In a recent report by Drone Industry Insights (DRONEII), a drone market research and analytics company, Malaysia-based Aerodyne came out first in a list of the top 40 remote-sensing companies across the world.
This is the first time that Aerodyne has topped the list, previously hovering at second behind Japan-based Terra Drone in 2020. In 2019, it was third.
DRONEII determines these rankings by looking at the company size and development, market shares, and public attention as key parameters.
Over the years, Aerodyne has been steadily growing its presence across the globe and today operates in 35 countries.
AI changed the game
Aerodyne first started out as a drone division of a media company that CEO and founder Kamarul A Muhamed founded in 2006.
Come 2014, however, he turned the division into an entirely separate entity that we know of as today’s Aerodyne, focused on drone-based enterprise solutions. It had the sole objective of transforming visuals into data.
But soon, even that wasn’t enough. Kamarul wanted to up the ante, and so they added AI into the mix. This enabled them to expand the solutions across more industries, be they construction, agriculture, oil & gas, etc.
In the span of just one year, their AI and software development team grew tenfold to support the company’s ambitions.
Today, it’s known as a DT3 enterprise solutions provider. To break it down, DT3 stands for drone technology, data technology, and digital transformation.
Rapid global growth
Over the past 7 or so years, Aerodyne has seen massive and rapid growth. This is thanks to a flexible strategy comprising mergers and acquisitions (M&A), direct market entry, and identifying local players in those markets to create joint ventures.
In December 2019, Aerodyne formed a new business entity, Aerodyne Measure Inc, to serve enterprise clients in North America after acquiring a 60% stake in Measure UAS Inc.
The following year then saw the Malaysian startup acquiring Falcon Eye Drones in the United Arab Emirates, which ranked fifth on the global remote-sensing drone service providers of 2020.
More recently in 2021, Aerodyne expanded to Thailand after the launch of a joint venture company AeroSky (Thailand) Company Limited with AI and Robotics Ventures Company Limited (ARV) and Digital Creation Co Ltd (DC).
These are just some examples of the startup in action, and it’s clear that Aerodyne has no plans of slowing down.
Recognitions of the company’s trailblaze also include a recent EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2020 Malaysia award being given to Kamarul, along with a win in the Technology Entrepreneur category.
Towards a drone economy future
Locally, Malaysia’s strict regulations of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have dampened breakthroughs in the dronetech industry, but we’re slowly seeing change.
We had our first Drone Testing Zone (DTZ) set up in Cyberjaya in July 2019, and as of June 2021, its impact report shared that over 216 flights with more than 432 total flight hours had taken place at the DTZ.
Earlier this year, AirAsia also began its pilot project for the drone delivery of goods from its e-commerce site, made possible by the Urban Drone Delivery Sandbox.
In a previous interview with Kamarul in 2020, he disclosed to Vulcan Post that the growth of Malaysia’s dronetech industry is the responsibility of all stakeholders, adding that he envisioned us having a drone economy in the near future.
He described a drone economy as a time in the near future where drones are a part of everyday life, for deliveries, safety, hobbies, and even virtual tourism.
“This is a vision of 3-4 years away, but before we get there, we need to have public acceptance. The technology is already there,” he said.
According to DRONEII, the global drone market size is forecasted to reach US$41.3 billion by 2026 at a 9.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). It spells a huge opportunity for Aerodyne to continue its dominance in the market, particularly in the remote-sensing sector.
Based on its track record thus far, any confidence in Kamarul and his team to continue extending their reach into all 4 corners of the world will not go misplaced.
Featured Image Credit: Aerodyne