Military C4ISR market growth creates opportunities for cybersecurity and COTS suppliers

SAN ANTONIO, Texas. Analysts at Frost & Sullivan are forecasting global military command and control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) spending to grow steadily through 2020, due to cybersecurity solutions sales as well as increased requirements for assured GPS/navigation, unmanned sea vehicles, and missile defense systems.

High-end C4ISR solutions will also face increasing competition from sufficient lower-cost alternatives, according Frost & Sullivan’s Aerospace & Defense team. C4ISR solution providers have acknowledged the requirement for improved collaboration, and enhancements that commercial off-the-shelf () hardware and software can provide, and are now weaving them into their systems.

“Advancements such as hypersonic weapons and unmanned naval systems will require the development of new countermeasures,” says Frost & Sullivan Aerospace & Defense Industry Principal . “As nations have been at the receiving end of determined, nation-state and criminal computer hacking of networks, they are keen to invest in cybersecurity.”

While frequent technological advances are raising competition levels, they also challenge companies to separate incremental technology advances from emerging technologies that will then disrupt their industries. The number of these companies providing basic military capabilities in every region is increasing, as nations seek advanced technology and look to lower dependence on outsiders. This, in turn, is intensifying competition and shrinking margins.

“Nevertheless, C4ISR companies have many reasons to feel optimistic. High-margin, high-quality C4ISR gear continues to account for the majority of the market, as reliability, quality and sustainment services emerge as bigger purchase factors than lower costs and tech transfer negotiations,” Curran says. “Buyers have also shown a marked preference for proven designs that can be integrated with existing equipment in regional and allied nations, opening up the market to innovative security technology firms.”

Global C4ISR Market, 2016 is part of Frost & Sullivan’s Defense Growth Partnership subscription. According to the study, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, and Europe will gain market share as military forces and systems in these regions are modernized. While the surveillance & reconnaissance segment will be the largest, the electronic warfare segment will demonstrate the highest growth rate through 2020.

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