AeroVironment acquires VTOL drone maker Pulse Aerospace



AeroVironment says it has acquired Kansas-based Pulse Aerospace, which sells small unmanned helicopters, for $25.7 million in cash, financing the deal entirely from available cash on hand.
The deal includes milestone-based earn-out payments of $5 million, Simi Valley, California-based AeroVironment says, and adds new VTOL options to its UAS portfolio.
Pulse Aerospace sells small vertical takeoff and landing systems, along with its HeliSynth technology, which AV says "brings flight control, payload and endurance capabilities to market at attractive price points for both defense and commercial end markets."
The company recently received a multi-year contract award valued at more than $14 million from an unnamed defense customer for its Vapor system, spares and services.
“The talented Pulse Aerospace team has created a solution set that is unique and will expand our family of unmanned systems by addressing increasing demand from our customers for small VTOL solutions,” says Wahid Nawabi, AeroVironment’s president and CEO. “This transaction brings together two highly complementary companies in terms of products, markets and culture, and will better position AeroVironment to grow our share of the small UAS market. The team at Pulse Aerospace shares our focus on disruptive innovation and we welcome them to AeroVironment. Together, we will deliver even more capability to our customers in the United States and more than 45 allied countries around the world.”
Pulse is based in Lawrence, Kansas, and its facility there will become AeroVironment Innovation Center - Midwest, with a focus on small VTOL drones and mission planning systems.
“AeroVironment’s global market presence dramatically increases the reach of Pulse’s VTOL UAS technology,” says Aaron Lessig, Pulse Aerospace’s CEO. “Pulse’s offering expands AeroVironment’s mission capabilities with increased payload capacity, which broadens customer use cases. We look forward to growing AeroVironment’s share of the global unmanned systems market together.”