A venture capital firm just bet £2.5 million on oil companies using drones

DJI dronesREUTERS/Charles PlatiauA ‘Phantom 2’ drone by DJI company flies during the 4th Intergalactic Meeting of Phantom’s Pilots (MIPP) in an open secure area in the Bois de Boulogne, western Paris, March 16, 2014.

London venture capital fund MMC Ventures is betting £2.5 million ($US3.8 million) on drones being the future for the oil and gas industry. 

MMC has invested the sum in five-year-old London start-up Sky-Futures, which uses drones to help monitor and inspect oil and gas facilities.

The company, which was founded by two UK army veterans and a former British Airways pilot, already works with majors including BP, BG Group, Shell, and Statoil. Sky-Futures has also just won approval to fly in US airspace, opening up a huge market of it.

MMC’s Simon Menashy said Sky-Futures’ technology “changes the game for platform operators in terms of cost, safety and depth of analysis.”

The £2.5 million funding is Sky-Futures first investment from an institution and is thought to be one of the biggest early-stage investments in a drone company in Europe. ASOS founder Nick Robertson was an early investor in the business.

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