Caterpillar Invests in Drone Solutions Provider Airware

Aiming to advance work-site intelligence, Caterpillar Venture Capital Inc., an arm of construction giant Caterpillar Inc., has made a strategic investment in Airware, a provider of end-to-end solutions that turn aerial drone data into actionable business intelligence.

Airware says the investment will allow the company to accelerate programs that enable dealers to offer solutions and services within the construction, mining and quarrying industries.

Caterpillar dealers will offer customers drone services and analytics, including a core set of photogrammetry, mapping and volumetrics tools, as well as a suite of advanced analysis and reporting modules. Caterpillar dealer Bergerat Monnoyeur will be among the first dealers, says Airware.

“This investment is a continuation of Caterpillar’s commitment to help our customers be more productive and make improved business decisions,” comments George Taylor, Caterpillar’s chief marketing officer and vice president of the marketing and digital division.

In September of last year, Airware acquired drone analytics company Redbird. Today, mining and aggregates teams are using the Airware-Redbird solution to monitor day-to-day progress of their sites.

Airware says it has raised more than $90 million to date from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, First Round Capital, GE Ventures, Google Ventures, Intel Capital, John Chambers, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, and Next World Capital. The company is headquartered in San Francisco and has offices in Paris.

“Commercial drone technology is becoming a necessity for construction, mining and quarrying organizations looking to increase overall productivity while cutting costs,” says Jonathan Downey, founder and CEO of Airware. “Airware provides customers the combined power of an enterprise-focused workflow and industry-specific data analytics with the compliance and security features needed to scale drone operations.”

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