Drone manufacturers: venture capital funding granted 2012-2014

This statistic portrays the estimated amount of venture capital funding granted to drone manufacturers between 2012 and 2014. In 2012, venture capital investors paid out some some seven million U.S. dollars in funding. Airware, 3D Robotics and XAircraft were at the receiving end of such funding.


Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have been called many things, the most popular names being quadcopters, flying robots, remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) or drones. While drones have become an indispensable weapon in modern warfare, their potential for commercial or recreational purposes remains largely untapped. However, the world’s skies are already bracing themselves for swarms of drones.

It is expected that the main areas of application will include the media, precision agriculture, logistics, geographic information systems (GIS), as well as inspection and maintenance within the energy sector, with oil and gas pipelines and offshore wind farms being the most prominent examples that spring to mind.

In March 2015, there were about 1,250 registered drone businesses in France, and Swiss Post, Switzerland’s postal service, has begun testing unmanned aerial vehicles for drone delivery. That said, enterprises in many countries still need special waivers to use drones commercially. In the United States, recreational drone cruising is legal but commercial drone operators need a Section 333 exemption issued by the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA).

Parrot, DJI, 3D Robotics and several startup firms have emerged as the major vendors of nonmilitary drones, and it seems that the term drone is associated with a magic touch, an allure of a science-fiction fairytale that is just waiting to be crushed by a surge of consolidation that is determined to haunt the market within the next decade.

Estimated venture capital funding granted to drone manufacturers between 2012 and 2014

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Release date

April 2015



Survey time period

2012 to 2014

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Statistics on "Military drones"

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