Drone delivery start-up faces court action over patents row
Manna drone operating in Oranmore Galway Photo courtesy Manna Aero

Drone delivery start-up faces court action over patents row

DRONE delivery start-up Manna is facing court action from drone systems and services provider Nordic Unmanned, in a row over patents.

The Norwegian company, which recently acquired German drone developer and manufacturer AirRobot, has filed the case in the High Court in Dublin.

It is understood to be in connection with a number of patents held by Nordic Unmanned that are due to run out within a few years, relating to a small part of the drone’s hardware.

Nordic Unmanned is believed to have acquired the patents as part of the AirRobot deal.

Manna Drones did not comment on the matter.

Founded in 2018 by Rathfarnham resident Bobby Healy, Manna has developed aviation-grade drones that fly at 80km/h and deliver goods including groceries, takeaways and medicines within a three-kilometre radius in less than three minutes.

Mr Healy, the CEO of Manna Drone Delivery, joined the 2021 Rising Stars cohort – a list by Founders forum and Silicon Valley Bank spotlighting the top ten companies with world-changing potential.

Last year, Manna Drones were issued the first ‘light UAS operator certificate’ (LUC) by the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA), following trials of drone delivery services in rural Ireland locations Oranmore and Moneygall.

The LUC is recognised in all EU Member States and provides drone operators with significant business opportunities across the single market.

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