Percepto raises $67m. to transform monitoring with autonomous drones

The company uses autonomous drones, robots, and artificial intelligence to provide an end-to-end visual inspection solution for critical infrastructure sites.

A drone (illustrative) (photo credit: INGIMAGE)
A drone (illustrative)
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)

Autonomous inspection and monitoring solution provider Percepto has announced a successful Series C funding round, raising a combined total of $67 million for its autonomous drone-based technology.

Koch Disruptive Technologies (KDT) led the funding round, with participation from new investors Zimmer Partners and a major US energy company.

With this latest round, Percepto's total investment now exceeds $120 million, a testament to the company's strong performance and the industry's confidence in its offerings.

Leveraging drones, robots, and AI for visual inspection

Percepto's flagship product, the Percepto Autonomous Inspection & Monitoring (AIM) solution, leverages autonomous drones, robots, and artificial intelligence to provide an end-to-end visual inspection solution for critical infrastructure sites.

The AIM solution automates the entire visual inspection workflow, from data collection to AI-powered analysis and insights.

 Illustrative image of artificial intelligence. (credit: PIXABAY)
Illustrative image of artificial intelligence. (credit: PIXABAY)

By utilizing Percepto AIM, companies like Siemens Energy can detect issues such as gas leaks, overheating, and infrastructure deterioration faster, enabling them to take preventative measures and improve productivity while minimizing environmental and safety risks.

A significant development for Percepto has come in the form of an unprecedented nationwide Beyond Line of Sight (BVLOS) waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration. This waiver allows Percepto to deploy remotely-operated automated drones for critical infrastructure sites across the United States without requiring site-specific approvals from the FAA. The waiver eliminates logistical and cost barriers associated with drone operations, such as the need for radars or ground personnel, thereby fueling the widespread adoption of autonomous drone technology.

Dor Abuhasira, co-founder and CEO of Percepto, expressed enthusiasm about the reinvestment by KDT, stating, "KDT’s reinvestment underlines their confidence in our ability to make companies more profitable by keeping infrastructure operational in the face of the unpredictable." Abuhasira also highlighted the growing demand for autonomous drone inspections and monitoring in industrial sites and the favorable market conditions facilitated by new funding, strategic investors, and regulatory changes.

The heavy industry sector faces numerous challenges, including operational efficiency, maintaining reliable critical infrastructure, meeting productivity expectations, and improving safety in complex and aging assets. Percepto aims to address these challenges by offering real-time visibility into facility infrastructure integrity and proactively identifying potential failures before they lead to incidents. In a notable example, an oil and gas customer utilizing Percepto's Air Max OGI drone detected a methane gas leak within hours, which could have gone unnoticed for months using conventional methods. This early detection saved the company millions of dollars, mitigated safety risks for workers, and prevented environmental damage.

Chase Koch, founder and CEO of Koch Disruptive Technologies, praised Percepto's contribution to industrial inspection and monitoring. "Percepto is a powerful force in boosting the accessibility of automated drones for industrial inspection and monitoring." Koch commended Percepto's innovative research and development efforts and the company's role in establishing a clear regulatory path for autonomous drone technology, positioning it as a market leader.

“We look forward to continuing our journey with Percepto as it sets the new standard for making industrial operations safe, efficient and sustainable,” he said.