The idea for Sky-Futures was developed in the military, where co-founders James Harrison and Chris Blackford, both used the drone footage to extract more detailed data and measure the width of roads, thickness of walls, etc. The demonstrated value addition and richness of this new data source inspired the creation of Sky-Futures.
Founded in 2009, Sky-Futures is a leading Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) Inspection Specialist for oil and gas across the globe. They deliver annual, routine and rapid response inspection services, both onshore and offshore. The data collected in the form of high-definition video, stills and thermal imagery is fed into the company’s proprietary data platform, analyzed and ultimately delivered to the client as a technical report.
By 2015, the company grew swiftly outdoing the traditional inspection techniques and was ready to raise funds for its expansion plans. The need for investment was based on the strategy to build a technology roadmap, which would enable the company to launch new products and scale-up business activity. In 2015, MMC London Fund injected funds in Sky Futures to boost their funding pot and successfully achieved a co-investment multiple of 6x.
13 new jobs created since investment
The investment has been put to work immediately into building new products like hyper accurate laser measurement and gas detection, along with an inspection portal to fundamentally change the way oil and gas engineers interact with inspection data.
Manpower resources have also been scaled-up by hiring an experienced global sales team, a strong team of software engineers, a non-executive director and a non-executive chairman. 13 new jobs have been created since the investment, of which 7 are in the regional offices.
The business is headquartered in London with offices in Houston, Kuala Lumpur, Abu Dhabi and Aberdeen in Scotland. With such a niche offering, the company flaunts its global reach with 35 clients across 10 countries. The company now has a global presence and is on track to hit their sales and product launch targets for 2015. The investment has enabled Sky-Futures to pursue an aggressive growth plan to continue to be a leader in O&G drone inspections.