Drone Volt has released its Q3 20 figures which showed a strong rebound in activity during this quarter, fuelled by drone deliveries. The third quarter was rich in terms of commercial announcements, with a strategic partnership tied with the US company Aquiline Drones. We anticipate this good momentum to continue in Q4.

  • Q3 20 deliveries reached 27 units, down 10% yoy and a sharp rebound from Q2 20
  • Q3 20 revenue was €1,327k, down 26% yoy
  • Q3 20 gross profit was €357k, against €630k last year
  • Backlog still at €15m, no cancellations ytd related to the pandemic
  • Concretisation of the contract with Aquiline Drones

Sharp sequential rebound in Q3

During the quarter, Drone Volt delivered a total of 27 drones and cameras, a sharp improvement over the 13 deliveries of Q1 20 and just one delivery during the second quarter. This included 22 drones (same level compared to Q3 19) and five Pensar cameras (vs eight last year).

The activity rebounded strongly in both segments to €1.3m, up 79% qoq (down 26% yoy). This was mainly been driven by a steep improvement at Drone Volt Factory where sales grew to €579k (down 17% yoy but revenue multiplied by more than 4x on a sequential basis). The third-party’s distribution also rebounded to €749k, up 30% qoq (and down 25 yoy). In terms of profitability, the gross margin reached €358k, against €630k in Q3 19 and up from €202k in Q2 20. Margins have sustained with the regain in activity despite lower training business. Drone Volt Factory’s gross profit was €212k and third-party distribution was €146k (19% gross margin).

Still healthy backlog and a good commercial momentum

Commercially, the order backlog remained strong at €15m, with no cancellations related to the pandemic since the beginning of the year. In addition, Drone Volt signed the contract with Aquline Drones for the sale under licence of its dronex in this US. We see this as very positive for Drone Volt as it should bring in at least $300k of cash inflow for Q4, topped by a down-payment of $450k to compensate for the transfer of know-how, which is favourable for FCF generation. We also estimate that revenue directly linked to this activity could reach €2m by 2021 and €3.5m by 2022.

Further improvements expected in Q4

All in all, the rebound is well engaged, and we expect this trend to continue in Q4, still supported by the above-mentioned backlog. We also anticipate a rebound in training activity in Q4 (which lagged somewhat in Q3) to support further the gross margin of the company. All in all, Q4 could reach €4.8m in revenue, implying FY20 revenue at €6.7m along with a €1.7m gross profit (€2.6m on a full-year basis).

We maintain our current estimates for the remainder of the year and we keep our Add rating on the stock.

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