Photo: Flytrex
Flytrex is making deliveries in North Carolina, North Dakota, and Iceland.

Flytrex expanding use of drones for food, e-commerce deliveries

Feb. 14, 2019
The company is proving each day there is a place for drones, especially in suburban areas with private homes where services such as Uber or Postmates generally do not operate.

Yariv Bash, the co-founder and CEO of Flytrex, said using drones for deliveries in crowded cities with multiple skyscrapers may not make sense.

However, the company is proving each day there is a place for drones, especially in suburban areas with private homes where services such as Uber or Postmates generally do not operate.

That is a scenario where “the user experience for drones would be optimal,” Bash said during a recent phone interview with Fleet Owner from the company’s headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Bash is also quick to point out his belief that drones offer a higher level of safety.

“They are so much safer than a guy driving,” he said. “You have no idea how much he slept last night . . . if he’s texting while driving. Drones are so much safer today.”

Bash’s belief is based on the more than 1,000 actual deliveries and “a lot more than that in testing,” since being founded in 2013.

That includes a pilot program allowing golfers on the King’s Walk Golf Course in North Dakota to order food and beverages while playing.

Separately, Flytrex has partnered with AHA, an e-commerce firm based in Iceland, to speed deliveries around the city of Reykjavik.

Similarly, it is expanding on a pilot program in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration and Causey Aviation to deliver supplies and food to homes in North Carolina.

Deliveries can be completed far faster by drones than vehicles, said Bash, adding that the system is “idiot proof” and “completely automatic.”

He noted the drones won’t land or lower a package by wire if it spots people throwing rocks or appear to have bad motives.

Likewise, a human employee is able to monitor the delivery, and recall the drone if there is bad weather or any other unexpected issue arises.

Flytrex earlier this year announced it has raised $7.5 million in funding, bringing the company’s total to $11 million. The company said most of the new funds will go toward furthering its on-demand delivery network in North Carolina.

About the Author

Neil Abt

Neil Abt, editorial director at Fleet Owner, is a veteran journalist with over 20 years of reporting experience, including 15 years spent covering the trucking industry. A graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., he began his career covering sports for The Washington Post newspaper, followed by a position in the newsroom of America Online (AOL) and then both reporting and leadership roles at Transport Topics. Abt is based out of Portland, Oregon.

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