We spoke to José Manuel Fernández-Bosch, CEO of Expal Systems, about the company’s strategy for commercial expansion and the development of systems such as the Tizona Tower for the Army’s 8×8 with Navantia and Elbit Systems or the ammunition from The Extended Scope was developed in collaboration with the Ministry of Defense.
Before that, he managed various transformation processes in the companies in which he worked. What are your goals or lines of action for Expal Systems?
In my professional life I have been fortunate enough to work in different industries and I have seen that the management and transformation capacities of companies are common even though they are different industries. In any company, the commercial aspect is crucial, it is not a monolithic issue as the central role of the customer requires commercial development. At EXPAL we want to grow with more products, reach more countries and more customers, without forgetting our armed forces and our customers here, the army and the navy. This is achieved with a highly skilled, dynamic team that uses our industrial and technological capabilities and drives the improvement of efficiency and our technological development.
Arguably a newcomer to the defense sector. How would you define your vision of leadership in the company?
Leadership seems to be important to me, starting with teamwork, starting with a complete team, including the manager. Expal Systems is a powerful team that knows your product, your industry, your technology and your customers. We work very well as a team and that is fundamental in life, trust in people. This could be referred to as the leadership’s internal vision, while the external vision relates to customers and the industry. With this in mind, our customers need to know how we take care of them and their needs, that we have quality, that we have the best products, including differential ones. When we talk about the industry, we want to play a key role in the defense industry, also internationally, but above all vis-à-vis the Ministry of Defense and our armed forces.
His arrival at Expal Systems coincided with the COVID-19 pandemic. How is the company dealing with this situation? How can this sector contribute to the recovery of the economy?
Internally, we follow a strict safety policy to ensure that COVID-19 does not affect us in our daily lives, especially when we have factories in many places and have to serve many customers and do not want to stop production. The central offices also monitor the situation with increased security measures in compliance with the recommendations. with reinforced security measures.
In terms of the capacity of the sector in the face of recovery, we have to remember that we are an industrial company, which is an advantage over, for example, services, which suffer from problems resulting from mobility restrictions. We have factories, we manufacture products, and we can create wealth to create jobs in the various factories that we have in our country. We need to have the institutional support to help us find clients and opportunities. In addition, the defense sector will be an important sector in the years to come due to its industrial nature and export weight.
What plans are there for the ammunition division? What distinguishes the company’s products in this area?
There are several areas of activity. One of them is extended range ammunition, in which we worked with the Department of Defense to develop the 155mm extended range projectile. ER02A1, a national product that we will continue to develop. One of the aspects that we will develop together with another company is the guidance of this projectile, since it is more important to ensure the precision with the help of guidance fuses due to its long range. With this in mind, we are working on mortar ammunition by integrating guide sets into our ammunition. We’re also working on propellants and rocket engines, which is one of our skills. It is a value-added strategy, as the integration of control systems increases the accuracy of the ammunition and enables it to be used more efficiently, while the expanded range allows you to stand out from other products. This occurs both in land artillery ammunition and in the navy and in the air. The same applies to systems such as the Eimos mortar, of which we have developed a new version for the Marine Corps.
Which alliances does Expal Systems currently maintain or study with other national or foreign companies?
We participated with Navantia and Elbit Systems on the Tizona Tower for the 8×8 of the army, we are working with other companies on the integration of control systems into our ammunition and we have projects underway with national and international companies. We have submitted a proposal to the army based on the development of a multiple launch system for artillery missiles (MLRS) together with several Spanish companies and some foreign technologies. There are European projects with longer deadlines, so we are offering to reclaim this basic capacity from a number of Spanish companies that could actively participate. We have an industrial capacity for full ammunition integration that is attractive to international companies.
What are the main Spanish Armed Forces programs for Expal? What part of the business does the national market represent for Expal?
These are some of those we mentioned, such as the Eimos mortar for the Marine Corps and the Artillery Missile Proposal for the Army, as well as the development of multi-option fuzes for the Navy and Army along with the Directorate-General of Armaments and Materials (DGAM). We want to turn these important developments into great programs. (José Mª Navarro García)
Photography: José Manuel Fernández-Bosch CEO of Expal Systems (Expal Systems)
We have worked closely together in the development of technologies and products for maritime transport to be successful above and below the water (Expal Systems).
The Eimos mortar system on board, adapted to the Spanish marine infantry program (Expal Systems)
Copyright © Grupo Edefa SA Reproduction, in whole or in part, of this article is prohibited without the prior authorization of the publisher.