Bruges – Citymesh continues to seek out opportunities and is now also expanding its drone department with the acquisition of the renowned Drone Division from Wielsbeke. “A logical step and one that we are happy with, especially given how much our companies complement each other,” says Hans Similon, General Manager of Citymesh Safety Drone.
Drones, high-end cameras and sensors are now indispensable in the measurement and inspection arena. They are used to inspect high-voltage cables, map out emergency situations and detect future issues, for example. However, the interpretation and reporting of these measurements is also becoming increasingly important. This is precisely where Drone Division excels.
“It goes without saying that Citymesh already has a lot of experience in collecting and passing on data, also on the basis of drones and sensors. With the acquisition of Drone Division, however, we are now also gaining specialist in-house knowledge of inspection methods as well as a customer-oriented inspection platform. This will truly make our services a case of ‘1 plus 1 equals 3’. Drone Division also has a great deal of experience of Visual Line of Sight (VLOS) drone operation, namely with a pilot on location. Our own expertise actually lies in Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) flying, for example from a distance via 5G. This brings everything together nicely and allows us to give the customer different options,” says Hans Similon.
Citymesh is investing and innovating in the world of drones, as this fits in perfectly with the ‘trinity of innovation’ strategy of its parent company Cegeka. 5G, artificial intelligence and the cloud offer many options individually, but it is the synergy of the three that creates numerous additional opportunities. Take SENSE, Citymesh’s flagship drone project. When an emergency call is received, 1 of the 70 drones will head to the situation in order to make a better assessment. Thanks to high definition & thermal images enriched with AI, the emergency services gain a lot more information about the situation and can make better and faster decisions as a result… and those minutes are crucial when a human life is at stake.
“Inspection, measurement and reporting are our three pillars. For example, we visualise high-voltage lines, make 3D scans of telecom towers and carry out automatic fault detection via AI. Citymesh operates in roughly the same sectors as we do and makes an impression with its huge progress and drive to innovate. Drone Division has been operating for three years now and we feel it’s time for the next step. And we think that Citymesh will be the perfect partner for this step, as we really do have complementary knowledge. Now it’s time to go all out and break out of our own niche. And Citymesh’s safety drone story is just so good, isn’t it?” adds Stefaan Degryse, CEO of Drone Division.
This is a complete takeover of the entire team, including the customer portfolio and assets. Drone Division will be fully integrated into the Citymesh branch run by Hans Similon, specialising in remote operations, drones and data capture.