in Defence / Security / Events

DSEI exhibition to mark 20th year

Posted 17 September 2018 · Add Comment

The next edition of Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) - being held at the ExCeL London 10-13 September 2019 - will mark 20 years since the event was first established as ‘the British Army and Navy exhibition’.

Returning to ExCeL London 10-13 September 2019, DSEI now encompasses the entire defence and security audience, including Air, Land, Naval, Security and Joint, and has grown – both in size and content – to reflect the complex nature of modern warfare and security operations.

Above: DSEI launched in Chertsey, in September 1999.   
Twenty years in defence is a long time – and the industry has evolved considerably – unrecognisably in many respects - since 1999. Priorities changed significantly, and rapidly, after 11 September 2001 – which many of us learned of while in the exhibition halls of DSEI.

The intensifying threat from the “digital battlefield”, wide-ranging cuts to defence spending and expansion of technological know-how during this time have shaped and reshaped the way industry does business.

DSEI 2019 will overarchingly focus on Emerging Technologies, Cross-Sector Exploitation and International Collaboration. Visitors can also expect significant focus on Artificial Intelligence; Autonomous Systems; Robotics; and Big Data, from the industry’s leading lights. These themes will run throughout the exhibition and conference programme.

Held biennially, DSEI connects governments, national armed forces, industry thought leaders and the global defence and security supply chain on an unrivalled scale. The event is curated to consistently support both the prime contractors as well as small and medium-sized enterprises while, crucially, giving the UK exports a significant boost. On a rolling 10 year basis, the UK remains the second largest global defence exporter. In 2017, it won defence and security orders worth £9 billion and £4.8 billion respectively, up on the previous year (£5.9 billion and £4.3 billion).

Above: DSEI at ExCeL London in 2017.   

DSEI will also promote the global supply chain via dedicated new feature areas on the exhibition floor. These specialised “hubs” will showcase cross-sector suppliers within the Manufacturing, Innovation, Communications, Cyber, Space and Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul & Upgrade domains. 

Exhibiting companies featuring for the first time include the world’s leading multi-technology tier 1 aerospace supplier, GKN Aerospace, and Pela Systems which manufactures products including the PelaCopter – an unmanned system which can be flown into hazardous situations and provide real-time data to aid decision making in the field. The company also specialises in emergency communications, threat monitoring, and surveillance systems.

Many products, now globally renowned, were first introduced to the market at DSEI.

Remember the LifeSaver water (right) bottle which debuted its pioneering water-purifying drinking vessel to the world at DSEI in 2007?

The product was named DSEI’s 'Best Technological Development' and the entire stock sold out within four hours of the presentation.

Having first caught the attention of the British Army, the Lifesaver water bottle is now used globally by militaries, humanitarian teams and outdoor enthusiasts.

DSEI 2019 will also see the debut of both Latvia and Lithuania, who will for the first-time host national pavilions providing a hub of their countries’ defence and security ingenuity. Among the 30 country pavilions confirmed to date, nations such as the Czech Republic, Holland, Denmark, Slovakia, and Australia have significantly larger areas, reflecting the rise in exportable expertise from these regions, and a desire to develop international partnerships.
Grant Burgham, DSEI Event Director said: “DSEI is a milestone in the defence calendar and this is reflected by the fact that, with a year to go, almost all the exhibition space has already been accounted for.

While, in many ways, DSEI is unrecognisable from its beginnings in Chertsey, it has consistently delivered a platform for industry to engage with the defence and security community. What time has taught us is that this is founded on key partnerships and we value the partners that have been with us on this journey, while fostering new alliances and connections with other cross-sector organisations.”


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