Some drone industry consolidation this morning as Ondas Holdings, the company behind Waltham, Massachusetts–based American Robotics announced its plans to acquire Airobotics. It’s admittedly been a few years since we covered the latter, when the Israeli firm announced a combined $28.5 million A/B round.
To date, the company has raised $130 million since its 2014 founding. American Robotics, meanwhile, was acquired by Ondas in August of last year.
The new deal should prove a good fit, as both companies play similar roles within the broader industrial drone space. While there’s bound to be a fair bit of redundancy, Ondas notes that such a merging would give the combined companies a better global foothold in a rapidly expanding category.
The companies write in a joint press release,
The combination of the two companies brings together leading engineering and aviation talent, regulatory leadership, and world-class technology platforms, providing a unique opportunity to offer a broader scope of solutions and services for customers in accelerated timelines. Further, the combined companies offer the potential to be a truly global provider of automated drone solutions to commercial markets, allowing multi-national customers and governments to focus their UAS programs with the leading solutions provider.
American Robotics’ primary play is Scout, a fully autonomous drone system that can operate on remote sites without direct human oversight. Similarly, Airobotics offers an all-in-one autonomous drone solution. The company’s Optimus drone launches out of an automated docking space that serves as a base and transmits data to the quadcopter. Applications include emergency response, mapping and surveying.
“American Robotics and Airobotics have matured different elements of the DIB ecosystem, and this business combination allows for an accelerated offering set that furthers our leadership position in a broader set of market opportunities,” American Robotics CEO Reese Mozer tells TechCrunch. “Said another way, in the near term we will learn from each other to further mature our respective systems. Longer term, the Scout System and the Optimus System will be different models existing within the same product family, with each specializing in a different set of use cases. See the attached infographic highlighting the primary differences between the two current platforms.”
The joint companies will maintain operation in the U.S. and Israel, and will have an office in Asia. Mozer expects Airobotics to maintain its existing staff. The brands, meanwhile, will remain differentiated in the short-term, with Airobotics eventually being rolled into the American Robotics banner.
Based on current stock prices, the deal is currently estimated at $18.4 million. Its deal is expected to close in Q4.
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