Dronamics and DHL to partner on middle-mile drone operations

By Damian Brett

Black Swan Drone. Source: Dronamics

Dronamics and DHL are set to partner on middle-mile delivery using the drone firm’s aircraft as part of a pilot project.

The company said that it was discussing with DHL mutual exclusivity for middle-mile drone deliveries — from warehouse to retail outlet/fulfillment centre — in selected industries and markets.

The partnership aims to combine Dronamics middle-mile cargo drones with DHL’s first and last-mile services.

The drone firm will provide equipment and expertise to operate the unmanned drone flights, employing staff in handling and technical roles.

The first commercial flights of the same-day drone cargo services are expected to begin in 2022.

Dronamics added that its goal to become carbon-negative by 2027 and plans to operate using sustainable biofuels in the future will play a part in helping DHL achieve its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

Matthias Heutger, senior vice president, global head of innovation and commercial development at DHL, said: “We are constantly exploring new technologies to bring value to our customers, and we believe that cargo drones will be an element in the next generation of transportation in logistics.

“Dronamics is a pioneer and leader in the field of cargo drones and our collaboration will help to open up opportunities for urgent, sensitive and time-critical deliveries. We are excited to pilot the use of the Black Swan in customer operations in the near future.”

Svilen Rangelov, Dronamics co-founder and chief executive, said: “We are incredibly excited that [we have] been selected by DHL, the world’s largest logistics provider, as its first middle-mile drone partner, with a partnership that provides mutual exclusivity in selected industries and markets.

“This partnership has the potential to generate €1.9bn to Dronamics revenues annually, with plans underway to build and operate over 4,000 cargo drones to support the partnership in the coming years.”

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Damian Brett

Damian Brett
I have been writing about the freight and logistics industry since 2007 when I joined International Freighting Weekly to cover the shipping sector. After a stint in PR, I have gone on to work for Containerisation International and Lloyds List - where I was editor of container shipping - before joining Air Cargo News in 2015. Contact me on [email protected]