Flytrex Inc. today said it has received approval from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to expand its delivery radius from one to two nautical miles across all its operating stations in North Carolina and Texas.
“Drone delivery at scale is finally taking off, and this approval from the FAA positions us squarely at the forefront of that movement,” said Yariv Bash, co-founder and CEO of Flytrex. “This approval allows us to reach roughly 100,000 customers with our ultrafast delivery, and we look forward to continuing this exciting flightpath to one day bring three-minute delivery to the tens of millions of backyards across the U.S.”
Retailers and quick-service restaurants (QSRs) can use Flytrex's business-to-consumer autonomous deliveries to serve customers in suburban areas. The Tel Aviv, Israel-based company claimed that its commercial aviation-grade drones and cloud systems provide safe, swift, and sustainable service.
Drone deliveries expand service reach
With collaborators including restaurant and retail chains, Flytrex completes thousands of deliveries every month. It said that its latest FAA approval will enable it to expand operations.
Flytrex has been making deliveries with longtime partner Causey Aviation Unmanned. They plan to offer food, drinks, and other goods to about 100,000 eligible customers who can opt into their service. That's a significant increase from the 40,000 customers who were previously eligible within the one-mile range.
The company has three operational stations in the state of North Carolina: in Fayetteville, Raeford, and Holly Springs. Flytrex recently expanded its drone-delivery service to Granbury, Texas, near Dallas-Fort Worth.
The process for ordering for delivery via drone will remain the same at each location, said the company. Eligible customers will be able to purchase a wide variety of food orders and goods from nearby stores and local restaurants and cafés.
They can place orders using the Flytrex app, which provides updates about order status along the route until the package is lowered safely by wire into their backyards.
Regulators continue work
Flytrex said it successfully launched the world’s first fully autonomous urban drone-delivery system in in 2017 in Reykjavik, Iceland. It has been working closely with regulators to develop safety standards and help launch the industry.
The company has participated in the FAA’s Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Integration Pilot Program (IPP), which concluded in October 2020. It has also participated in the FAA’s subsequent initiative, BEYOND, and is working with the North Carolina Department of Transportation to address the remaining challenges of UAS integration.
Research and Markets predicted that the drone package-delivery market will expand from $228 million (U.S.) in 2022 to $5.5 billion by 2030 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 49%. It attributed the growth to private investments in drones, increasing e-commerce sales, and demand for contactless delivery amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and private investments in drones.
Similarly, Report Linker said the drone-delivery market could grow by $13.54 billion at a CAGR of 42.75% between 2022 and 2026.