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Swoop Aero Joins Forces With ChristchurchNZ To Design Urban Networks For Drone Deliveries

A ground-breaking drone logistics company is joining Ōtautahi Christchurch’s long list of pioneers and innovators by using the city to pilot an integrated drone delivery network.

Swoop Aero has partnered with ChristchurchNZ’s Urban Development team to establish a network including the Aviary, Swoop Aero’s autonomous docking station for a fleet of drones. The Aviary combines landing infrastructure, charging technology, payload exchange, and a user interface in an architecturally designed structure to scale integrated drone logistics and makes access to the skies seamless for all.

Swoop Aero integrates drone logistics into the first and last mile of the supply chain to transform its strength and agility. Since 2017, the drone company has completed over 13,000 Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) flights, safely delivering over 700,000 items worldwide.

Swoop General Manager New Zealand Richard Adams with a Swoop Aero delivery drone at Leithfield Beach

In 2018, Swoop Aero became the first company globally to deliver a vaccine via a commercial drone operation in Vanuatu. The company worked with UNICEF and the Vanuatu Government, with funding from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, to increase child immunization rates across the country, deploying bi-directional drone networks to bridge the gap in access to healthcare for remote island communities.

Swoop Aero‘s service commitment is to provide the world’s leading technology platform for sustainable and scalable drone logistics. Their proven technology platform is deployed across three continents, including in the UK, Australia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mozambique and Malawi. Now the company is looking at bringing their experience to an urban environment.

“We have proven our capabilities in remote and rural areas,” said Swoop Aero’s CEO Eric Peck. “This partnership will develop and implement the concept of an urban drone logistics network in a modern, future-facing city bringing us closer to our goal to providing a service accessible by 100 million people in 2025.”

This partnership will develop and implement the concept of an urban drone logistics network in a modern, future-facing city bringing us closer to our goal to providing a service accessible by 100 million people in 2025.”

Swoop Aero’s CEO - Eric Peck

By partnering with ChristchurchNZ, Swoop Aero is leveraging the expertise of the economic development agency’s Urban Development team to design a concept for a city-wide urban air logistics network, the first of its kind in the world making access to the skies seamless for both businesses and individuals across the city.

“This partnership is a natural fit for an urban development team within an economic development agency,” said Christchurch's GM of Urban Development Cath Carter. “Urban development is traditionally about unlocking the economic potential of places, land and buildings. This partnership expands that ambition to urban skies.”

 

This partnership is a natural fit for an urban development team within an economic development agency,”

Christchurch's GM of Urban Development - Cath Carter.

Swoop Aero, a future-focused logistics company chose to have a presence in Christchurch, joining aerospace pioneers such as Dawn Aerospace, Kea Aerospace and Wisk. These companies have been attracted by the city’s relatively clear skies, access to engineering talent and a light-touch regulatory environment.

The aerospace and future transport sector holds great opportunity for the Canterbury region. It has a current global value of $360 billion and is estimated to be a $2.7 trillion industry by 2050. It is one of four “supernodes” of future-focused growth industries being actively nurtured by ChristchurchNZ to stimulate sustainable economic growth for a more prosperous Christchurch.

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