New name, expanded portfolio for Etion Create


Etion Create, formerly Parsec, is expanding its product range as well as its international footprint, with the Middle Eastern and Indian markets in its crosshairs. The rebranding of Parsec was part of the repositioning and renaming of its holding company from Ansys Limited to Etion Limited.

Ian Esterhuizen, business development manager at Etion, said that although Etion Create is a new name for the company, its core business is still in product development, systems integration and electronic manufacturing services, which means that it retains its market position, products and services while offering new focus areas to the market.

Etion Create, through its legacy with Parsec and Ansys, is well entrenched in the South African market, having supplied various defence companies with electronic products and solutions, for example all Denel divisions, Armscor, Hensoldt, Saab and GEW. International clients include Thales, Tawazun, BAE Systems and Curtiss Wright.

Tobie van Loggerenberg, business development director at Etion, said one of the company’s notable projects over the last decade has been the supply of components for Hensoldt Optronics’ helmet tracking system fitted to Saab Gripen and Eurofighter Typhoon jets. Etion has manufactured components for 1 500 systems and is looking at the next iteration of the helmet tracker.

On the product development side, Esterhuizen said Etion can offer board level products, mission computers and weapons systems controllers for a range of ground based, airborne and maritime platforms. At a subsystems level the company can offer complete subsystem integration, such as the rocket launch subsystem for the Rooivalk attack helicopter. In addition to the Rooivalk, Etion Create has also done work for Denel on the Ground Based Air Defence System (GBADS) for the South African Army, supplying the fire unit for the Starstreak missile system as used on GBADS.

Another example of the company’s development and integration capabilities are electronic interface units that act as the interface between armament and launch platforms. Etion Create creates produces a unit that gets built into the launcher and interfaces between weapon and aircraft. This was supplied for the Mokopa missile on Lynx helicopters for a North African client.

“We also have an in-house production facility where we produce SRUs (PC boards) as well as complete products. We do assembly of PC boards for our clients and also create our own product ranges,” Esterhuizen said. “Clients can come to us with an idea or with an existing product which we can manufacture for them for commercial, industrial and military applications. ”

Another side of Etion Create’s business is network/cyber security. For example, it offers the HSNE9008 network encryption device, which plugs into a laptop and encrypts everything that gets transmitted on it. The company has other similar products, such as a USB encryption token that provides point to point encryption. Another cyber security offering is Solid Chat, an encrypted communications application similar to Whatsapp that runs on the client’s own server, giving the customer full control and auditability.

Van Loggerenberg says that on the manufacturing side, Etion Create is doing a lot of work for international aerospace companies, with direct manufacturing for customers in the Middle East and Europe.

Although Etion Create works mostly in the defence space, it leverages off the other divisions in the group and there is a lot of cross pollination within the group. “This gives us a much stronger base to develop new technologies,” Esterhuizen said.

Apart from Etion Create, there are several other businesses in the Etion stable. These include:

Etion Digitise (previously Ansys Rail), which provides digital safety and environmental management systems ranging from sensors, asset management, telematics and IoT and maintenance.

Etion Connect (previously Tedaka Network Solutions), which offers connectivity and communications products, solutions and services.

Etion Secure (incorporating LAWTrust), which provides identity, digital signatures, authentication and encryption, and biometrics solutions to secure countries, citizens and transactions.

Etion Create will be present at the Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) 2018 exhibition this week, and will also be at IDEX in Abu Dhabi next year and most likely DSEI as well.