medium-sized enterprises. Specifically, where research and development is carried out.
  • More thinking in partnerships.
    Each individual cannot reach the goal alone. Everyone has roles and responsibilities, but without cooperation it will not work.

Read the critical stocktaking, current perspectives and recoomendations from Nico Scharfe in full in this excerpt from griephan-briefe no. 36.

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