Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,103 pages of information and 233,633 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.


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1646 The hammer mill "Boofors" was founded as a royal state-owned company.

1873 Reorganised as a corporation Aktiebolaget Bofors-Gullspång which became a leading Swedish steel producer

1870s Steel began to be used for gun manufacture in Sweden; Bofors initially sold cast and forged steel produced by the Siemens-Martin process to Finspång gun works, but soon started to expand into weapons manufacture.

1884 The company's first cannon workshop was opened.

1894 Alfred Nobel acquired the company and helped reshape it as a modern cannon manufacturer and chemical industry participant.

1898 Creation of powder manufacturer AB Bofors Nobelkrut as a wholly-owned subsidiary.

By 1911, AB Bofors-Gullspång had bought and closed down its Swedish competitor in cannon manufacture, Finspång.

1919 The company's name was shortened to AB Bofors.

1992 Bofors merged with Förenade Fabriksverken i Eskilstuna to form the Swedish Ordnance company in the Celsius Group.

1999 Saab acquired defence group Celsius.

2000 Saab and Celsius (including the former Bofors) merged; the aircraft, missile and avionics manufacturing was concentrated at Saab. United Defense Industries (UDI) acquired Bofors Weapons Systems (the heavy weapons division), while Saab retained the missiles and light support weapon interests as Saab Bofors Dynamics.

2005 BAE Systems acquired UDI including its Bofors subsidiary which became BAE Systems Bofors AB (barrel systems and ammunition).

BAE Systems Bofors became a part of BAE Systems’ Weapon Systems providing naval weapons, munitions and energetics as well as artillery products and services. These include air defence gun systems and platform-mounted launch systems.

See Also


Sources of Information

  • [1] History of Saab
  • [2] Wikipedia