Rinat Akhmetov’s metallurgical enterprise Metinvest Group, an integrated group of steel and mining companies and one of Ukraine’s largest steel producers, has purchased more than 1,100 drones that will be delivered to various ground forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
This is the latest procurement of vital equipment by Metinvest Group as part of its Steel Front military initiative.
Metinvest Group’s Steel Front
The Steel Front is a Metinvest project dedicated to providing critical equipment to the AFU. From ballistic shields and body armor made from Metinvest’s own materials to ambulances and drones procured from third-party providers, billions of hryvnia have been spent by the company since the start of the all-out war in February 2022.
“Metinvest’s Steel Front is a contribution to our joint victory and the future of Ukraine. The group’s steel, which features in hundreds of thousands of armor vests, is protecting the lives of our soldiers who are defending Ukraine’s sovereignty. Metinvest’s steel has formed the backbone of tens of thousands of shelters, anti-tank hedgehogs, and fortifications, which help to stop the aggressor,” Rinat Akhmetov said in a statement published last July.
Drones for Ukraine’s Defenders
Rinat Akhmetov and Metinvest Group have procured DJI Mavic 3 drones, which will be sent to the eastern and southern parts of the front, in particular to areas that have seen the most fighting: namely Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Vugledar. Some of the drones will go to the defense forces protecting Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv.
According to Metinvest Group, in excess of 10 million hryvnia (approximately $272,104) has been spent on the procurement of drones so far. DJI Mavic 3 Fly More Combo drones are some of the most advanced compact unmanned air vehicle (UAV) devices on the market today, and they’ve proven popular with Ukrainian troops. The drones are primarily used for surveillance and fire adjustment, the latter being a force multiplier that is editable during combat. Troops use the device to increase or scale back oppositional support, thus increasing troops’ survivability during combat.
“We understand that drones are an extremely important part of the tactics of the Armed Forces both during the defense of Ukrainian territory against the aggressor’s onslaught and during counterattacks. Such UAVs as the DJI Mavic 3 are the eyes of Ukrainian soldiers; they are high-quality intelligence that saves lives,” said Oleg Matvienko, head of the military security department of Metinvest Group.
A New Record for Metinvest
Since February 2022, Metinvest Group has delivered more than 1,100 drones to various units of the AFU. Recently, 100 of these drones were provided in a single batch to defense forces, setting a new record for Metinvest.
According to the metallurgical company, the supply of drones to the AFU is one of the pillars of resistance against Russian forces. The combination of reconnaissance and intelligence gathering in conjunction with fire correction functions enables the use of the DJI Mavic 3 drones in a variety of modern military operations.
“Drones are lightweight, mobile vehicles that are difficult for the enemy to detect with their existing equipment. They are in demand among members of the military during high-intensity combat operations, so this batch will be very useful for several army units that are performing tasks in the southern and eastern directions, including Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Vugledar,” said Andrei Redozubov, captain of the AFU Ground Forces.
In addition to procuring the drones, Metinvest is handling the organization, logistics, location, and delivery. This is a significant undertaking that’s helping to prop up the critical work of the armed forces, enabling soldiers to focus on countering Russian aggressors.
$41 Million Since the Beginning of the War
Through Metinvest Group and other business interests, Rinat Akhmetov has supported the AFU with donations of more than 1.5 billion hryvnia since the outbreak of the war last year.
In addition to drones, the metallurgical company also supplies the AFU, National Guard, Defence Intelligence, and other defense forces with equipment that includes more than 150,000 sets of body armor, anti-tank hedgehogs, thermal imagers, vehicles, mobile shelters, ammunition, and other gear that’s helping Ukrainian warriors withstand and overcome Russian attacks.
As reported by GMK Center, Metinvest has already delivered 100 mobile shelters to the front lines. These are used to provide shelter in regions where fierce battles are taking place. They can be set up quickly and easily via a modular design despite being made of almost two tons of steel. They’re becoming one of the most sought-after pieces of equipment among Ukrainian soldiers.