Israeli tech firm Flytrex, which is using drones to deliver sushi, burgers and beer to hungry Icelanders, will start providing on-demand, unmanned food delivery services via commercial drones for some residents in Holly Springs, North Carolina.
The firm, together with drone services company Causey Aviation Unmanned, Inc., got the nod from the US Federal Aviation Administration to begin food deliveries in a geographically limited pilot project.
The approval came after Flytrex’s tech was found to meet standards set by the FAA. This allows Flytrex and Causey join the few companies that are authorized to operate in a suburban area, Flytrex said in a statement.
“We continually strive to reach new heights when it comes to advancing commercial drone use around the world,” said Yariv Bash, CEO and co-founder of Flytrex. “That is why we are thrilled to have been chosen to work so closely with the FAA to help this pilot take off. This is just the beginning as we expand the possibilities of sky-bound delivery.”
According to the agreement reached with the FAA, the Flytrex drones will operate along one delivery route, connecting a distribution center at Holly Springs Towne Center, a shopping mall owned and operated by the Kite Realty Group, with a single delivery point: Ting Park, a nearby outdoor sports and recreation hub.
The flight route crosses over Route 55, and will fly primarily over unpopulated areas, avoiding adjacent neighborhoods, the statement said.
Flytrex, founded in 2013 by Bash and Amit Regev, provides autonomous drone delivery systems that allow businesses, both small and large, to offer drone deliveries to customers. The startup has raised $10.5 million to date from investors including Benhamou Global Ventures, Btov and angel investors, according to Start-Up Nation Central, a nonprofit that tracks the industry.
Bash is also one of the founders of SpaceIL, an Israeli nonprofit that sent an unmanned, privately built spaceship to the moon earlier this year. The craft, called Beresheet, crashed on the moon surface in April, during the landing attempt.