Electric truck maker Workhorse Inc. is selling its Surefly flying car project to aerospace and defense contractor Moog Inc. for $4 million and forming a joint venture with Moog to boost its truck-based drone delivery efforts.
Workhorse had been trying to sell the Surefly vertical-lift copter assets to raise money to build its lightweight NGEN electric-powered step vans. Workhorse has about 1,100 pending orders for the step vans, the largest from United Parcel Service Inc.(UPS), according to CEO Duane Hughes.
Both transactions were part of an October 7 filing by Workhorse with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The personal copter project was a passion of former Workhorse CEO Steve Burns, who left that position in February. Burns displayed the Surefly at the North American International Auto Show in January. One Workhorse investor previously said he thought Surefly could bring as much as $50 million.
Some of the Surefly technology is part of Workhorse’s truck-based drone called Horsefly, which it has demonstrated with a UPS Inc. truck and driver and delivering high-end sneakers for StockX, a market that buys and sells high-end athletic footwear.
The specifics of the Workhorse-Moog 50/50 joint venture are described in the SEC filing. On October 8, Workhorse said in a press release it is working with Unmanned Systems Operations Group, Inc. (USOG) to launch an initial pilot drone delivery program in the San Diego area.
Unmanned Systems was described in the Workhorse press release as a provider of end-to-end, unmanned mobile medical delivery logistics.
“USOG’s vision is to enable nationwide medical deliveries by UAV [unmanned aerial vehicles], and we couldn’t think of a better application for our HorseFly system,” Hughes said. “As the only U.S. patented truck drone-launched system, we believe we are in an excellent position to take share in a number of nascent delivery markets.”
Workhorse said the HorseFly, a custom-built UAV integrated with the NGEN electric delivery vehicles, is FAA-compliant. It said its cloud-based software system would enable USOG personnel to monitor multiple autonomous UAV flights.
Customers will be able to track their deliveries through an app that allows for real-time data transmission for information such as package location and vehicle status as well as onboard video, Workhorse said.
UAV DACH: Beitrag im Original auf https://www.uasvision.com/2019/10/25/workhorse-group-forms-jv-for-truck-based-drone-business/, mit freundlicher Genehmigung von UAS Vision automatisch importiert. Der Beitrag gibt nicht unbedingt die Meinung oder Position des UAV DACH e.V. wieder. Das Original ist in englischer Sprache.