DRO, OEC & MOB: ASX drone stocks to look at as Australia eyes frozen continent

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Highlights

  • Australia plans to spend AU$804 million to enhance surveillance on the increased activities of China and Russia in Antarctica.
  • Australia, which lays claim to about 42% of Antarctica, would be using drones, helicopters and automated robotic vehicles for exploration and research on the frozen continent.
  • The application of drone technology has grown in a wide range of areas such as military, agriculture, delivery, emergency rescue and even space travel.

The Australian government has announced an investment of AU$804 million to boost its ability to survey and explore Antarctica. The 10-year funding plan would allow Australia to enhance its surveillance on the increased activities of China and Russia in the frozen tundra and surrounding waters.

Australia has territorial claims on 42% of Antarctica and would be using drones, helicopters and automated robotic vehicles for exploration and research on the frozen continent. The popularity of drones or unpiloted aircraft has soared over the last few years, given their wide range of applications in different areas such as military, agriculture, delivery, emergency rescue and even space travel.

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On this note, let us look at these three ASX drone stocks under AU$1 on investors’ radar.

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DroneShield Limited (ASX: DRO)

DroneShield is an AI-based platform provider, committed to protecting its customer base against drones, autonomous systems and other advanced threats. Its customers include military, government, intelligence community, law enforcement, airports, and critical infrastructure, globally.

DroneShield and Allen-Vanguard, a US-owned provider of Counter Improvised Explosive Devices (C-IED) solutions, recently joined hands to provide a more complete offering and collaborate on channels to market.

DroneShield’s full-year results for 2021 highlight strong revenue growth of 94% to AU$10.5 million. Also, the Company reported rapid cash receipt growth to AU$14.8 million, up by 174% over that in 2020.

READ MORE: AI firm DroneShield’s (ASX:DRO) revenue nearly doubles in CY21

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Orbital Corporation Ltd (ASX: OEC)

With offices in Australia and the United States, Orbital Corporation provides integrated propulsion systems and flight critical components for UAVs or unmanned aerial vehicles.

The Company announced half-year revenue and other income of AU$11.2 million for the six months ended 31 December 2021. The revenue was impacted by reduced military demand for tactical unmanned aircraft systems, owing to withdrawal of US military troops from Afghanistan in 2021. Moreover, delayed production of the third engine model for Insitu Inc. and implementation of cost reduction initiatives also impacted the Company’s revenue for the half year.

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Orbital UAV is advancing its existing production programs with Boeing-Insitu and progressing four new engine development programs with globally leading UAV customers, including one of Singapore’s largest defence companies, Textron Systems.

The Company highlighted that Orbital UAV remains on track to deliver revenue and other income of around AU$30 million and be net profitable at the full year.

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Mobilicom Limited (ASX: MOB)

Mobilicom provides end-to-end cybersecurity and smart solutions for drones, robotics & autonomous platforms. The Company designs, develops and delivers smart solutions majorly targeting global drone, robotics, and autonomous system manufacturers.

The Company registered significant growth in revenue, up 73% year-on-year to AU$3.6 million for the 12 months ended 31 December 2021. The performance indicates success of the Company’s end-to-end go-to-market strategy.

During the period, the Company recorded 18 new design wins, bringing total design wins across global customers to 32.

In the last quarter, the Company secured first cybersecurity contract with the Israel Ministry of Defense for an initial AU$0.27 million.

In FY22, Mobilicom’s focus remains on commercialising its world-first cybersecurity software offering, securing new Tier-1 customers, and improving revenue contribution from its existing customer base.

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