On Wednesday, DJI, a leading maker of drones for consumers, and Airware, a leading maker of software to power commercial drones, each launched their own drone-focused venture capital fund.
“We definitely did not coordinate,” says Jonathan Downey, CEO of Airware and general partner of the Commercial Drone Fund. “So: Pretty significant coincidence.”
Data from CB Insights indicate that $172 million has been invested in drone-related companies in 2015 so far — as much as the previous five years combined. Lux Research analyst Maryanna Saenko credits big gains in sales of consumer drones and a regulatory framework that makes commercial drones look increasingly viable.
The above graph shows drone investment since 2010. Adding up total investments from 2010 to 2014, it’s about $172 million. That’s the same amount that has been invested so far in 2015.
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