Building Innovative Partnerships

MBDA, a commitment to Open Innovation

MBDA photo illustrating partnering and sharing technology

MBDA values both its strong historical culture of “internal” innovation, and that which is developed “externally” by its current and future potential partners ranging from large industrial companies and research institutions to SMEs and academia), as well as our essential partners in the innovative process, our customers.

“In MBDA, we are not a ‘closed shop’ to innovation and welcome the involvement of our customers, suppliers, SMEs, laboratories, institutes and universities as our partners in innovation.”

Éric Béranger, MBDA’s Chief Executive Office

MBDA is engaged in an “open innovation” approach, both “inbound” (mobilizing knowledge, methods and technologies existing outside of the company) and “outbound” (mobilizing innovation existing inside the company).

We use divers mechanisms to build sustainable partnerships according to the variety of our partners and to enable a balanced funding of investment in innovation. We also rely on a strong partnership with our customers in order to direct, support and facilitate the innovative approaches developed within the company and with its variable partners.

WORKING WITH SMES through “E3 scheme”

MBDA has developed a global scheme for partnering with innovating SMEs. This initiative called “E3” (“E-cube”) is structured around 3 axis:

  • Explore: Screening, targeting and tracking SMEs that will bring disruptive technologies and innovations
  • Engage: Defining and implementing a strategic engagement with the key innovative SMEs to optimize maturation & exploitation of technologies
  • Endure: Maintaining a community of innovating SMEs by caring about their sustainable development and conciliating the long duration cycles of the defence business with the short term needs and constraints of SMEs

This policy aims at reinforcing MBDA’s ability to innovate with its partners in an agile and sustainable manner, while taking its responsibilities in developing the Defence Technological and Industrial Base in its domestic countries.

Ways to collaborate with MBDA

MBDA needs to anticipate the technologies of tomorrow and achieves this through innovation, a core value of the company. Engaging in an ‘open innovation’ approach is an essential part of this value. We welcome collaboration with our customers, funding bodies, shareholders, suppliers, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), research and technology organisations (RTO’s), universities, trade organisations, laboratories and institutes as our partners in innovation.

> Ways to collaborate with MBDA UK

MBDA Innovation Gateway

The Innovation Gateway, MBDA’s own Open Innovation Platform

The Innovation Gateway is one of the different channels MBDA Italy and MBDA Uk are using to deploy and implement the Explore phase of the E3 project. It is a dynamic and fast means to interact with SMEs, Start-ups, Universities and Research Centers and build together our future technology roadmap.Innovative Solvers are invited to submit spontaneous proposals and to answer specific technological challenges we publish periodically.

> MBDA Innovation Gateway

Pacte PME, a French initiative

MBDA participates in the French “Pacte PME” initiative, as one of the 50+ large companies involved.

This association aims at taking actions in order to reinforce relationships between large companies and
SMEs, taking into account the constraints on both sides.

> Learn More about Pacte PME

> MBDA and SMEs

> SME Day where 40+ SMEs participate

Technologies for future  missiles:  A common approach in Germany between industry, institutes and customer prepares a national technology basis

The German procurement agency (BAAINBw) decided to use R&T money for the preparation of technologies and processes for future missile programmes. The goal is to prepare a national technology basis that is available for the customer and the relevant industry partners. It shall allow readiness and availability of common technologies and common efficient and transparent processes. It will help the customer to realize future missile projects faster, cheaper and more efficient than without a national technology basis.

European Defence Agency (EDA) : a collaborative workplace

EDA provides a networking forum for experts from government, industry and research organizations to address current and future R&T needs and shortfalls as well as to propose and elaborate joint R&T programs and projects.

MBDA and other companies from EU nations collaborate in the frame of EDA institutions to manage common roadmaps towards a European defence force.

The Complex Weapons Innovation Technology Partnership (CW ITP)

The CW ITP is research fund open to all Anglo-French companies and Academic Institutions, managed by MBDA and sponsored by a UK Ministry of Defence and France’s Direction générale de l’armement (DGA).

With a budget of up to €13M per year, CW ITP funds proposals from Industry, SMEs and Academia on an annual cycle with the aim of developing novel, exploitable technologies for generation-after-next missile systems.

The vision of CW ITP is to collaboratively identify and develop revolutionary and innovative technology to enhance France and the UK’s complex weapons capability for the 2030’s and beyond.

CW ITP does this by:

  • Identifying the key technology trends, capability improvements and potential disruptive technologies that will define generation-after-next missiles and complex weapons systems.
  • Facilitating the maturation of technological innovations so that they are viable for future complex weapons acquisition programmes.

A key aspect of the CW ITP is the active participation of Industry, SMEs, and Academia with expertise and research interest in the specific technology scope of the enduring technical areas of complex weapons – Mission, Systems & Algorithms; Seekers; Lethality; Propulsion; and Materials, Structures and Electronics.To find out more about the CW ITP programme, how it works, and how to get involved visit