In February 2019 German Business Geomatics reports about the expansion of Microdrones, including the latest acquisitions of Schübeler Technologies, Germany and Aircam UAV Technology, China. Click here to download the PDF of the German article. For English speakers, please see the English translation below.
Microdrones: Three Times the Expansion
Microdrones continues global expansion with the acquisition of three companies, leading to international progress and expansion.
The Siegen-based provider of drone surveying solutions has not only grown organically in recent years but is also expanding the territories they service. Microdrones acquired a Dubai-based company with geomatics service provider Navmatica, in the Middle East. The company also recently completed an exciting merger with Schübeler Technologies, known for providing advanced fan propulsion jets and lightweight composite materials fabrication. In China, Microdrones completed the acquisition of Aircam UAV Technology (“Aircam”), a 64 employee Chinese company with its main location in Foshan and a branch in Beijing.
“Microdrones continues global expansion with the acquisition of three companies, leading to international progress and growth.”
As Seen In Business Geomatics, February 2019
Focusing on the Middle East
Navmatica ME has been offering services and custom software development since 2012 with a focus on geodesy, aerial and indoor mapping. The company has already completed several hundred projects in this area, emphasized Dr. Mohamed Mostafa, Director of mdSolutions at Microdrones. He said, "Our international projects include the high-precision 3D topo-mapping of the Riyadh mobile mapping project in Saudi Arabia, high-precision geodetic positioning in Dubai, and the aerial mapping of the state of Oman." With an office and team in Dubai, UAE, the acquisition helps Microdrones establish a foothold in the promising market for commercial drones in the Middle East.
Before Mostafa took his position at Microdrones in 2017, he founded Navmatica ME himself. "The acquisition of Navmatica ME represents an important homecoming for me and my team," he says. "I'm delighted to integrate the knowledge and experience of Navmatica ME into my work at Microdrones." The drone pioneer team includes experts in the design of mapping workflows - from primary data acquisition to final map creation. "We are able to leverage years of academic theory and practical knowledge,” says Mostafa, “to assist Microdrones customers with training, workshops and seminars on the use of drones for geomatic applications."
Flight Platform Development Potential
Microdrones also recently completed an exciting merger with Schübeler Technologies. The company is a specialist in fan drive nozzles, the production of lightweight composite materials, as well as the design and development of advanced fan propulsion jets. This gives Microdrones access to a full lineup of robust turbo fans, jets, compressors, pumps, electric motors, carbon fiber and aluminum composites to further distinguish their advanced UAV systems. Company founder Daniel Schübeler is very familiar with Microdrones as he was a founding partner (together with Udo Jürss.) Later he focused on his own company, but always remained a development partner with Microdrones. "The merger is very close to my heart, but it also makes practical sense. Now we can combine the knowledge we’ve gained over the past twenty years from both companies" says Schübeler.
Vivien Heriard-Dubreuil, President of Microdrones, looks to focus on the future development of drones. "We want to offer our customers new aerospace technologies and capabilities in the form of next-generation unmanned aerial vehicles," says Heriard-Dubreuil. With reference to the previous joint development work, Schübeler adds, "The combination of our teams will lead to astonishing solutions in the years to come."
Schübeler Technologies will retain its brand and combine services in the areas of administration, organization and international sales. Other existing areas, such as aircraft model building, customer-specific research and development projects will continue to exist and expand.
Creating Local and Direct Sales in China
With the acquisition of Aircam UAV Technology, Microdrones will expand its position in the Asian region. The company has a large customer base in Southeast Asia, with a focus on surveying and mapping, utilities, and the oil and gas industry. Although Microdrones professional drones have been available in Asia (though Aircam) since 2008, they now have a direct, local presence in the market. Heriard-Dubreuil notes that Microdrones already has a great relationship with Aircam. He says, "For a decade, we have had a strong distribution relationship, with Aircam, by supporting and selling Microdrones systems to professionals across the continent." Francois Gerner, SVP Corporate Affairs at Microdrones, sees the additional production, service capacities and experienced team as a significant advantage of the acquisition, providing access to an enthusiastic customer base throughout Asia.