Drone Major Group’s chief executive, Robert Garbett, has claimed that financial predictions about the growth of the UAV industry fail to paint the full picture.
The drone trade association founder labelled a recent PwC report as ‘wrong’ due to it focusing primarily on airborne UAVs, omitting the potential impact from water and ground vehicles.
According to AV Magazine, a trade publication for the audio and visual sector, Garbett commented on the industry’s financial growth at the Drone World Congress in Shenzhen, China on June 23.
He said: “Less than a month ago, leading accountancy firm PwC, forecast that the drone industry in the UK alone would be worth £42 billion by 2030, but they were wrong. And two years ago, top banking firm Goldman Sachs said the world’s drone industry would be worth $100 billion by 2020, they were wrong, it will be much, much more.
“The opportunities are far greater than this, since such projections are based purely on an analysis which focuses only on the air industry. We must define the entire drone industry as covering surface, underwater, air and space. So many members of the public simply do not realise the full spectrum of this amazing revolutionary industry.
“This includes autonomous vehicles, pilotless aircraft, satellites, space craft, underwater ROVs, marine surface vehicles and most excitingly of all, hybrid systems which are increasingly breaking down environmental barriers by operating seamlessly between land, sea and air or simultaneously in all three.”
The most recent drone report from PwC claims that drone technology has the potential to increase UK GDP by £42 billion (or 2%) by 2030.
The research estimates there will be more than 76,000 drones in use across UK skies by 2030. More than a third of these (36%) could be utilised by the public sector, including in areas such as defence, health and education.
Across the UK PwC estimates there will be 628,000 people working in the drone economy by 2030.
New types of jobs to develop, build, operate and regulate drones will be needed, as changes in productivity and consumer demand resulting from drone usage create jobs.
Elaine Whyte, UK drones leader at PwC, commented: “Drones have the potential to offer a powerful new perspective for businesses across a variety of industries, delivering both productivity benefits and increased value from the data they collect.
The UK has the opportunity to be at the leading edge of exploiting this emerging technology, and now is the time for investments to be made in developing the use cases and trial projects needed to kickstart our drone industry.”