Industry Intel

On the Horizon

Amazon will begin testing a drone delivery system in Cambridge, England. The online retailer’s decision to move Prime Air to the U.K. is facilitated in part by its acquisition two years ago of tech startup Evi Technologies. (TechCrunch)

Meanwhile, in Nairobi, an e-commerce company plans on using drones to deliver purchases. (AllAfrica)

Hunton & Williams, a large international law firm based in Richmond, Virginia, opened a new unit that will tackle the legal issues surrounding commercial drones regulations. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Krossblade Aerospace believes that its vertical take-off and landing Transformer UAV will be perfect for drone delivery systems. (

The Spanish Navy began training with the Boeing Insitu Scan Eagle UAV, a tactical reconnaissance and surveillance drone. Spain initially ordered two aircraft and launch and recovery system for the trial period. (IHS Jane’s 360)

For a backgrounder on the Scan Eagle, click here.


Northrop Grumman secured a $306 million contract with the U.S. Department of Defense for continuing support services for the Air Force’s RQ-4 Global Hawk surveillance aircraft. (Zacks)

The Bayraktar, a new Turkish tactical drone, could be delivered to the Turkish military by the end of the year. (Daily Sabah)

Lockheed Martin won a $40.3 million contract with the U.S. Air Force for follow-on production of the Paveway II Plus laser-guided bombs, a munition that is used on the MQ-9 Reaper drone. (

The U.S. Air Force awarded a $174.5 million contract to Raytheon to provide support for high-altitude intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions and the Distributed Common Ground System. (Nasdaq)

The U.S. Army placed a $4 million order for a new sensor system for its Puma reconnaissance drones. The Perceptor gimbaled imaging sensor is developed by Altavian Inc. and Lockheed Martin. (UPI)

The Swedish Defense Material Administration placed an order for 10 Falcon undersea remotely operated vehicles from Saab Seaeyes for the Swedish Navy. (Marine Technology News)

BAE Systems and Dassault Aviation won a $190 million research contract from the British and French governments to develop an unmanned fighter jet. (The Telegraph)

China North Industries Corp. (NORINCO), a company known for building tanks and infantry vehicles, exhibited its first drone—an unmanned helicopter—at the Zhuhai Air Show. (C4ISR)

Insitu, a subsidiary of Boeing, revealed a variant of the popular ScanEagle drone, a small reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft. (Flight Global)

Eaze, a San Francisco-based startup, announced that it raised $1.5 million to test drones for delivering medical marijuana. (SF Gate)

Precision Hawk, a manufacturer of lightweight drones, announced that Intel Capital is joining a $10 million funding round. Precision Hawk builds drones for monitoring disasters and agriculture. (CNBC)

Analysis and Commentary

At TechCrunch, Christine Magee reports that venture investors are looking to get ahead of the curve on drones, putting in an all-time high of $65 million last quarter.

At the Wall Street Journal, Frank Wang, the CEO of Chinese drone manufacturer DJI, which makes the popular Phantom drone, says that his role model was Steve Jobs.

In report at the Associated Press, Michelle Locke takes a look at how drones will affect the agricultural industry.

At Business Insider, Jillian D’Onfro profiles Matternet, the startup that uses drones to deliver supplies to difficult-to-reach areas.

At the Arizona Daily Star, Tony Davis examines how drones are giving U.S. agencies a better grasp on the health and status of American wildlife and land.

Off the Shelf

DJI, has unveiled a new drone, the Inspire I, which the company claims is optimized for aerial photography. (Tech Crunch)

3D Robotics released the X8+, which features a larger payload capacity and includes a first-person view kit. (

Skycatch, a San Francisco-based drone startup, is offering a new service that makes it easier for companies to rent drones for a short-term project. (Wired)

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