A British soldier trains in urban environment using Saab's Deployable Tactical Engagement Simulation. Saab wants to sell the system to the French. (Jerker Johansson/Saab AB)
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PARIS — As France gears up to spend on new training systems, Saab has set its sights on winning a slice of the work by supplying the same instrumented Army training system it has sold to the British Army.
“The French need instrumented training and they have seen what we are doing with the UK,” said Claes-Peter Cederlof, Saab’s vice president for land systems in Western Europe, who was speaking at the Eurosatory show here Monday.
France is due to issue an request for proposals by year end for instrumented Army training services at a training area in France, which could be worth around £30 million (US $50.9 million), part of a reported overall planned £200 million training spending program.
Speaking at the show, Cederlof said Saab’s Deployable Tactical Engagement Simulator (DTES) had already debuted in France, thanks to the British Army. After being used at the UK training facility at Salisbury, the British Army asked Saab to provide the system when it trained at the Centre d’Entrainement aux Actions en Zone Urbaine (CENZUB), a French urban warfare training facility in northern France.
“The British said they wanted to train at CENZUB and asked us if we could instrument it,” said Cederlof. “The French observed the exercise.”
The staff brought in to set up the system had previously worked in Kenya on Saab’s training contract with the British Army there, where, under the TTESIK UK contract, Saab has provided simulation, infrastructure and instrumentation for exercises up to brigade level for the past three years.
That set-up, which uses Saab’s DTES, has trained 7,000 soldiers a year over the last three years.
Cederlof said a three-year extension to the Kenya contract would be signed on Tuesday.