At a press briefing this Friday morning in Copenhagen, “Gripen DK”, the version of the successful Swedish fighter offered to the Royal Danish Air Force (“Flyvevåbnet”), was presented in detail. The presentation was given by representatives from Gripen International, the Saab entity responsible for marketing and selling the aircraft to Denmark.
The press briefing was a response to continuous media requests for further information on the new enhanced version of the fighter, revealed only last week when it was made publicly known that Gripen International had responded “fully compliant” to a Danish request for information on a F-16 replacement. “We are naturally very glad to see that Flyvematerielkommandoen, the Royal Danish Air Force Air Materiel Command, has opted to go for a broad and fully transparent procurement process” Manne Koerfer, Gripen International Marketing Director for Denmark, said when he described the Swedish alternative. “We know that what we can offer is close to unique, as Gripen can do what is requested by the Royal Danish Air Force, much earlier and at a significantly lower cost than any contender, and this in a business ill reputed for delays and cost overruns” Manne Koerfer also stated. “Basically, we are talking common sense, as we are responding in a cost-conscious way to actual operational requirements.” The Swedish Ambassador to Denmark, HE Lars Grundberg, confirmed the extensive and explicit commitment by the Swedish Government to stand behind the Gripen DK offer. Billions of Kroner already flowing back to Danish industry From an industrial point of view, Åke Albertsson, Saab Industrial Cooperation, gave a firm promise to back up the Gripen for Denmark offer with a 100 percent offset commitment, in accordance with Danish regulations. “This I can promise”, he said ”based on the simple fact that we at Saab have the necessary experience and a well functioning offset tradition with Denmark, that over the years have generated billions of Danish Krona in return to Danish industry.” The new Gripen DK is based on the proven C- and D-versions of the Gripen fighter, already in NATO-use, but further enhanced and tailored specifically to suit the needs of the Royal Danish Air Force, thus providing the ideal solution for a F-16 replacement. Gripen DK – Gripen for Denmark offers a Partnership of Equals Gripen DK offers the Royal Danish Air Force a number of benefits, including: • A fully NATO interoperable, Net Centric Warfare (NCW) solution, featuring Nordic heritage and common sense, responding in a cost-conscious way to actual operational requirements • Significantly lower acquisition and operational cost compared with alternative platforms, with a life cycle cost approximately half of any comparable contender. • Optional early deliveries from 2013 resulting in additional operational cost savings as the need to upgrade older and costly to operate F-16s then no longer would exist • Full Swedish Government, Air Force and Industry support throughout the operational life of the aircraft • Access to all levels of technology enabling Danish industrial autonomy and increased national security, as any maintenance, overhaul and upgrades can be made domestically. • A vast range of integrated European and US weapons resulting in less dependencies • A low risk solution with a funded development program with full optional participation by Danish industry on equal terms; thus establishing a “Partnership of Equals” • An integrated logistics support solution from a proven supplier close to Denmark • Generation of sustainable economic benefits through long term industrial partnerships, offering Denmark a “Once in a lifetime” possibility to full scale partnership in system development of Gripen DK. Gripen DK – The common sense solution Gripen is the first of the new generation, multi-role combat aircraft that has entered service. Using the latest available technology it is capable of performing an extensive range of air-to-air and air-to-surface operational missions and employing the latest weapons. Gripen is designed to meet the demands of current and future threats, while at the same time meeting strict requirements for flight safety, reliability, training efficiency and low operating costs. Gripen is in service with the Swedish and Czech Republic Air Forces and has also been ordered by the South African and Hungarian Air Forces. The UK Empire Test Pilots’ School (ETPS) is operating Gripen as its advanced fast jet platform for test pilots worldwide.