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A Swedish Air Force specialist inspects a Saab JAS 39 Gripen fighter during the AFX 18 exercise at Amari military air base, Estonia. File photo: REUTERS/INTS KALNINS
A Swedish Air Force specialist inspects a Saab JAS 39 Gripen fighter during the AFX 18 exercise at Amari military air base, Estonia. File photo: REUTERS/INTS KALNINS

Swedish defence group Saab is betting on a sales boost from the country’s rapidly changing attitudes towards joining the military alliance Nato.

Unthinkable just a few months ago, Swedish lawmakers are now intensively discussing a potential application to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization as public support for such a move hit new heights this month. For Saab, it’s “hard to see anything negative with that from an industrial perspective,” CEO Micael Johansson said in a phone interview after reporting first-quarter results. 

“You become a part of the inner circle, and so you can access that market in a more equitable way,” the CEO said. 

While Saab is already selling products to some of the countries within the alliance, Nato membership would make it easier to compete for contracts within sensitive areas such as information handling, advanced missile systems and sensors. “It’s often the defence industry within that club that gets to deliver,” Johansson said. 

Still, the Swedish company is enjoying rising demand particularly within its Surveillance and Dynamics units, which sell products such as radars, underwater systems and simulation systems. The spike in demand might show up in Saab’s order books in nine to 12 months from now, according to the CEO.

More stories like this are available on bloomberg.com

Picture: BLOOMBERG.
Picture: BLOOMBERG.
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