The European all-domain defence company Saab has unveiled a strategic partnership and investment in Helsing, an emerging AI software specialist. 

This move, supported by GlobalData’s job and filings data, shows Saab’s position as a leader in artificial intelligence for the aerospace, defence, and security industries.

GlobalData’s job data reveals that Saab is on a hiring spree in the artificial intelligence field, with 1,610 active jobs, 2,457 jobs posted, and 2,021 jobs closed, positioning them at the forefront of AI recruitment in the industry.

Leading the AI revolution 

Helsing, founded in 2021, is known for its AI-based software-only approach, gaining traction across Europe. With offices in Germany, the United Kingdom, and France and a team of approximately 220 employees, Helsing has started to make waves in the AI defence landscape.

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Saab’s investment of €75m ($79.5) secures them a 5 percent stake in Helsing GmbH. This partnership is poised to change electronic warfare and surveillance capabilities for fighter aircraft and other sensors and command and control applications across all domains.

Micael Johansson, president and CEO of Saab, underlined the significance of this move, stating, “The investment in Helsing marks another milestone in Saab’s commitment to further bolster our capabilities and continuously improve our portfolio to meet the evolving needs of our customers.”

Dr Gundbert Scherf, co-CEO and co-founder of Helsing echoed this sentiment, emphasising the importance of partnerships with established defence companies: “Saab, as a renowned European all-domain defence company, is an ideal partner for our advanced software and AI solutions.”

Saab’s investment in Helsing is part of the latter’s recent funding round, led by venture capital firm General Catalyst. This alliance is set to unlock more potential of AI in defence, a field that Saab is actively embracing.

Saab’s expanding AI portfolio 

GlobalData’s data further reveals that Saab’s focus on AI is part of a broader trend in the aerospace, defence, and security industry. The acquisition of UK-based BlueBear and US-based CrowdAI, along with the investment in Helsing within the last 90 days, demonstrates Saab’s dedication to becoming a trailblazer in artificial intelligence.

What sets Saab apart is its unique position with investments in AI businesses across three of the top five countries for artificial intelligence jobs. CrowdAI is based in the United States, where 47% of all AI jobs originate in the aerospace, defence, and security sectors. BlueBear is in the UK, which accounts for 4% of AI jobs, and Helsing is in Germany, which claims 2% of AI jobs, according to GlobalData’s Job Analytics Database

Source: GlobalData

While Saab may need to catch up in terms of artificial intelligence filings compared to some industry players, according to GlobalData’s Company Filings Database, their consistent presence highlights their determination to shape the future of AI in defence. As the industry evolves, Saab’s investments and partnerships, evidenced by the Helsing deal, position them as a player in the global AI defence landscape.

Saab’s partnership with Helsing and their investment reflects Saab’s commitment to AI and signal their intention to lead innovation in AI-based defence solutions. With the support of GlobalData’s insights, it is clear that Saab is positioning itself well to change the aerospace, defence, and security industry through AI technologies.

Our signals coverage is powered by GlobalData’s Thematic Engine, which tags millions of data items across six alternative datasets — patents, jobs, deals, company filings, social media mentions and news — to themes, sectors and companies. These signals enhance our predictive capabilities, helping us to identify the most disruptive threats across each of the sectors we cover and the companies best placed to succeed.