Startup ‘drone’ company launched after redundancy

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A senior manager from the oil and gas sector who was made redundant last year has launched an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or ‘drone’ company.

Kevin Blair, who had more than seventeen years experience in the energy sector, decided to take the leap and launch Rise Above Aerial Cinematography Ltd after sitting the relevant courses and becoming commercially qualified last September.

The firm provides aerial video, photography, survey, mapping, inspection & 3D modelling for a wide range of industries from marketing videos to construction, agriculture, building inspection and emergency services.

Kevin said “I am delighted to say that I have alredy picked up work from a property developer and getting a lot of interest in mapping and 3D modelling for planning applications and project progress tracking.”

Kevin has invested more than £7,000 in courses, equipment and software to date and uses state of the art DJI drones and uses their OSMO unit for ground/interior filming.

The potential growth of the drone industry is huge and will impact in many areas of business in the years to come. Recent research from PwC suggests that the global market for commercial applications is worth $127billion.

There are many benefits in using drones and in the mapping, survey, inspection and modelling sector and there can be significant time and cost savings along with increased safety and better data.

Data collection for large areas can be acquired by drone in a very short period and processing takes a matter of hours, converting aerial images into accurate maps and models.

Kevin added “I’d always had in the back of my mind that I would like to run my own business, but that it would need to be something that I enjoyed doing and worked financially.

“I enjoyed filming and editing my mountain biking videos and was looking into getting a “follow me” type drone to film myself and noted that drones were starting to be used across a number of industries.

“There were also barriers to entry (CAA regulation) for provision of commercial services and it was a relatively small investment, with little in the way of overheads as the business could initially be run from home. I really love what I do as it satisfies both my technical and creative sides.”

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