U.S. Drone Maker Raises $100 Million, Announces Appointments

July 14, 2020
A drone
Skydio, a U.S. drone manufacturer, has raised new funding and made executive appointments.

Skydio has raised $100 million in Series C funding, bringing the company’s total funding to $170 million, and announced key executive appointments.

The U.S. autonomous drone company plans to leverage the new funding to accelerate product development and go-to-market expansion in enterprise and public sector markets.

Manually-operated consumer drones have dominated the last decade of drone technology adoption in the enterprise. Drones have become critical tools for many enterprises, federal agencies, and public safety organizations. But a variety of factors have limited the scope of deployments, including the complexity, risk, and training costs associated with manpower-intensive manual flight.

Founded in 2014 by M.I.T. engineers with  expertise in AI, robotics, cameras, and electric vehicles, Skydio drones employ AI-powered autonomy. Skydio plans to further grow its enterprise customer base by introducing several new products and adding top executive talent.

“Enterprises have tasted the value that drones can provide, but are also feeling the pain of conventional manually flown systems," said Adam Bry, CEO and co-founder of Skydio. "Deployments of drones are constrained by training time, pilot availability, and the difficulty of performing important tasks like detailed inspection.”

“The drone market has reached a critical mass of commercial revenues and top-down buying behaviors, solidifying our thesis that now is the right time to invest,” said T.J. Rylander, general partner at Next47, a leading investor. “Skydio has what we firmly believe is the best autonomy stack in the world. While their innovation is in the software, they also developed the hardware to create an integrated product that fully capitalizes on autonomous capabilities. We’re excited to be a key partner in their growth.”

Skydio also announced several executive appointments. Mark Cranney has been appointed COO, leading all operations and go-to markets for the company. Previously, he was COO at Signalfix.

Brendan Groves is now head of regulatory and policy affairs. Groves is a former associate deputy attorney general at the Department of Justice.

Alberto Farronato has been named chief marketing officer. He previously headed up marketing at Gremlin, and has held senior positions at VMware and Mulesoft.

Source: Skydio