Korean drone startup Drogen expects sales to hit $8.9 mn in 2018

2017.07.31 15:05:27 | 2017.07.31 15:08:51

Lee Heung-shin, chief executive of Drogen이미지 확대

Lee Heung-shin, chief executive of Drogen

South Korean drone-making startup Drogen armed with its proprietary motor technology expected its sales to more than triple to about 10 billion won ($8.9 million) next year on an increase in shipments both at home and abroad.

Established in 2015, Drogen is a startup that designs and makes drones. It is the only drone manufacturer in Korea that can develop not only drone software but also a motor, drone’s key component, using its own technology.

Drongen has invested about 8 billion won to develop its own proprietary drone technology since its inception, while most Korean and Chinese rivals have been relying on open sources for designing and assembled motors and parts already available out in the market, said Lee Heung-shin, chief executive of Drogen.

Drogen has sold more than 10,000 drones that were designed in-house during the past three years. It expects sales to exceed 3 billion won this year and 10 billion won next year on increasing demand for its drones at home and abroad.

To cope with growing demand for its drones, the company with own designing and motor technologies is building a drone factory in Vietnam with an aim to complete the construction by the end of this year, Lee said.

The factory in Vietnam, its first drone production plant, will manufacture a wide range of ranges including small toy drones and large-sized industrial pilotless airplanes, said Lee adding that the company plans to launch industrial drone rental service next year.

The company said its drone motor is lighter and consumes 10 percent less power than premium motors of Chinese competitors. Also, it is priced at $20, nearly 20 percent cheaper than others with similar performance level.

Drogen’s motor comes with product warranty period of 100,000 hours while most others offer 10,000 hours, said Lee, showing strong confidence in the firm’s motor technology. The company also plans to release an advanced, new motor model that would help drones to fly as fast as 180 kilometers per hour. Now, the world’s record flying speed for drones is 140 kilometers per hour, according to Lee.

Drogen is also seeking to go public on Korea’s secondary Kosdaq market during the first half next year under the eased listing regulation that makes exceptions in capital and income requirements for promising tech startups to grant them greater fund-raising opportunities.

By Jin Young-tae

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