Defense AI startup Helsing Raises $223M
Defense AI technology developer Helsing has raised €209 million ($223 million) in a Series B funding round led by General Catalyst and joined by Saab. The Swedish startup will use the capital to expand its AI offerings for military applications across Europe. Helsing said it aims to “protect democracies” through advanced software capabilities.
Helsing offers defense technology clients AI-powered software to boost electronic warfare, cybersecurity, and intelligence analytics. The software-centric approach has streamlined customer acquisition, the startup claims. Recently, Helsing scored a major deal with the German Air Force to develop the AI electronic warfare upgrades for its Eurofighter jets. Helsing also won a contract to supply AI capabilities for the Future Combat Air System program supported by France, Germany, and Spain.
“We founded Helsing because we believe that AI will be essential so that democracies can continue to defend their values,” Helsing co-founder Gundbert Scherf said. “Our recent traction shows that this belief is shared by governments and industry. This funding round is further validation from a global top investor as well as leading prime and trusted partner Saab.”
Helsing raised €102.5 million ($109.5 million) in a Series A round last year led by Prima Materia, an investment firm founded by Spotify CEO Daniel Ek.
“This investment from General Catalyst and investment and strategic partnership with Saab Defence reaffirms Helsing as the primary AI platform partner out of Europe,” said Ek who is now co-chairman for Helsing. “I continue to be impressed by Helsing’s leading capabilities in building dynamic AI systems and continue to be confident in the team’s ethical, transparent, and responsible approach to securing free societies for future generations globally.”
Helsing said it will expand staff across its offices in Berlin, Paris, and London using the new fund and invest further in AI. The company said its mission places great responsibility on developing AI ethically with transparency, explainability, and human oversight over AI systems. Helsing has also donated tech and personnel to Ukraine to aid frontline operations.
“This funding round is a vote of confidence in Europe,” Helsing co-founder Torsten Reil. “General Catalyst’s commitment to global and European resilience is a perfect fit with our mission to help protect our democracies.”