Strength through partnerships

When summarising the most important initiatives for achieving success in the market, the Head of Aerostructures at Saab, Kjell Johnsson, believes in partnerships and establishments in low-cost environments.


Saab works with a global network of suppliers and business partners

"Previously, alone meant strength – today, strength comes through partnerships. Partnerships between suppliers at different levels and with different core operations are vital in order to be able to offer customers competitive solutions. That is why we work with a global network of suppliers and business partners," says Kjell Johnsson, Head of Aerostructures at Saab.

He describes the global Aerostructures market as a growing market that is characterised by consolidation and tough competition between new and established players. Saab is well established in the market as a Tier 1 supplier to both Airbus and Boeing.

"Saab's strength is that we have a high level of capability with regard to developing cost-and weight-optimised structures. We are also highly capable of industrialising designs for mass production, both in house and with partners."

Saab has a 75 year history as a complete aircraft manufacturer and has vast expertise within both structure and systems. Through its assembled capabilities, Saab has access to around 500 engineers within structural development.

"Our 75 year history as a complete aircraft manufacturer means that we are able to offer plug-and-play solutions with integrated systems and structures. One example of this is the large cargo door that we have developed and are now producing for the Boeing 787," says Kjell Johnsson.

Saab's Aerostructures operations also comprise cost effective production with a focus on assembly as well as complex and highly automated composite production.

"Having assembly in-house gives us control over the customer interface and the entire logistics chain. We have a well established global network of suppliers and partners in low-cost environments where other production takes place," explains Kjell Johnsson.

Kjell Johnsson

Kjell Johnsson, Head of Aerostructures at Saab

Recent years have been tough for suppliers in the commercial Aerostructures market with delays in a number of major aircraft programmes.

"We have now emerged from this difficult period and are investing heavily in R&D, in new technology and on creating new partnerships. The commercial Aerostructures business is an important growth area for Saab and one that we will continue to expand."  


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