Building Innovative Partnerships
MBDA, a commitment to Open Innovation
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 diverse 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.
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.
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.
MCM ITP – Materials and Components for Missiles, Innovation and Technology Partnership
A collaborative research programme delivering innovation for future European Complex Weapons
The Materials and Components for Missiles Innovation and Technology Partnership (MCM ITP) is a UK MoD and French DGA sponsored research programme, jointly funded by the industrial and academic research partners, that brings together the best in Anglo-French Missile research and technology (R&T).
The day-to-day management of the programme is entrusted to MBDA, which coordinates the work done on eight research domains, each of it led by a key French or British company in the sector (MBDA, Nexter Munitions, QinetiQ, Roxel, SAFRAN Microturbo, SELEX ES, Thales).
The programme offers two funding routes: the Innovation Fund and the Annual Call for Proposals. Whilst the former is suitable to conduct a quick and early assessment of leading edge ideas the latter is honed to support more credible research topics.