For such a small country, Estonia leaves a big footprint.
Known worldwide for its startup sector, the country is harnessing its tech expertise to take the lead in innovation for the defence and security sectors. Estonia took a key position in showing its larger and wealthier allies a clear picture of Russia’s intentions for the war in Ukraine. Relying on its advanced cybersecurity capabilities, Estonia’s own experience, and a commitment to democratic values, Estonia has set an example of how to deal with aggressor countries and their leadership.
The government of Estonia announced an increase in support for Ukraine in its fight for freedom and democracy. In financial terms, Estonia has spent over 1% of its GDP to support Ukraine. The number is simply a reflection of Estonia’s commitment to its values. While news cycles focus on needed large battlefield equipment, Estonia included a less talked about item in its aid package — communication equipment. It’s not as newsworthy, but communication equipment is a top request amongst Ukrainian soldiers for whom radios and other communication equipment are in short supply.
A steady flow of accurate and actionable information is critical to battlefield success. Without real-time communication, it doesn’t matter how much large and expensive equipment is on the field, it can be easily destroyed or captured, even by a local farmer with a tractor.
Wayren is creating easy-to-implement, secure communication systems that are scalable and in high demand for defence operations and other non-military use cases. Founded in 2020, Wayren’s founding team developed Estonia’s command and control systems.
Communication for agile military operations
With a smartphone in almost every pocket, it would seem that lack of communication on the battlefield shouldn’t be an issue. While civilians enjoy commercial communication solutions, they are unreliable in wartime situations. Resilient and secure communication is pivotal to mission and defence success.
The problem doesn’t lie in the lack of communication equipment but in the wide variety of incompatible data-capable systems and their secure usage. Wayren is a communication platform that brings previously incompatible networks together to form a mesh network allowing units to use the equipment of their choice. The result is the flow of communication from the most basic squad radios to brigade-level networks and everything in between.
Additionally, Wayren provides optional hardware allowing user devices to connect to network equipment over Bluetooth. Designed to work with tactical networks, the solution is secure and easy to deploy and scale.
There’s a clear benefit to a digitalised battlefield — a faster, more reliable flow of information about personnel, assets, locations, and situations. Agile teams and approaches aren’t just for tech startups. Until now, specialised communication equipment has been the norm only for elite military units. Wayren’s solution unlocks those capabilities for every soldier and asset on the battlefield.
Highly-connected communication tools are considered a costly investment that is difficult to scale according to current needs. Because Wayren’s system allows the connection of readily available hardware — including mobile phones — the defence industry can innovate faster without having to solve the nuances of battlefield communication. Defence organisations can quickly scale their networks based on mission and location needs.
Defence considerations and tactical agility are built into Wayren’s system. Teams can reliably share data even at low speeds and through frequent network disruptions. The system is designed to enable applications to efficiently send data such as messages, indirect fire requests, orders, and tracking data. Its capabilities are continuously tested by Estonian military units to ensure that development and features are aligned with customer needs.
Beyond the battlefield
While it may not be realistic to picture a world where there are no battlefields, there are plenty of other fields in which Wayren’s capabilities come in handy.
With the ability to function without cellular networks, the company identifies use cases in the maritime and energy sectors. Additionally, emergency response situations rely on quickly and clearly communicated information. In our private lives, many of us take connectivity for granted; however, it can be a lifeline for hikers and other outdoor sports enthusiasts. They could use Wayren-enabled communication devices on adventures in all types of locations and terrains.
The dynamic team behind Wayren is on a mission to digitalise the battlefield. The co-founders are experts in the domains of cloud services, AI, and tactical communications. With their previous experience, they have a clear view of battlefield communication needs and developed Wayren to meet all the requirements.
See Wayren’s pitch at Defence59 here:
Invest in DefenceTech
Wayren is currently looking for an investment of 200,000 euros to complete go-to-market execution in Estonia and Ukraine. The investment, supplemented with R&D grants, will provide the company with an 18-month runway.
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