Airbus has launched its US base and operations of a new commercial drone startup—Airbus Aerial—in Atlanta, Georgia and has appointed Jesse Kallman as president of the US base.

The new business offers imagery services fusing drones, satellite images and software to bring deeper insights to commercial customers, Airbus said in a statement.

Airbus Aerial, which is also planning a base in Europe, initially will focus on developing new imagery services.

According to Airbus, these services will leverage the best global software and aerospace technology to offer actionable data and analysis of information provided by drones, satellites, high altitude aircraft and other sources.

“Through Airbus Aerial, we are uniquely positioned and fully committed to advancing the commercial Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) industry. It is bringing together partners from across the industry—ranging from vehicle manufacturers, data analytics companies, service providers and others—to enable data-focused services at large scale,” Airbus Defense and Space CEO Dirk Hoke said. “Using an integrated combination of assets, from UAS platforms to satellite imagery, Airbus Aerial is rolling out a wide range of new imagery services. In the future, additional pillars of the Airbus Aerial activities will be in the area of cargo drone services as well as providing connectivity via aerial assets.”

The US-based office in Atlanta is led by Kallman, a UAS industry expert with more than 12 years of experience including research at Georgia Tech, federal policy at FAA, commercial UAS at Airware, and advocacy with groups like the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International.

“Drones are only a piece of a much larger picture for us,” Kallman said. “Airbus Aerial brings together a variety of aerospace technologies—including drones and satellites—combines them in a common software infrastructure, and applies industry-specific analytics to deliver tailored solutions to our customers’ biggest challenges.”

Linda Blachly