Strike! Enhanced NATO adds ASX-listed anti-drone weapons maker to the must-have shopping list
NATO (The North Atlantic Treaty), which as of this week almost includes the Armed to the Teeth Swedes and the Frightening Finnish, just put mild-mannered Australian anti-drone killing DroneShield (ASX:DRO) on its list of weapons worth acquiring.
NATO members gathered on Tuesday (overnight) for a two-day summit in Vilnius, amid calls from Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky to confirm Ukraine as a de-facto member.
Sweden’s NATO bid suddenly appears set to go forward after a last-minute reversal from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, one of the last and largest obstacles to Swedish membership.
Meantime, in Ukraine, air defences fended off an overnight Russian drone attack on Kyiv.
Whether or not those air defences included DRO’s Drone Gun Tactical are above my security clearance.
According to DRO itself, “several (new) products have been assigned a NATO Stock Number (NSN)”. That means they’re on a terrifying NATO brochure somewhere which the generals pore over to select what things do the best defensive and offensive damage.
This follows up on the earlier NSN assignment for DroneGun Tactical (5865661650137) in February 2019, which the company says “significantly contributed, and continues to contribute, towards that product becoming one of DroneShield’s best-selling items.”
For all non-NATO weapons acquireres and suppliers, an NSN is a 13-digit numeric code, identifying all the “standardised material items of supply” as they have been recognised by all NATO countries including United States Department of Defense, and allows for any of the 31 NATO militaries to purchase the items on a “military catalogue” basis, significantly simplifying the procurement process.
The assignment of an NSN is also relevant to non-NATO customers in that it is considered to signify that the product has achieved a certain level of acceptance by the world’s most discerning military customers, the members of NATO and NATO’s allies.
DRO is quietly expecting that the receipt of these additional NSNs will “assist its sales efforts” in both NATO and non-NATO countries.
Image: DroneShield’s DroneGun Tactical
The NATO win follows last week’s operational update highlighted by a follow-on two-year R&D contract (with a total value of $9.9 million) by a Five Eyes Department of Defence (DoD).
“Approximately $4.5 million is due in the September and December 2023 quarters.”
Five Eyes refers to the evil-sounding alliance of Anglo armaments and spies and stuff. It’s a formerly hush-hush but now open defence/intelligence alliance between the US, Canada, UK, Australia and NZ. NO French is not their motto. Although…
Anyway, that award follows DroneShield materially completing the $3.8 million contract announced 4 June 2021 with the DoD, with a final milestone payment expected later on this month.
Oleg Vornik, DroneShield’s CEO, said that follow-on contracts are “the ultimate customer measure of our performance.”
“As an Australian sovereign industrial capability business, DroneShield is proud and pleased to continue undertaking multi-year contracts of increasing size with this customer.
“This is the largest long-term contract received by DroneShield to date, significantly larger than the earlier, $3.8 million contract. The two-year term locks in cash receipts over a period of time. Further larger contracts are anticipated following completion of this phase.”
“In the current uncertain geopolitical environment, there is a significant focus by the Five Eyes Governments to procure from defence industrial capability champions within their network of countries. Having deep engineering and research capability, TRL9 products and a track record of working with Defence, places DroneShield in a favourable position for ongoing work.”
Via DRO: Operator with the tablet console of DroneShield DroneSentry-X vehicle counterdrone system