TICKERS: DVR

Flying Drones into a $32 Billion Market Opportunity

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A Canadian company is expanding quickly in providing drone services to the agriculture industry in Canada and the U.S.

Deveron UAS Ltd. (DVR:CSE), which provides drone-data collection for the agriculture industry, announced on Sept. 25 that it was selected by Bonduelle North America Long Life as its preferred drone data partner for drone data collection. Bonduelle is a vegetable processing business with 800 growers with over 100,000 acres in Canada and the United States.

David MacMillan, Deveron's president and CEO, noted that "Bonduelle is a global leader in the ready-to-use vegetable space. Their use of data to drive efficient decision making on the farm is proving transformational and we look forward to supporting their drone data needs moving forward."

"Growers require a drone data network solution for high resolution, non-satellite data that allows them to scale data collection across assets in multiple locations throughout North America. We look forward to developing this relationship further and helping Bonduelle realize their vision of drones surveying their farmland multiple times per year," MacMillan stated.

Deveron reported earlier in August that it commenced a trial drone-data collection program for one of Canada's largest agricultural producers in western and Atlantic Canada. "Deveron is providing various layers of data, including thermal, to help drive more informed decisions in crop production," the company reported.

The consulting firm PwC predicted last year that the addressable market value for drone powered solutions was over $127 billion, with agriculture making up $32.4 billion of that market.

In May, Transport Canada granted Deveron approval to operate drones across Canada, one of the first companies to receive Compliant Operator status.

Rick Mills, publisher of Ahead of the Herd newsletter, explained that Deveron's data collection operation is fairly straightforward: "Using eBee drones from senseFly, a European drone maker, sensors placed inside the drones collect crop data mainly through remote sensing technology called NDVI, which stands for normalized difference vegetation index. The data is then uploaded to a computer, and thousands of images are stitched together into what is known as a shapefile. The shapefile is plugged into the agricultural software the farmer is using, and the information is ready for analysis.

For Deveron, Mills wrote "the market is not only there, it's reoccurring. MacMillan said he sees most customers needing drone data twice a year, and at $3 to $5 an acre, the opportunity exists for a multimillion-dollar, recurring-revenue model. Add an expansion into the United States, and even beyond, and the sky really is the limit."

Mills believes that Deveron should be on investor's radar screens "because of Deveron UAS being a first-mover into a US$32 billion sector, because of massive global growth potential, and because the company is building a recurring revenue stream."

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