20 Jan 21. Sensor specialist HENSOLDT has acquired the Austrian company SAIL LABS, a leading provider of AI-based Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) solutions. With this step, HENSOLDT completes its sensor portfolio with intelligent solutions for the digital space and thus takes a further step towards becoming one of the leading data analysis houses in the security and defence sector in Germany.
Thomas Müller, CEO of HENSOLDT, says, “National security matters increasingly include issues of smart data collection and analysis. Therefore, governments and security agencies increasingly invest in these capabilities. Smart ISR and Smart Spectrum Dominance will become standard equipment in many security and defence solutions. With the acquisition of SAIL LABS, we continue our strategy of consistently investing in key technologies that will strengthen our position as a leading European champion in the field of defence and security electronics.”
Marian Rachow, CEO of HENSOLDT Cyber and Head of HENSOLDT Ventures, says, “We are delighted to welcome the employees of SAIL LABS to the HENSOLDT family. The acquisition underlines our ambition to become the German technology leader in data analytics and cyber. So far, we have developed groundbreaking technologies such as the highly secure operating system TRENTOS or the RISC-V processor MiG-V primarily in-house. With SAIL LABS’ AI technology, we are now investing in a digital platform approach for the first time, which we will now consistently develop further for our customers.”
Celia Pelaz, Head of Spectrum Dominance & Airborne Solutions Division underlines the importance of this acquisition for HENSOLDT’s Spectrum Dominance strategy, “The electromagnetic spectrum and cyberspace are no longer just a means of communicating or sensing the environment; they have become an operational space of warfare. And mastering this new space has become an indispensable capability for our armed forces. Expanding our signal intelligence capabilities to include cyber intelligence applications is a key element in providing our customers with solutions for comprehensive spectrum dominance, covering both the electromagnetic spectrum and cyberspace.”
Leading solution for OSINT analysis
Founded in Vienna in 1999, SAIL LABS is considered one of the leading providers of OSINT solutions based on artificial intelligence (AI). OSINT refers to the evaluation of all publicly accessible data, both on TV, radio and the surface web as well as in social media and the deep web. SAIL LABS technology can collect, index, analyse and visualise all this data. A core element of the technology is automatic speech recognition and the associated analysis of data in more than 30 source languages. Specific fields of application are the identification of media false news or disinformation campaigns or the early identification of sources of danger for soldiers on a mission.
Scalable platform for intelligent data analysis
At HENSOLDT, SAIL LABS will form the core of the HENSOLDT Analytics division, a scalable sensor platform for intelligent mass data analyses that supports states, authorities, and armed forces in integrating traditional telecommunications and electronic reconnaissance (signals intelligence) and OSINT. The goal is to intelligently analyse the collected data and generate an overarching situation overview in real time in order to be able to make decisions on a sound basis. These multi-intelligence systems significantly increase the range of sensors with little effort. This way, it is possible to provide comprehensive sensor solutions for optical or radar-based monitoring of an operational area at close range up to the real-time display of a situation picture across an entire region.
BATTLESPACE Comment: This acquisition by HENSOLDT of an AI specialist company will not be the last for HENSOLDT to bulk up its advanced technology offering for its existing sensor business. Expect other majors to follow suit throughout 20121 as the use of Cloud, AI and Machine Leaning becomes mainstream. US major Viasat has been developing or buying advanced technologies for some time as have Mercury Systems Inc. and Curtiss-Wright.