Big Data

DroneDeploy raises $50 million to collect and analyze visual data with drones and robots

DroneDeploy, a platform that serves businesses with access to commercial drone operators to capture professional-grade imagery of the built environment and carry out data analysis, has raised $50 million in a series E round of funding.

The raise comes just a few months after the San Francisco-based company moved beyond airborne drones to capture visual data at ground level. With 360 Walkthrough as part of its product suite, DroneDeploy now offers companies companies in construction, mining, agriculture, and more, a more rounded view of their properties by combining data from every angle, and transform it into insights.

For example, site managers can compare and contrast footage from different dates to show what changes have happened, and figure out where a problem has stemmed from.

Above: DroneDeploy’s software can compare and contrast footage from different dates

Alongside construction giant Brasfield & Gorrie, which has used DroneDeploy to capture aerial imagery since 2015, the due tapped robotics company Boston Dynamics to develop the workflow required to capture 360-degree video construction documentation from the ground. Through attaching a 360-degree camera to the quadruped Spot robot, the companies demonstrated how they can capture data from inside buildings entirely autonomously and remotely.

DroneDeploy kitted Spot with a 360-degree camera

Above: DroneDeploy kitted Spot with a 360-degree camera

However, all of this was really just designed to showcase DroneDeploy’s new offering — it will work with most 360-degree cameras, both through manual and autonomous operations. Indeed, it will work with a camera mounted to a stick, car, helmet, or however a company prefers to traverse a property.

Underpinning the DroneDeploy platform is a host of integrations with third-party enterprise apps, spanning Autodesk, Procore, Bluebeam, OneDrive, Sharepoint, Egnyte, and dozens more. Moreover, any developer can integrate directly with the DroneDeploy platform through an API.

Prior to now, DroneDeploy had raised around $93 million, and with another $50 million in the bank via a round of funding led by Energize Ventures and AirTree, the company is well-financed to continue its expansion “beyond drones,” and double down on its expansion plans for Europe.

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