Zipline Valuation Rises to 4.2 Billion

Zipline Valuation Rises to $4.2 Billion with New Funding Round

by DRONELIFE Staff Writer Ian M. Crosby

As reported by Forbes, drone delivery startup Zipline is currently raising $330 million in a new funding round.

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A filing in Delaware on April 10th revealed the Series F funding round, which priced Zipline at $40.20 per share. This funding values ​​the company at roughly $4.2 billion, approximately a 55% increase over its $2.7 billion valuation from two years prior. Also detailed in the filing was a Series F-1 extension of up to $20 million which could still be rolled into the round, potentially changing the exact total raised. A lead investor has yet to be identified.

“We recently closed our Series F funding round at an increased valuation, which involved several new and existing investors,” said a statement from Zipline. “We are well capitalized to continue to grow our operations, including launching our new home delivery service.

This news follows the recent announcement of Zipline’s new autonomous drone, the Platform 2. The new drone is capable of carrying eight pounds of cargo at a range of 10 miles, and is able to charge on a docking station resembling a lamppost. Zipline has also announced new partnerships with food chain Sweetgreen, Michigan Medicine and several other health systems.

The company’s growth is in large part due to its activities in Africa. Zipline began deploying its autonomous delivery drones in Rwanda in 2016 before expanding to Ghana, where it saw major success delivering blood and Covid-19 vaccines during the early months of the pandemic.

“Most people think that advanced technology is going to start in the US and then trickle its way out to these other countries,” said Zipline CEO and co-founder Keller Rinaudo when speaking to Forbes. “That’s not what we’re seeing.”

The company is currently active in Arkansas, North Carolina and Utah in the US, as well as in Cote d’Ivoire, Japan, Kenya and Nigeria. Zipline’s expansion in the US was boosted after a waiver from the FAA enabled the company to conduct drone deliveries of Covid-19 relief supplies in 2020. The following year, it began piloting commercial deliveries in partnership with Walmart. Although wide-scale operations in the US are currently reliant on FAA clearance, the promise of an approaching solution to these regulatory hurdles provides a strong incentive for investors.

Zipline has raised from firms such as Andreessen Horowitz, Slow Ventures, Katalyst Ventures and GV, the venture firm of Google parent Alphabet. Pactolus Ventures, Intercorp, Emerging Capital Partners and Reinvent Capital led its 2021 funding round. With the addition of this new funding from the Series F round, Zipline has raised over $900 million so far, according to startup tracker PitchBook.

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Ian attended Dominican University of California, where he received a BA in English in 2019. With a lifelong passion for writing and storytelling and a keen interest in technology, he is now contributing to DroneLife as a staff writer.

Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles focused on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
For drone industry consulting or writing, Email Miriam.

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