NASSAU, BAHAMAS – A Bahamian drone delivery service is rolling out its last-mile delivery service in the first quarter of this year with its inter-island offering expected within 12-15 months.
Fli Drone, a Bahamian firm authorized to perform drone delivery services, was founded by two former college classmates: Abaco native Robert Sweeting (Chief Executive Officer) and Arthur Frisch (Chief Technology Officer).
The company officially launched in 2018.
According to Sweeting, the idea behind Fli Drone was for the logistics company to offer a service for persons tired of the unreliability and time associated with mailboat delivery and cost associated with chartering a plane.
Also, a major benefit of the platform is that it requires zero infrastructure. Meaning Fli can deliver virtually anywhere, point to point.
“We started the business with that in mind and as we have moved forward the applications have been endless as far as medical supplies, equipment parts, perishables and parcels,” said Sweeting.
According to Frisch, there has been significant interest in the company’s offering thus far both locally and internationally.
“We have domestic interests,” he said.
“We have a partnership with Doctor’s Hospital. We are going to start flying medicine and lab samples between their locations. We have interest from a number of leaders of industry, whether it be in equipment parts distribution, parcel perishable delivery.
He said: “Internationally we have just as much interest with people looking to invest in the business, people looking for us to visit their countries to show them how this works from as far as Asia, Oceania and the Middle East.”
“We’re mostly focused on businesses and enterprises. We are looking to streamlining the delivery of goods from businesses to their end users. We can either set up at the business location like what we are doing at Doctors Hospital or in the near future they can come to one of our locations.”
Frisch explained that the company has two services, a “last mile” service centered on New Providence and an inter-island service soon to come.
“The inter-island service uses a different style of aircraft known as a fixed wing VTOL aircraft,” said Frisch who noted that Fli Drone intends to service all of the family islands.
“We used that in the past in Abaco before the storm where we were doing medicine deliveries. We will be using more of those types of aircraft in the future for our longer range routes between Nassau and Exuma, Nassau and Abaco, Nassau and Freeport and more.”
He continued: “Essentially it’s a faster option than a mailboat and a more cost effective option than chartering an airplane.
“For the last mile operation, the weight limit is 80 pounds and the delivery time would be a maximum of 20-30 minutes. For inter-island deliveries the time would depend on where we are flying.
“For the inter-island deliveries, the aircraft that can carry up to 300 pounds,” Frisch added.
Amazing, this is true entrepreneurship. Saw a need and market, and sought a feasible, profitable, and different way to address it.