Mitsubishi Corporation (MC) and Hitachi, Ltd (Hitachi) today announce the formation of a new joint venture that will provide comprehensive remote sensing services for industrial use. The new venture, SkymatiX, Inc., will develop, manufacture and market these services based on data collected by aerial vehicles such as drones and satellites and cloud-based data analysis services. The new company, with MC and Hitachi holding 66% and 34% of shares, respectively, has started operating on December 5. MC is also pleased to announce its investment in Prodrone Co., Ltd., an industrial drone system research, development and manufacturing company located in Japan.
Within the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and a society likely to revolve more and more around the Internet of Things, or IoT, data collected using aerial systems such as drones and satellites will create opportunities for increased efficiency and accuracy as well as reduce operating costs in a variety of industries. However, it is not easy for companies to independently build and operate IT systems for collecting and analysing data. MC and Hitachi therefore see this as an opportunity to fill a need while at the same time embarking on a brand new area of business development.
The new company will therefore take full advantage of MC’s extensive sales network and business experience, Hitachi’s technological prowess in both IT and social infrastructure, and Prodrone’s drone development expertise to provide one-stop customized solutions in response to individual customer and industry needs.
More specifically, the new company plans to start offering crop-spraying and crop-growth monitoring services to the agriculture sector. A second target area for engagement is the construction industry, through the offer of real-time yard-management services that allow customers to obtain updated information on their assets and more efficiently manage their inventories by using drones to pull data from IC tags attached to different items.
Going forward, SkymatiX will seek to expand into the provision of data platform services by combining technologies available within rapidly evolving IoT technology and the sets of data it has accumulated while providing remote sensing services. This data is dubbed ‘big data’ due to their sheer size and complexity, but the company’s services will be directed at supporting advanced analysis to enable effective decision making and action in respective industries and create new value that cuts across industries.
Leveraging the rich know-how and advanced technology present in its parent companies, the new company will provide high-value solutions in response to diverse needs in remote sensing services as part of its contribution to the expansion of industry.