Tech Brazil now has the Edge in defence technology By Andy Sambidge April 12, 2023 Edge Group Edge Group is showcasing a range of its defence products at LAAD Defence & Security 2023 in Brazil ahead of opening a regional office in the country Abu Dhabi tech and defence group expands global footprint Brazil set to increase defence spending to nearly $25bn this year Edge Group products include electronic warfare and cyber technologies Technology and defence giant Edge Group is opening a new regional office in Brazil’s federal capital, Brasilia. The office is part of Abu Dhabi-based Edge’s plans to take advantage of opportunities in local markets as experts expect defence spending in Brazil to increase to nearly $25 billion this year. The announcement was made at LAAD Defence & Security 2023 in Rio de Janeiro, where Edge is participating for the first time with 10 of its portfolio companies, showcasing products including air, land and naval systems, precision-guided munitions, ammunition and electronic warfare. Brazil steps up efforts to engage UAE in free trade talks UAE launches free zone for military and security sector UAE defence giant buys stake in Estonian robotics firm According to data intelligence firm Global Data, Brazil’s defence expenditure fell from $28.2 billion in 2018 to $21.8 billion in 2022. But with the Brazilian economy steadily recovering after the Covid-19 pandemic, it is anticipated that a greater allocation of funds will be set aside for the defence sector and spending is expected to increase from $24.8 billion in 2023 to $31.4 billion in 2027. Plans to undertake major modernisation programmes to increase the capabilities of the country’s armed forces will also boost defence spending in the same period. In January it was reported that Brazil’s newly inaugurated president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, held a meeting with the country’s armed forces “to discuss the strengthening of the defence industry”. Mansour AlMulla, managing director and CEO of Edge, said the announcement of the Brazil office “is a clear signal of our confidence in markets across the continent and the valuable opportunities they present". He added: “As we expand our global footprint, we are now taking a keen commercial interest in these markets with the aim of showcasing our industry-leading advanced technology and defence solutions, forging new partnerships, and assisting in the development of national defence capabilities.” With order intake of more than $5 billion secured during 2022, $1.2 billion of which was in international exports, Edge’s global footprint now covers 30 countries across five continents – North and South America, Europe, Africa and Asia. With a focus on autonomous systems, smart weapons and cyber technologies, the company has increased the number of its products to about 115, a fourfold increase since its launch in November 2019. In February Edge was awarded a AED4.7 billion contract at the International Defence Exhibition in Abu Dhabi for its subsidiary Halcon to supply Desert Sting P5 systems. Edge GroupEdge Group CEO Mansour AlMulla is taking "a keen commercial interest" in Latin American markets In the same month the company bought a majority stake in Estonia’s Milrem Robotics, a leading European developer of autonomous systems – the largest foreign investment in Estonia’s growing defence industry. In January Edge also announced a strategic investment in High Lander, the Tel Aviv-based company behind Universal UTM, a drone-agnostic unmanned traffic management solution. Edge includes more than 20 entities into four core clusters – platforms and systems, missiles and weapons, electronic warfare and cyber technologies and trading and mission support.