Axiata Digital Innovation Fund invests in drone tech startup Aerodyne


Axiata Digital Innovation Fund (ADIF), a digital corporate venture capital fund from Malaysia, has invested a sum running into double-digit million in Aerodyne Group that specializes in drone technology,  the Digital News Asia reported.

This makes it the largest single investment made by ADIF among its 14 portfolio companies to date.

ADIF is a RM100 million ($25.5 million) venture capital fund planned in 2014 by Axiata Group and Malaysia Venture Capital Management (MAVCAP). Axiata committed a total of RM50 million ($12.7 million) and RM20 million ($5.1 million) by MAVCAP.

“As one of the drivers of digitization in Malaysia and the region, ADIF is very pleased to support Aerodyne as it wings its way to become one of the leading drone-based enterprise solutions provider on a global scale,” said Axiata group chief corporate officer Mohamad Idham Nawawi.

Aerodyne Group’s drone technology is for strategic aerial overview during emergency gathering data through survey grade drones, mapping, tree counting and crop spraying and transmission tower inspection, power plant monitoring and others.

The firm last year received a follow-on investment of RM10 million ($2.5 million) from Johor Corporation (JCorp), which made the total inflow from JCorp touch RM50 million.

“We are convinced that drones and analytics will continue to be integrated into the work flows of multiple industries. The tipping point for this to be mainstream is already at hand,” said Kamarul Nizam, ADIF partner.

ADIF is managed by Intres Capital Partners, a subsidiary of Mavcap, in a partnership between Mavcap, Questmark Capital Management and Teak Capital Sdn Bhd.

Aerodyne has offices in Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and the U.K. The firm has conducted over 35,000 flights on a range of projects and handled inspection and manages over 100,000 infrastructure assets.

“The market is currently estimated to be over $127 billion and we are poised to win a significant portion of the pie due to the disruptive manner of our solutions,” said Aerodyne CEO and founder Kamarul A Muhamed.

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