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Spotlight on KDA in Alexandria

Our Kongsberg Defense & Areospace (KDA) office in Alexandria, Virginia was established in January 2012 and has 13 employees working with business development.

  • Text:Stuart Brewer

It is responsible for marketing and sales of KDA products, including remote weapon stations (RWS) in the highly competitive US market with the hardware being produced at KDA’s factory in Johnstown, Pennsylvania.  

Eirik Tord Jensen, who took over as president in 2018 is keen to highlight the importance of KDA’s RWS to the US and the importance of the US to KDA’s overall activities.

Another product line for KDA is missiles. In total KDA has sold about 17,000 RWS to the US Army and the US Marine Corps along with many naval strike missiles (NSM).
 
“We are not only the number one on RWS in the US market, but we actually have 100% of the market, and we have been able to protect that position for the past 8 years despite a lot of competition. We are performing very well in what is considered by many as the toughest market in the world. We’re up against some major companies. The US market is by far the biggest market that KONGSBERG is targeting, it’s probably our most important single market”, Eirik says.
 
Eirik is also proud of the fact that KDA is the only foreign company that has ever sold a main weapon system to the US government.

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Eirik Tord Jensen.

 
“I don’t think any other foreign companies have ever sold a missile to the US Navy, but we’ve done that,” he adds.
 
Success in the tough US market is says Eirik down to the “fantastic team of US citizens and experts” that he leads, the quality products and the very short turnaround time.

“KONGSBERG’s success here is also partly based on being humble and understanding that our American colleagues working for us have got far more knowledge and insights about the US that we could ever learn. We cannot come from Norway and do what they do. We would simply fail,” says Eirik.
 
That said, Eirik is also impressed by how well the KONGSBERG brand is known in the US as evidenced by recognition of the company name by Americans on his business trips.

“It really is amazing that the KONGSBERG name and logo is recognisable by so many people over here. And it’s all the more remarkable when one considers we are small compared to our US peers, and our Norwegian roots.  That makes me feel very proud of the company, and the great work the team is doing to achieve such recognition.”
 
Although RWS and NSM are the foundation of KDA’s success, Eirik says the organisation is working hard to maintain its success.
 
“We are determined to secure and expand our RWS, missiles and air defense product lines. We have the technology expertise and extremely skilled employees with long experience from military services. The future bodes well.”