Saab AB (originally Svenska Aeroplan AB, later just SAAB and Saab Group) is a Swedish aerospace and defence company, founded in 1937. Headquartered in Stockholm, the development and the manufacturing is undertaken in Linköping. Saab produced automobiles from 1947 until 1990 when the automobile division was spun off as Saab Automobile, a joint venture with General Motors. The joint venture ended in 2000 when GM took complete ownership. Between 1968 and 1995 the company was in a merger with commercial vehicle manufacturer Scania-Vabis, known as Saab-Scania. The two were de-merged in 1995 by the new owners, Investor AB. Despite the demerger, both Saab and Scania share the right to use the griffin logo, which originates from the coat of arms of the Swedish region of Scania.
|Type||Publicly traded Aktiebolag|
|Nasdaq Stockholm: SAAB B|
|Industry||Aerospace and Defence|
|Predecessor||SAAB/Saab AB (1937–68)|
|Founded||Trollhättan, Sweden (1937)|
|Founders||Marcus Wallenberg Jr.|
Sven Gustaf Wingqvist
|Marcus Wallenberg (Chairman)|
Micael Johansson (President & CEO)
|Products||Air Traffic Control systems|
|Revenue||39.154 billion kr (2021)|
|2.888 billion kr (2021)|
|2.025 billion kr (2021)|
|Total assets||65.039 billion kr (2021)|
|Total equity||23.249 billion kr (2021)|
through Investor AB and Wallenberg Investments AB
(38.9%; 48.4% votes)
Number of employees
"Svenska Aeroplan AktieBolag" (Swedish for "Swedish Aeroplane Company Limited") (SAAB) was founded in 1937 in Trollhättan, with the merger of Svenska Aero AB (SAAB) and Linköping based ASJA the headquarters moved to Linköping. The style "Saab" replaced "SAAB" around 1950.
The basic initial development was the problems for the Swedish government to get quality military aircraft delivered at the beginning of the Second World War. The final trigger was the inability to get a large number of Seversky P-35 delivered from the United States. From then on the Swedish government focused on establishing domestic production and development of military aircraft which Saab became involved in, a policy that has continued to this day.
Originally manufacturing aircraft, the company sought ways in which to diversify its business. Before the Second World War, a majority of cars in Sweden were imported from the United States. The US car manufacturers have been producing tanks during the war, and the US domestic market took all the US car production in the late 1940s. Hence there was a large supply shortage of private cars in Europe and Sweden, and buyers were facing waiting lists of years on new cars. In the late 1940s, Saab began manufacturing cars at its Saab Automobile division, based in Trollhättan. The first car was the Saab 92; full-scale production started 12 December 1949, based on the prototype Ursaab.
In the late 1950s Saab ventured into the computer market with Datasaab. The company was a result partly of the need to make a computer that would be small enough to mount in an aeroplane as navigational equipment. During the 1960s several computers were developed and sold to European countries, for uses such as banking. The aircraft computer (CK 37) was used in 1971 in the Viggen. The company was sold in 1975 to Sperry UNIVAC, while Saab retained its flight computer development.
In May 1965, the company name was changed to Saab AB to reflect its broad range of activities.
In 1991 Investor AB completed a leveraged buyout of Saab-Scania AB. Investor AB acquired all the outstanding shares in Saab-Scania for approximately SEK 21 billion. Saab-Scania became a wholly owned subsidiary of Investor AB and the company was de-listed.
In 1995 Saab-Scania was divided by Investor AB into two independent companies, de-merging into Scania AB and Saab AB. The intention by Investor AB was to broaden ownership in the two companies later. Following the sale of 50% of the car division Saab Automobile AB to General Motors, the main reason behind the merger with lorry manufacturer Scania-Vabis in 1968 had disappeared.
Also in 1995 Saab Military Aircraft and British Aerospace (now BAE Systems) formed the joint venture company Saab-BAe Gripen AB, to manufacture, market and support Gripen internationally. This co-operation was extended in 2001 with the formation of Gripen International for the same purpose. From 1998 until 2005 British Aerospace/BAE was the largest shareholder in Saab following its acquisition of a 35% stake from Investor AB. In January 2005, BAE Systems reduced its shareholding to 20%. Investor AB maintained a 20% share.
16 November 1999, Saab announced its intention is to purchase Celsius AB and the acquisition was concluded by early March 2000.
In December 2005 Saab joined the Dassault nEUROn project as a major partner.
In October 2008 the company announced its intention to merge its operations with that of Simrad Optronics. The new unit will develop high-tech optronics products and will be headquartered in Norway, although other details of the new arrangement have not been finalized.
In 2010 the company restructured from fifteen business units into five business areas; Aeronautics, Dynamics, Electronic Defence Systems, Security and Defence Solutions, and Support and Services. According to Saab the restructuring was undertaken to become more market and customer oriented.
In March 2010, BAE Systems sold half of its 20% stake in the company to Investor AB, which then became the major shareholder. In June 2011, the British company sold its remaining stake bringing its 16-year involvement in Saab to an end.
As of August 2020, Investor AB owns a 30.16% stake in the company (39.69% of the voting rights) and is the top owner.
The main focus of aircraft production is fighter aircraft. Saab has been making aircraft since the 1930s, and the jet predecessors of the JAS 39 Gripen were the Tunnan, the Lansen, the Draken and the Viggen. The last civilian models made by Saab were the Saab 340 and Saab 2000. Both were mid-range turboprop-powered airliners. The development and the manufacturing of these aircraft is undertaken in Linköping.
In May 2019, Saab announced plans to locate a new U.S. manufacturing operation in Discovery Park District Aerospace on the west side of the Purdue University campus. The facility will do the final assembly of the T-X advanced jet trainer, which is a plane developed by Boeing and Saab for the United States Air Force.
Aeronautics offers airborne systems, related subsystems, Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and aerostructures. The business area Aeronautics is responsible for airframe structures for JAS 39 Gripen, and whole sections for Airbus, Boeing and NH90; & system development of the JAS 39 Gripen and the Skeldar VTOL UAV. Aeronautics is also partner in the European joint UAV-project Dassault nEUROn, where Saab develop Avionics and is responsible for the overall architecture and design. Marketing and support of the JAS 39 Gripen fighter jet is also included in the Aeronautics business area.
Dynamics offers ground combat weapons, missile systems, torpedoes, sensor systems, unmanned underwater vehicles such as Sabertooth and signature management systems, remotely operated vehicles for armed forces as well as civil security applications.
Surveillance offers airborne surveillance solutions (including GlobalEye, Saab 2000 Erieye) AEW&C and fighter radar, ground-based and naval radar (including the Giraffe radar range), electronic warfare (including IDAS and ESTL) and combat systems and C4I solutions. 
Industrial Products and Services was established on 1 January 2015 and comprises the business units Combitech, Avionics Systems, Aerostructures, Traffic Management, Vricon as well as the development of product ideas that fall outside of Saab's core business.
The business units within Industrial Products and Services differ from Saab's other operations by their focus on business-to-business (B2B) customers or because they are not dependent on Saab's principal end-customers. Other business areas within Saab have a customer base largely consisting of public authorities. With different customer groups come different management strategies and priorities. Opportunities to strengthen these operations in the long term are greater in the new organisation. Industrial Products and Services will work with individual growth strategies for each business unit.
Support and Services offer maintenance, integrated support solutions, field facilities, logistics and regional aircraft maintenance.
The Saab Barracuda LLC facility in Lillington, North Carolina, manufactures signature management products and provides customized services. Foremost among the camouflage, concealment and deception products is the Ultra Lightweight Camouflage Net System (ULCANS) which provides multi-spectral protection against visual, near infrared, thermal infrared and broadband radar detection. ULCANS is fielded with the U.S. Army and other Department of Defense organizations and is available in both woodland and desert versions. Saab Barracuda is one of only two qualified suppliers of ULCANS in North America, and currently has a competed $US1.76 billion contract, along with GMA Cover Corp.
Saab 18B (B 18B)
Saab 32 Lansen (J 32B)
Saab 91C (Sk 50C)
Saab 29 Tunnan (J 29F)
Saab 37 Viggen (SF 37)
Saab Gripen (JAS 39)
Saab 340 with Erieye radar
’As of July 2, Saab completed a full takeover of Kockums [the designer of Australia’s existing Collins class submarines] which is now Saab Kockums and the Swedish Kingdom now controls the intellectual property for the Collins class submarines’.
Saab is investigating the design of the next generation fighter that will someday eventually replace the Gripen. […] a small research program that SAAB is conduction with the University of Linköping. […] It looks similar to the Gripen and the main difference is the V-tail.
Sweden's decades-long history of innovation in the aerospace sector is also evidenced by its Generic Future Fighter (GFF) concept. Developed by the Fluid and Mechatronic Systems division at Linköping University's department of Management and Engineering, the design has a Gripen-like fuselage with canards and canted tails.
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