IAI to open new office in Berlin

Germany back on track to lease five more armed Heron-TP drones from Israel in €1b. deal.

 IAI's Heron UAV on the tarmac at Berlin Air Show last week. (photo credit: ANNA AHRONHEIM)
IAI's Heron UAV on the tarmac at Berlin Air Show last week.
(photo credit: ANNA AHRONHEIM)
Israel Aerospace Industries has opened a new office in the German capital of Berlin to support its growing business in the European market, the company announced on Monday.
The office will replace the company’s market in Paris “due to Germany’s central role in Europe and its strong alliance with Israel,” read a statement released by IAI, adding that Germany is regarded as a key European market and as a partner for co-development of defense and aeronautic technologies.
“We regard Europe in general and Germany in particular as high-potential markets for military and civilian solutions,” IAI executive vice president of marketing Eli Alfassi said. “The opening of the Berlin office is part of our marketing strategy to bring our technological solutions closer to our customers and personalize them to their needs with high quality and in real time.”
According to a statement released by the company, IAI has responded to the new European reality of “terror and uncontrolled migration” by creating advanced technologies that include aerial defenses; anti-missile, mission aircraft and unmanned aerial systems; intelligence and cyber systems; drone disruption; land robotics; platform protection; as well as marine systems.
“IAI believes that collaborating with additional European companies in other projects will enable it to respond even better to current and future customer requirements,” the statement said.
In early April it was reported that Germany is set to sign a €1 billion contract with IAI to lease five armed Heron-TP unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) manufactured by IAI in cooperation with Airbus. The deal, which is over nine years, would provide the German Army with intelligence capabilities and support for its missions around the world.
In 2009, IAI delivered Heron-1 systems to the German air force that became operational six months later and have since been used extensively in collaboration with Airbus, which handles the upkeep of the drone.
The Heron-1 is a medium altitude and long-term endurance (MALE) craft with a maximum mission endurance of over 24 hours.
Equipped with satellite datalink and electro-optical infrared sensors, the Heron-1 is able to not only provide reconnaissance to ground forces in combat situations, assist in convoying and patrolling, create movement profiles and long-term monitoring, but it is also able to track down explosives from the air.
The German air force has been operating the Heron-1 in Afghanistan and Mali since 2010 where they were involved in thousands of missions and, according to a statement by IAI, forces in Afghanistan and in Mali have logged over 38,000 flight hours since 2016.
According to foreign media reports, Israel is considered a leading exporter of drones, with IAI and Elbit selling UAVs to countries including Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Mexico and Singapore.
IAI has over 30 clients from around the globe, including Germany, Australia and South Korea.