Ondas Buys Commercial Drone Maker American Robotics

Construction and drone technologies are becoming increasingly popular and profitable with investors.

American Robotics
After securing new industry markets, American Robotics, known for its BVLOS tech, was purchased by Ondas Holdings.
American Robotics

American Robotics, a major player in construction drone technology, has been bought by Ondas Holdings. The purchase indicates a few trends:

  • A growing market share for tech companies developing drone technology.
  • Investors and companies outside of the sector are increasingly taking notice of tech advances in construction.
  • Beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) technology, a valuable functionality in construction, is turning heads. 
  • The drone companies that achieve federal approvals first will be the winners in the commercial space.

According to a press release:

Ondas Holdings Inc., a developer of proprietary, software-based wireless broadband technology, has completed the acquisition of American Robotics, a developer of automated commercial drone systems and the first company approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to operate its drones BVLOS without a human operator on-site.

The combination of the two companies will enable Ondas Networks and American Robotics to provide users in rail, agriculture, utilities and critical infrastructure markets with improved connectivity and data collection capabilities. 

American Robotics brings together IP, a Robot-as-a-Service business model, and its historic FAA approvals to deliver an industrial drone service capable of unlocking the $100 billion commercial drone market.

Unlike other drone technology, American Robotics’ Scout System provides a level of autonomy, safety, and analytics with its industrial-grade design and advanced, AI-powered software. The Scout System is a data gathering and processing solution in industrial field area networks, which can be integrated into a mission-critical wireless network powered by Ondas’ FullMAX technology.

American Robotics’ drones are capable of conducting up to 20 automated flights per day without having a single pilot or visual observer on the ground.

In April 2021, Ondas advanced American Robotics a $2 million loan to begin scaling its customer support and sales organization, leveraging its first-of-a-kind FAA approval for automated drones. These efforts have already begun to show success.

On July 8, 2021, Stockpile Reports, a data solutions provider to the bulk materials industry serving over 300 companies in 48 countries, selected the Scout System to build out its automated drone program.

The bulk materials industry is a large industrial market, with more than 10,000 sand and gravel mines and more than 3,000 ready mix and asphalt plants in the U.S. alone.

On July 14, 2021, American Robotics announced that it received a purchase order from a Fortune 100 oil and gas company for the Scout System, enabling American Robotics to expand into its next major industrial market. The oil & gas industry represents a new major market for American Robotics, with more than 90,000 oil and gas wells in the U.S. and more than 500,000 miles of pipeline that require constant monitoring and inspection.

“We are thrilled to have the American Robotics’ team join us in supporting Ondas’ next phase of growth,” says Eric Brock, chairman and CEO of Ondas. “The acquisition is especially timely, pending legislation under consideration by Congress to significantly improve the nation’s infrastructure. American Robotics, with its best-in-class industrial drone platform and first-of-its-kind FAA approvals, is positioned to open the burgeoning market for industrial drones. We have already begun investing to help build and scale the American Robotics team and customer support and field capabilities. Ondas brings deep industrial technology expertise and growth capital to help accelerate Scout System adoption. We intend to build a powerful, market-leading industrial drone business providing highly-valued critical data solutions to our industrial customers and ecosystem partners.”

“Our focus on bringing robotics out of the lab and into real world applications is at the heart of everything we do at America Robotics,” says Reese Mozer, CEO and co-founder of American Robotics. “Together with Ondas, we will further accelerate the adoption of drones for commercial and industrial applications by connecting with Ondas’ customers and ecosystem partners in critical infrastructure markets. The entire American Robotics team is excited to continue working hard to advance the commercial drone market and bring real benefits to users in need of improved data collection.”

“In the six months since receiving its FAA approvals, American Robotics has increased business development activity in key industrial sectors by 80 percent," Brock says. "Ondas will support this continued growth through the continued advancement and development of American Robotics’ technology. Also, this acquisition will enable American Robotics to access Ondas’ industrial customers and worldwide distribution partners.”

Akerman LLP served as legal counsel for Ondas, and Hogan Lovells acted as legal counsel for American Robotics.

The Scout Drone

The American Robotics Scout System is an automated drone that will autonomously run missions; a human pilot is not necessary for operation. It collects, processes and analyzes data on its own. The hardware, including its charging station, is weatherproof. It is designed for use in industrial, commercial, agricultural and defense industries.