DroneSeed Funded $36M to Expand Seedling Cultivation for Wildfire Restoration


DroneSeed, a Seattle, WA-based developer of a drone data platform designed to help businesses collect, manage, and interpret drone data. As a tech-powered option to the backbreaking work of large-scale tree planting, this vital responsibility is only one tiny part of forest restoration, the foundation for which pushed to the breaking point by wildfires.

DroneSeed was funded $36 million led by Social Capital and Seven Seven Six, with new and existing investors with individual and group angel investors.

The company will use some new investment to acquire Silvaseed, a 130-year-old forestry company, to expand DroneSeed’s seed collection and seedling cultivation services.

A discoverer in climate tech and post-wildfire reforestation, DroneSeed is the only business approved by the FAA to use a fleet of heavy-lift drones to reforest after wildfires, empowering healthy forests to grow back.

DroneSeed substitutes human tree planters, who do a valuable job well but are scarcer due to the toughness and low pay of the work. Meanwhile, the scale of destruction from fires long ago passed, exceeding the capabilities of manual labor. So instead, drones can deliver dozens of seed packets or scatter invasive plants that necessarily arise in the wake of fires before trees take root with a more offensive load-out.

This procedure has innumerable advantages: It replaces unwanted and dangerous jobs of both planters and brush pilots, whose low-altitude helicopter work is difficult; the engineered seed packets hold predators like active squirrels; a truck with a line of drones can prepare more involved and cover far more ground (about 6x) than human operations; the data-heavy process is easily audit and tracking.

Jay Zaveri, a partner at Social Capital, said, Global reforestation is vital to fight against climate change. So, they’ve helped DroneSeed from the very start, given its commitment to terraform our planet for welfare. Since then, DroneSeed has estimated its effort to reforest land, found a successful pattern through carbon markets, and changed the experience of forest development for landowners.

The winning positions DroneSeed as a one-stop shop for reforestation services, including seedling cultivation, flying drone-based seeding, and financing with carbon credits. In addition, DroneSeed plans to expand further, doubling its capacity to address the grown need for reforestation assistance by the middle of next year.

The remaining part of this new funding is to return to the 2021 fire season already started, adding on more reforestation projects, generating carbon credits, and expanding its services geographically in the future.

By: K. Tagura

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