A Breakdown of Planned Defence Expenditure 2018

Defence Secretary UK


In 2016 the UK budget for defence sat at £35.3bn, making the UK’s the fifth biggest defence budget in the world. The UK has continued to meet the NATO commitment to spend 2 per cent of GDP on defence each year. In addition, the Government is committed to increase defence spending by at least 0.5 per cent above inflation in each year of this Parliament.

What is the MOD spending money on?

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) procures everything from military fighting vehicles to education services, which means there are opportunities for almost all types of businesses in the UK.

In total, defence expenditure in 2016/17 was £35.3bn. That makes the UK spend per person on defence in 2016/17 £538 (the third highest in NATO). Of this total, defence procurement spend was over £19 billion.

Currently the DIO (Defence Infrastructure Organisation) spends £3 billion each year buying infrastructure services. A new budget for this type of expenditure will be published in the DIO 2018 Procurement Plan, which is due to be released in March.

Planned expenditure 2016-2026

A recent Government report has stated that the planned expenditure on equipment and support between 2016 and 2026 is currently sitting at £178bn.

The UK Defence in Numbers report has included a breakdown of the spend:

Submarines – £44.0bn

(all Submarines and Atomic Weapons Establishment)

Combat Air – £18.0bn

(e.g. Typhoon, Tornado, F-35)

Ships – £19.0bn

(e.g. T45s, T26s, Queen Elizabeth Carrier, Support Shipping)

Air Support – £16.6bn

(e.g. Voyager, A400M, C130)

Helicopters – £10.6bn

(e.g. Merlin, Apache, Chinook)

Land Equipment – £19.1bn

(e.g. AJAX and personal equipment)

Weapons – £13.5bn

(e.g. Air and sea launched missiles)

Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition & Reconnaissance – £4.6bn

(Air traffic management and multiple small programmes)

Where in the UK is defence spending money?

Past figures can suggest which regions receive the most money from the MOD. MOD spent £18.7bn with UK industry in 2015/16. This means that, per capita, MOD spent approximately…

Yorkshire & The Humber: £40
Northern Ireland: £50
West Midlands: £100
East of England: £140
North East: £150
North East England: £150
East Midlands: £190
London: £200
Scotland: £280
Wales: £280
North West England: £290
South East England: £570
South West England: £810


MOD regional expenditue 2015 2016

What jobs are funded by the MOD?

It is estimated that MOD expenditure with UK industry in 2015/16 directly supported 1 in every 200 jobs in the UK. The breakdown of this includes:

Technical, Financial Services & Other Business Services (including R&D, Equipment testing, Education and Healthcare)

42,800 jobs

Shipbuilding and Repair

19,250 jobs

Other Manufacturing

10,100 jobs

Aircraft and spacecraft

7,150 jobs

Weapons and Ammunition

5,950 jobs


5,900 jobs

Increase in spending with SMEs

In the latest MOD report ‘Industry for Defence and a Prosperous Britain: Refreshing Defence Industrial Policy’, current Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson confirmed that the MOD would continue to spend with SMEs.

The report stated that the goal is to place 25% of direct and indirect defence procurement spend with SMEs by 2020, compared with the 18.1% total in 2015/16.

Become an MOD supplier

Are you interested in doing business with the MOD? Join our free webinar on 20 February 2018 and learn how to win contracts in both the private and public sector. You can also register as a supplier today for free.

Register now

Getting Started with Defence Procurement: SME Guide to Defence Contracts

supplies for the MOD with DCO contracts


So, you want to get started with defence procurement. Businesses of all sizes, in all sectors, no matter what they do or where they do it, can win defence contracts.

If you are the owner of a small business and want to win defence contracts with the MOD, you will find all the information you need on the DCO website.

What Are Defence Contracts?

Before you start bidding for defence contracts you must understand how the public-sector procurement world works. For a start, ‘defence contracts’ cover far more than weapons, aircraft and the like.

Defence procurement teams buy a wide variety of products and services ranging from clothing to satellite communication systems, from construction of buildings to provision of staff. This means that there is most likely scope for your business to work with the MOD in some capacity.

These defence contracts are worth bidding for if you are a small or medium-sized business. The MOD wants to work with SMEs as they have the added advantage of being able to combine innovative thinking with an agile and flexible approach, making the procurement process more transparent, simpler and faster. In addition, the MOD has made a commitment that 25% of procurement spend will be with SMEs by 2020.

How Much Is Spent On Defence Procurement?

Did you know that the MOD spend approximately £19.6 billion with third parties on a wide range of products and services? This amounts to 40-45% of total Government spend with third parties. The UK Government remains one of only five NATO member states to meet the alliance’s goal of spending 2% of GDP on defence annually.

For your business to succeed, you must understand how public procurement works and how to equip your business for success. Signing up to DCO means that you will have access to free MOD webinars that will give you a deeper insight into defence procurement. For more details about these and other benefits of DCO, download our information pack.

UK SMEs Win Business Overseas

Just because you are part of a smaller business does not mean that you cannot think big. The UK government wants to promote overseas business to SMEs. Why? Winning business overseas helps to build and sustain economic growth within the UK, something that benefits us all.

If you want to drive your small business forward, you must seek lucrative deals. These deals are available; however, you must know where to look. Using DCO you can access MOD tenders and overseas defence-related contracts.

Start Winning MOD Contracts

Understanding defence procurement is just the first step. Finding opportunities that suit the capacities of your business is often the hard part.

When you register for DCO, you will receive daily MOD contract alerts, this means that you will never miss opportunities that fit your business profile.  Small businesses can access MOD contracts that are worth £10,000 and over!


If you are interested in winning defence contracts, you can register for free today.



Academia Enriches Defence: John Lough [video]

The Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, officially still known by its old name, the Royal United Services Institution, is a British defence and security think tank.

Here the then Defence Contracts Bulletin Magazine Editor Paul Elliott speaks to RUSI Director of Defence and Industries and Society John Lough about the vitality of defence academia.




As defence is one of the world’s largest markets, organisations of any size can and already do successfully win new business and form strong partnerships with some of the world’s leading public and private companies.

To gain a share of this spend, you need to ensure you have access to the right intelligence to understand the market, exactly what you will receive with DCO.

Register for DCO now.

Kahootz: a look at the origin of Defence Share

KahootzMOD Information Systems and Services recently introduced Defence Share to enable the secure storage and sharing of information up to ‘Official-Sensitive’ classification. Here MOD DCB features writer Paul Elliott catches up with John Glover, director of Kahootz whose solution powers Defence Share, to discuss the new platform, the role of Kahootz and the merits of G-Cloud procurement.

Introduced in October 2015 by MOD Information Systems and Services (ISS), Defence Share enables the Ministry of Defence to safely share information with industry and other government departments using a public cloud collaboration service, which can be accessed on demand over MOD private networks and the public internet.

It has been adopted by Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) to meet its immediate business requirements to work securely with suppliers across the defence industry, and is now being made available to the rest of the MOD.

How it works

Defence Share is built on Kahootz, a secure cloud collaboration platform which allows people to build, without the requirement for deep technical expertise, workspaces where they can share documents, diaries, tasks, discussions and questionnaires in databases.

The platform is now formally accredited for use across the MOD through the ISS service catalogue, and is improving business agility by enabling MOD project teams and business units to quickly request, deploy and pay for secure collaboration workspaces as and when they need them.

Kahootz director John Glover explained: “Basically what a lot of organisations need to do is collaborate, not only inside the organisation but externally with partners, suppliers and key stakeholders. They want to do that in as safe a way as possible. Quite a lot of the time stakeholders want to configure workspaces; it could be a deal room, it could be a committee room, it could be a special interest group in a particular area – there’s a whole range of potential purposes for the tool.”

How it Began

In 2012, when the G-Cloud emerged, Kahootz decided to make an early move regarding accreditation of security. The Government had the idea to pre-accredit systems on the cloud so that departments could use them at will.

Annually, Kahootz provides evidence of how it meets the 14 cloud security principles that the Government has set for accreditation. ISS utilised the G-Cloud digital marketplace to shortlist and select the Enterprise version of Kahootz, so it is unsurprising that Mr Glover is a big supporter of the G-Cloud.

He commented: “For us, G-Cloud was an opportunity because a lot of our business comes from the public sector. We created the self-service proposition so even our competitors can use the free trial and there’s total transparency on price and functionality.

“Because we got our security accreditation early, it really gave us a bit of a leg-up as the Government needed to put its assets in the cloud and know they were safe. We got our accreditation about a month after Microsoft, so there were only two or three in the collaboration space, which really helped us.”

Future of G-Cloud in Defence

The MOD requires commercial flexibility with security to buy what it needs, when it needs it. Kahootz is providing a test case for a consumption-based service model. More business units and trading organisations within the MOD estate are starting to take up Defence Share, and with serious interest too from the Primes, we could all be seeing much more of this innovative new platform throughout the supply chain.

For more defence insights like this in full subscribe to DCB Magazine.

Tips for SME Defence Suppliers: Rob Rolley [video]

rob rolleyDefence is an industry that thrives on innovation, making it a market well suited to SMEs. Here Defence Contracts Bulletin Magazine Editor Paul Elliot speaks with General Dynamics UK Techology Director, Rob Rolley, to discuss the opportunities available within the industry for smaller suppliers.


SME’s efficient business models and innovative solutions make them popular among procurement officials. It’s no surprise then that the UK MOD has set a target of spending 25% of all its procurement spend – both direct and indirect – with SMEs by 2020.

SMEs can also flourish within the defence private sector, as Rob Rolley explains:

Why General Dynamics likes to work with SMEs.

  • The dedication required to be an SME defence supplier.
  • Top tips for SMEs entering defence markets.



As defence is one of the world’s largest markets, organisations of any size can and already do successfully win new business and form strong partnerships with some of the world’s leading public and private companies.

To gain a share of this spend, you need to ensure you have access to the right intelligence to understand the market, exactly what you will receive with DCO.

Register for DCO now.


Welcome to MOD DCO Free Webinars: A new way to win more business with DCO!

tick_stxA6D9We are delighted to launch a new programme of DCO webinars designed to help you win more business with MOD DCO. We kicked off our new webinar schedule on Wednesday 30 October, and with an outstanding response from DCO free registrants eager to optimise their use of DCO our first webinar was fully booked!

DCO registrants joined our defence contracts sourcing expert Barry to explore how the MOD is helping suppliers win more business, to discover where the MOD plans to spend £160bn in the next 10 years as detailed in the Department’s Equipment Plan, and importantly to learn how to optimise DCO to search for contracts and win more business.

Webinar attendees were then given the chance to ask their questions and have them answered by our experts; some of these questions are detailed below.

Q: How does DCO differ from the Government’s Contracts Finder website?

A: MOD DCO is the only official source of MOD contract opportunities. MOD commercial staff create, submit and advertise their relevant tender and contract notices valued at £10,000 and above on the MOD DCO portal, therefore DCO is the first and only official publisher of MOD contract opportunities over £10,000.

Q: In the awarding authority option box what is the word or phrase that should be used to receive only MOD contracts?

A: MOD DCO is designed to help you optimise your business, therefore during your search you may see examples of contracts that are suitable for your business outside the MOD. However, if you only wish to view MOD contract opportunities then within the awarding authority option box enter: “MOD”, “DE&S” and “defence”.

Q: If you have a question about a contract on offer, who do you contact – the company offering the tender directly or DCO?

A: If you have any questions regarding a contract on offer then please speak to the awarding authority detailed on the contract. However, our defence contract sourcing experts are on hand if you require any assistance – email: helpdesk@contracts.mod.uk

Q: What is the difference between MOD DCO and the Defence Contracts International portal?

A: MOD DCO provides you with access to all MOD contract opportunities over £10,000. However, Defence Contracts International (DCI) provides you with all the content available on DCO PLUS access to further defence and security industry contracts including the aerospace, aviation, counter terrorism, emergency services, homeland security and humanitarian aid sectors in the UK, Europe and Globally.

If you missed out on our first DCO webinar you have another chance to join the conversation. With only a limited number of places available register today to avoid disappointment:

MOD DCO WebClinic: Create a Winning Alert Profile 3rd November 2020 - 11:00

DCI WebClinic: How to Find and Win New Defence and Civil Business 17th November 2020 - 11:00

MOD DCO WebClinic: Create a Winning Alert Profile 1st December 2020 - 11:00

DCI WebClinic: How to Find and Win New Defence and Civil Business 8th December 2020 - 11:00

Are you ready to win more business with MOD DCO?

Increase your success with MOD at DSEI!

Crowd | Defence Contracts InternationalSummary: At this year’s DSEI event, the MOD will partner with Defence Contracts Online and Defence Contracts International to give you an insight into how to increase your success in winning defence contracts.

DSEI is the world’s largest fully integrated defence and security exhibition, bringing together the entire industry to source the latest equipment and systems, develop international relationships and generate new business opportunities.

DCO, DCI and the MOD will co-host Stand S10-470 where you can meet MOD decision-makers and purchasing authorities. In addition, DSEI will give you the opportunity to see first-hand how to get the most out of your contract searches and how to uncover more opportunities for your business.

With limited-availability one-to-one sessions with our expert Business Growth team available and competitions on offer throughout the three-day event, visiting us at DSEI could turn out to be a worthwhile investment for your organisation.

Based in ExCeL, London on 10-13 September, the event provides unrivalled access to key defence and security markets across the globe.

See you there!

CP Cases: the case for defence

CP Cases 13-3-2013 RTMilitary end users can be let down if the transit and storage aspects of their kit requirements are not considered in conjunction with frontline operational needs. Here, Neal Peters from CP Cases makes the case for factoring how military equipment is stored and transported into the design process.

Transit cases, rack systems and rugged textiles are an essential but often forgotten aspect of the equipment supply chain, and leaving such considerations until the end of the delivery process can mean that the mobile and flexible aspect of apparatus is devalued by supplying large and unwieldy cases and inappropriate rack systems.

Considering how equipment is stored and transported while being protected against the elements, the transport environment and use by Service personal, who by their own admission are not always the most careful, should really be part of the complete design process, so that the most appropriate design can be implemented and supplied to suit the requirements of the equipment.

While one cannot account for every location and scenario in which a particular piece of gear could be used, incorporating transit considerations into the design process can however provide a more complete product and superior experience for the end user, leading on to further engagement with the supplier in the future.

Below is just one example of how integrating the transit and storage aspect into a frontline requirement delivered a product greater than its original requirement.

With NATO operations in Afghanistan utilising Polish troops, the Polish Army required the latest field hospital and first aid equipment to support injured troops. The supplier of first responder equipment was required to provide tough, robust but light cases that would transport equipment to the front line safely and securely. An additional requirement was for a table to support critical equipment that would help to save lives.

Working with a leading designer and manufacturer of rotomoulded cases, specialising in supplying to the defence sector, the application required the container to accommodate each piece of first aid equipment in its own dedicated area and to be transformable into a field table capable of carrying loads of 100kg on the largest cases.

Amazon Cases and Racks™ is a range of rotationally moulded cases available in standard sizes which are used globally by armed forces, military tested and certified to MIL-STD-810F. The Amazon design team created a solution which would allow a standard case to be used as a table, with the lid free-hinged to enable it to open to 180°; using protective foam inserts, the team provided discrete cut-outs for each item of first aid apparatus. Reinforced plates were attached to the outside of the lid, where the supporting legs could screw into, and detachable webbing stays were attached so the lid could be held open at 90°.

More high-density foam was shaped and fixed into the lid to create a level platform for equipment to rest on; when not in use, the legs could be stored in the body of the lid and secured with velcro straps.

The body of the case counter-balanced the weight placed on the table, ensuring that no tipping occurred when equipment was in place. Thanks to this design feature, only the minimum number of legs was needed.

The customised solution exceeded the basic requirement and was delivered ahead of schedule, and was in active use during the Polish Army’s deployment in Afghanistan.

This is just one example of how considering transit competencies and design aspects in conjunction with operational needs can deliver a superior capability.

Further Information

For more information, visit: www.cpcases.com

MoD Industry Briefing

28 June – MoD intends to hold an Industry Briefing on 26 July 2013 at Intellect EnterMinistry of Defenceprise Ltd, Russell Square House,10 – 12 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5EE.  The event will commence at 1000hrs and is expected to conclude around 1600hrs.

The aim of the event is to update Industry on the LE TacCIS Programme.  This centres upon a need to ensure demonstrable value for money whilst simultaneously bearing down upon non-essential costs.  Also, in the current economic climate, it is even more imperative that industry and the MoD work together to deliver the required capability at reduced cost whilst ensuring a fair and equitable return for industry in a more transparent environment.

The day itself will consist of MoD outlining its latest thinking on the roles and responsibilities of a Delivery Partner, and the support required of a ‘Systems House’ for the development of High Level Design Requirements.  BATCIS will outline its current views on potential acquisition approaches.  This would be followed by targeted workshops to enable an early exchange of views.

Industry representatives who can contribute to the technical, commercial and business aspects are invited to register their interest in attending by the closing date of 08 July 2013. Due to limitations on numbers at the venue, preference will be given to companies with current involvement in a relevant Communications and Information Systems environment and, not necessarily current Defence suppliers of CIS elements.  In order to maximise participation in this event, BATCIS reserve the right to admit only one representative per company. Consequently, delegates are requested to submit names on ‘1+1’ basis where, if the event is over subscribed, the second named delegate would not be invited.  Any company who has expresses an interest in the Industry Day but is unsuccessful in securing a place will be sent the outputs.  The event is open to large, medium and small enterprises.


The ‘Systems House’ Construct will develop High Level Design Requirements for the LE TacCIS programme, will be selected by competition and provide expertise in the tactical communications market.

The Customer Friend role and Legacy Support aspects of the LE TacCIS programme are subject to ongoing competition and will not be discussed at this event.

Expressions of interest should be sent by Email to: concept@intellectuk.org

Where a representative’s Company holds/has recently held a contract within Defence CIS please state the contract number and your company’s role.

Winning in the marketplace: CDE helps innovators enter the defence supply network

Cubewano at CDE MarketplaceThe Ministry of Defence’s Centre for Defence Enterprise (CDE) provides proof-of-concept research funding for novel ideas that have a potential defence or security application. CDE, which is part of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), aims to attract new science and technology providers into defence by funding short projects. Now, via the new CDE Marketplace initiative, it aims to provide further opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by highlighting successful projects to some of the world’s biggest defence companies.

The CDE Marketplace launch event took place in Westminster, London on 3 December 2012 and gave SMEs and academic researchers a unique opportunity to engage with big business and pitch their innovative ideas and technology that could be used by the Armed Forces in the future.

Eleven SMEs were joined at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre by researchers from two of the country’s leading universities – University of Bristol and University of Lancaster – who have all successfully completed CDE-funded projects.

Among the technologies on show at the event were a ‘morphing wing’ from Blue Bear Systems Research Ltd, which is based on the dynamics of a bird’s wing, designed to enable the next generation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to be faster, more agile and have greater stability and duration; and an ultra-portable multi-fuel generator to power electronics in the field from Cubewano, where the final product is expected to be capable of running on both petrol and heavy fuel (diesel) and could eliminate the need to carry charged batteries into theatre.

Blue Bear at CDE MarketplaceDr Yoge Patel, Chief Executive Officer, Blue Bear, said: “The funding and support we get from CDE has been the lifeblood of Blue Bear’s innovation.”

Craig Fletcher, Managing Director of Cubewano, commented: “CDE funding enabled Cubewano to pursue development of a new market based on its current technology; this new market is expected to be over ten times the size of our original market with a large export potential.”

Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology Philip Dunne MP opened the Marketplace launch event, saying: “CDE’s Marketplace provides a shop window for SMEs in the most practical sense, helping those which have received research and development funding from the MOD to access their full potential for commercial applications in the UK defence sector and the export market.”

Jono Byrne, Head of the Centre for Defence Enterprise, said of the event: “We have broken fresh ground in developing the Department’s engagement with SMEs and academia. Over half of CDE’s contracts go to SMEs and academia and it is vital that we are able to bring these CDE-funded innovators, their ideas and capabilities into the defence supply chain.

“We are delighted with the response and support we have had from Prime Contractors, as they too understand the benefits such a concept can bring. This is only the start for the CDE Marketplace, and like all good innovation I look forward to further improvement, for example, making use of online tools and involving investment companies as well as defence companies.”

Mike Kurth, Managing Director of Boeing Defence UK, said: “We see the CDE Marketplace as a fantastic opportunity to engage with SMEs that have relevant innovation and technology for potential work in the future.”

Steve Elwell, Business Development and Commercial Director at BAE Systems, said: “The CDE Marketplace concept provides an opportunity for a much richer engagement between industrial Primes and SMEs aimed at exploiting innovation for the benefit of UK Armed Forces and our economy as a whole. The Marketplace is an area in which BAE Systems intends to engage, seeking innovative solutions to some of the most demanding and complex challenges facing our Armed Forces today and in the future.”

Since the CDE Marketplace launch event last December, CDE has been revisiting all of the companies involved and gathering their feedback. This is helping to shape how this potential exploitation route will develop in the future. Initial feedback has been very positive, from both the defence Primes and the exhibitors. Although it is still early days since these first introductions took place, CDE has received reports of follow-up meeting requests from Primes to the exhibitors and also possible collaboration opportunities being identified between CDE Marketplace exhibitors.

CDE is committed to finding new, revolutionary ideas and working to make them a reality in the future. There are two potential routes for innovators to receive CDE funding: the Defence Open Call and a series of Themed Calls. The Defence Open Call is continually open and seeks exceptionally innovative research proposals that could potentially have a high impact on future defence capability. Themed Calls are held regularly and address particular defence and security challenges, usually identified from within current R&D programmes. These calls are bounded in terms of the timescale for proposals to be submitted and the budget available to fund successful bids. Recent Themed Call subjects have ranged from ‘non-destructive evaluation of munitions’ and ‘strengthening the security of maritime operations’ through to ‘smart micro- and nano-scale materials and structures’.

All details of upcoming Calls and events can be found on CDE’s website. CDE also offers further support to potential bidders by providing regular opportunities to book ‘one-to-one surgery’ appointments with CDE experts. These 30-minute slots provide general advice on a potential research proposal.

Since launching in May 2008, CDE has received more than 4000 proposals for funding, resulting in around 600 contracts valued at over £35 million.

Find out more at www.science.mod.uk/enterprise.