Waleid Al Mesmari, Vice President of Program Management, Electronic Warfare and Intelligence cluster, EDGE Group, gives us new insights into distinct solutions and capability development services offered by BEACON RED and SIGN4L to national security organisations to support them in a complex global environment. Excerpts from an interview:
Leveraging the latest end-to-end capabilities, BEACON RED and SIGN4L are laser-focused on providing a relentless pursuit of pioneering, disruptive, and agile methods to evolve circumstances in any operational environment
Waleid Al Mesmari is Vice President of Program Management at EDGE Group, the advanced technology group for defence and beyond. In his current capacity, he provides oversight and strategic direction on the development and business functions of two companies within the Electronic Warfare and Intelligence (EW&I) cluster, which includes SIGN4L and BEACON RED.
How important is the role being played by electronic warfare and intelligence services and solutions in the modern defence and security systems? What makesEDGE’s cluster,
comprising BEACON RED and SIGN4L,a distinct player for securing the electromagnetic spectrum in the global arena?
In an increasingly digitaliseddefence landscape, the pace of change is exponential and securing the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum is essential to success. Radio and radar systems provide the communication, targeting, navigation and sensing capabilities that define modern defence equipment and operations.
The Electronic Warfare & Intelligence (EW&I) cluster of EDGE Group helps clients augment their capabilities in Anti-Access/Area Denial (A2/AD), build their tactical and strategic awareness, and develop their understanding of the evolving EM landscape.
Within the cluster, SIGN4L offers electromagnetic capabilities that can deceive, disrupt, and defeat hostile surveillance, command and control (C2), and weapon systems and sensors associated with the enemy’s integrated air/area defence network. At the same time, the solutions can protect navigation, targeting, communication, and electromagnetic intelligence-gathering capabilities in order to enhance understanding of operational forces and assets in mission environments.Through a disciplined and rigorous cycle of threat analysis, research and development, we can monitor, analyse and counter emerging risks.
On the other hand, BEACON RED provides capability development services to national security organisations to support them in a complex global environment. The specialised company assesses and develops national security experts with unique training and technological solutions, to prepare the next generation of professionals for a new age of adversity.
Could you give us an overview of the services and solutions offered including threat detection and training programmes? Who all are the major clients globally?
Our research and innovation keep us and our clients ahead of new threats and at the cutting edge of new opportunities.
SIGN4L’s engineering and development teams work in the fields of:Advanced radio frequency (RF) digital sensors; RF signal processing; RF propagation; threat sensing and warning; and secure communications in contested environments.
BEACON RED provides training solutions that inspire the next generation of national security professionals. Bringing together a diverse range of subject matter experts, the company’s innovative training solutions provide the most comprehensive curriculum and training platforms required in any national security space.
Subjects include: Special Skills Training; Professional Development Training, Technical and Cyber Training, Capabilities Assessments Courses, and Language Training Services.
At EDGE, we work with partners and customers in different industries, walking them through the potential risks and scenarios to help them understand the emerging threats in today’s environment. It’s a very fast-moving environment where we need to be thinking steps ahead of everyone else.
You are providing an array of education, assessment and training platforms to enhance the skills of intelligence professionals, besides carrying out research to keep the clients ahead of new threats. Could you elaborate on the advanced technologies and platforms used to provide world-class services?
Leveraging the latest end-to-end capabilities, both companies are laser-focused on providing a relentless pursuit of pioneering, disruptive, and agile methods to evolve circumstances in any operational environment.
One of BEACON RED’score values is to consistently be on the forward edge of ideation, methods, and the application of emerging technologies in training. As the national, regional, and global threats become more capable and sophisticated, so too will the cyber and technical skills needed to confront them.
Similarly, SIGN4L is at the frontlines in pioneering breakthrough technologies in order to gain a strategic advantage in the industry and help clients expand their options in a rapidly changing world. Our latest solutions that will be unveiled at IDEX are prime examples of our agile offerings.
What are the major challenges the next-generation national security professionals would be facing in the field?
Today’s ever-changing political, social, economic, technological, and security environment offers a persistent challenge to national security professionals everywhere. The ubiquitous nature of technology means that in an age of hybrid warfare, forward thinking national security professionals must be ready to deploy new strategies and acquire new capabilities. To be a successful national security professional, one requires a sense of urgency, a drive to meet challenges head-on, intellectual curiosity, and a desire to be part of something greater.
As my colleagues at BEACON REDassert: “The greatest challenge any national security professional will face is complacency.”
How do you look at the South Asian market for expanding the business? How strong are your international supplier and client bases?
One of the main focuses of our parent company, EDGE Group, is to develop the country’s export potential in response to international demands. With an operating model that focuses on building collaborative opportunities, we work with our partners to serve our shared interests wherever it makes business sense to do so, therefore we are open to expanding into South Asia and Africa when the right opportunity arises.
Did the Covid-19 pandemic affect the company’s business? How did you overcome the challenges?
The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled us to adapt to a new reality and alter the way we work and operate. Due to the nature of our business, we thrive on change, and seek to develop agile, bold and disruptive solutions to overcome the challenges of the future. Across the group, we have been proactive – leveraging our advanced technology capabilities to ensure that our employees have the means to perform their duties safely and efficiently, while maintaining business continuity.
Our top priority remains the health, safety and well-being of our employees. Shortly after the outbreak of the pandemic, we raised many of our procedures beyond recommended protocols, and ensured necessary precautionary measures in line with the UAE government’s directives.