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Saab buys UK AI company BlueBear with drone swarms and crewed-uncrewed teaming in mind

31st August 2023 - 18:00 GMT | by Damian Kemp in London


BlueBear's UAS have already been used in AI-powered swarm trials for the UK MoD. (Photo: UK MoD/Crown Copyright)

Saab has purchased UK AI company BlueBear which gives the Swedish company a substantial boost in the field of AI and swarming technology at a time when both areas are burgeoning and increasingly coming to the attention of militaries worldwide.

The purchase of BlueBear, which will be brought under Saab UK as a division, provides a further boost for the UK side of Saab which has grown substantially over the past 12 months.

Saab UK group managing director Dean Rosenfield said the division had more than doubled employee numbers in the past year.

‘Through consolidation and recruitment we added more than 100 and [we] increase employees to more than 400 with this acquisition,’ Rosenfield said.

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‘BlueBear fulfils one of the opportunities for growth and more importantly in the rapid prototyping and concept development areas and it is largely innovation-based.’

Saab is looking to use BlueBear’s experiences in AI and specifically swarming technology both in its own products, such as crewed-uncrewed teaming with its Gripen fighter aircraft and 9LV naval combat management system, and also those of partners.

BlueBear CEO Dr Yoge Patel highlighted that crewed-uncrewed teaming was likely to be a key area in the field.

‘We’ve seen an awful lot of manned/unammed teaming and nations that are progressing that and where the market opportunities are and this is definitely one of them,’ Patel said.

‘Having tangible technology that allows you to combine larger vehicles with a collection of smaller vehicles gives you that force mix that everyone is looking for [but there is] a lot of work to do internationally in terms of understanding where the value is in that, but a good part of the world is moving in that direction.’

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Damian Kemp


Damian Kemp

Damian Kemp has worked in the defence media for 25 years covering military aircraft, defence …

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