Alonso Soto and Brian Winter
Reuters
December 19, 2013

The contract for 36 Saab Gripen NG fighters is expected to be finalized in a year.
The contract for 36 Saab Gripen NG fighters is expected to be finalized in a year.

Brazil awarded a $4.5 billion contract to Saab AB on Wednesday to replace its aging fleet of fighter jets, a surprise coup for the Swedish company after news of U.S. spying on Brazilians helped derail Boeing’s chances for the deal.

The contract, negotiated over the course of three presidencies, will supply Brazil’s air force with 36 new Gripen NG fighters by 2020. Aside from the cost of the jets themselves, the agreement is expected to generate billions of additional dollars in future supply and service contracts.

Saab did not immediately comment on the purchase. In addition to Chicago-based Boeing Co, France’s Dassault Aviation SA was a contender for the contract.

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