Drone delivery partnerships expand in US, Canada

By Luke Geiver | October 23, 2019

Drone delivery announcements continue to land this month. Drone Delivery Canada Corp. said this week the Toronto-based firm has signed a commercial agreement with DSV Air & Sea Inc. Through the agreement, DDC will work with the global transport and logistics company to deploy a drone platform capable of moving packages at a DSV warehouse.

To start, DDC is creating defined flight routes, take-off and landing zones throughout DSV’s warehouse site in Milton, Ontario. DDC will remotely pilot all of the flights from its Vaughn, Ontario headquarters which is roughly 37 miles away.

"We are pleased to announce DSV Canada as another paid commercial drone logistics customer. DSV is a global leader in the logistics space and a perfect fit as a scalable customer for us," said Michael Zahra, president & CEO of DDC. "They will start using our proven Sparrow drone, patented FLYTE system, and newly launched commercial operations centre in early 2020. I am pleased to report we have a very strong funnel of global commercial opportunities and we expect to see continued sales announcements in 2019 for deployment in early 2020."

DSV will pay DDC a monthly fee for each drone route deployed. The initial term of the agreement is fifteen months with additional successive one-year terms to follow unless the Agreement is formally terminated.

In the U.S., the first drone delivery fleet, UPS Flight Forward, has signed another agreement with a commercial end-user. Through a deal with CVS Health Corp., Flight Forward will develop multiple use-cases for delivery set-ups.

“As the country’s first fully-certified drone airline, UPS Flight Forward is rapidly building a robust customer base and a network of technology partners to galvanize our leadership in drone delivery,” said Scott Price, UPS chief strategy and transformation officer. “We will create new logistics and delivery solutions no one has ever considered. Previous industry thinking had been limited to only ground transportation technology. Now we’re thinking in three dimensions.”

“We’re always looking to improve convenience for customers through faster, lower-cost and more efficient delivery models,” said Kevin Hourican, president of CVS Pharmacy. “Given our focus on innovation, we’re excited to be the first retail health care company to explore drone delivery options with UPS.”