DroneSeed, a Seattle-based company, managed to raise over $5 million to fund their plan to use drones to plant and look after trees. The company filed several documents with the Securities and Exchange Commission regarding this achievement, and we expect to see big things happening very soon.
The documents show that 19 investors helped fund the venture, with a quarter of a million dollars of a $5.3 million offering still waiting to be purchased. These numbers are very impressive!
DroneSeed refused to share information regarding the identities of the investors.
Grant Canary, the CEO of DroneSeed, has been cautious about publicizing this deal, because the amount of money invested in this venture may change as the months go on.
DroneSeed was funded by Canary and Ryan Mykita in Beaverton, Oregon, back in 2015. After being recognized and chosen to participate in the Techstars Seattle program in 2016, they moved the company base to Seattle, Washington.
The company uses drones equipped with sensors to create aerial 3D maps of sites of interest, including areas that have been logged; the drones help identify the best sites for replanting, and then drones deposit seeds into the area. The seeds are stored in custom-made capsules, to ensure that the seeds are protected and more likely to germinate. The seeds are then maintained as they grow into trees, and water and other necessities are also delivered by the drones to these sites.
Approved by the FAA, this replanting system will greatly help reforestation efforts. It is much less expensive and requires far less manual labour than current methods. DroneSeed regularly work for forest managers and replant trees by the acre.
Canary is very proud of the company’s services. He describes the drones as “neat,” as they are able to spray seeds uniformly on ideal test sites identified by the drones themselves. The combination of drone choice and delivery helps ensure that as many trees as possible survive.
Reforestation is a very important venture, as trees absorb carbon dioxide and provide homes and nutrients to many different organisms in forests.
DroneSeed has participated in many other ventures, such as a watershed restoration project for an Oregon utility company, though that was merely a pilot project. With funding ready to go, DroneSeed will be able to expand its operation in the new year.