Shield AI, which was originally a startup specialized in military drones in the US, is becoming one of the leaders in that industry, reported this Tuesday Bloomberg.
The company was founded in 2015 by Brandon Tseng, a former member of the U.S. Navy Land, Sea and Air Teams (Navy SEALS), who served in Afghanistan. In his attempt to solve a problem specific to what he and his colleagues had seen on battlefields, such as the need to enter buildings into which armed combatants could shelter, Tseng developed a technology of drone fleets small and autonomous that enter the indicated place to establish the location of the enemy’s troops.
The US military has used Shield technology in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. In 2020, your company secured Pentagon contracts for a total value of $ 17 million.
Shield appears to be in its most successful stage yet. This August 24, he reported having collected $ 210 million from investors, including Disruptive Technology Advisers bank, which valued the company more than $ 1.25 billion. As the business expanded, Shield established a department for government relations and hired its first lobbyist in the US.
Amid the cessation of NATO activities in Afghanistan, the company is preparing to focus more on developing smart technologies for future conflicts. In pursuit of that goal, Shield acquired two more companies this summer: Martin UAV and Heron Systems. The first of them manufactures drones of up to 56 kilos, which are launched from the back of a truck and can stay in the air for 11 hours.
In turn, Heron Systems creates specific ‘software’ to control combat aircraft from a distance. Shield’s plan is to combine its technology with that of its recent acquisitions to create a system set, capable of controlling multiple autonomous or semi-autonomous vehicles and working in difficult tactical situations.