Virginia Beach Development Authority Awards Grant to DroneUp LLC

August 24, 2022

Company Plans to Expand VB Headquarters, Add 510 Jobs

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Aug. 24, 2022) — The Virginia Beach Development Authority (VBDA) has approved DroneUp LLC to receive an Economic Development Investment Package (EDIP) of $800,000 in grant funding, which will be disbursed upon the company reaching established milestones related to the expansion of its local headquarters and created jobs.

Founded in Virginia Beach in 2016, DroneUp LLC is a Virginia Beach-based startup that serves a number of industries including commercial shipyards and offshore wind facilities. The company also offers on-demand drone services to commercial, military and government organizations, including public safety support and disaster management.

After experiencing significant growth and expanding far beyond Virginia Beach, DroneUp opted to keep its corporate headquarters in our city. Additionally, the company plans to expand its base of operations at 160 Newtown Road, investing $6.95 million and adding 510 new jobs to our community, with an average salary of $55,000.

“The success of DroneUp is a shining example of the opportunities that entrepreneurs can find in our city,” said Virginia Beach Mayor Robert M. “Bobby” Dyer. “This is a high-tech business that started small in our community and has now expanded across the United States and into Europe, partnering with public and private entities. We are thrilled that they have chosen to remain here and call our city home.”

“Having DroneUp commit to their continued presence and growth in Virginia Beach is a win for our city and for the current and future employees of the company,” said Taylor Adams, Virginia Beach deputy city manager and director of economic development. “The City of Virginia Beach and the VBDA have been with DroneUp since it first took flight in 2016 and we are pleased to continue this successful partnership. We wish them the best in their future endeavors, and hope that they, like all of our Virginia Beach businesses, continue to prosper.”

"DroneUp has called Virginia Beach home for over six years and we are thrilled about our upcoming expansion in this great city," said Tom Walker, founder and CEO of DroneUp. "Mayor Dyer and Governor Youngkin have been staunch proponents of technological advancement, innovation and economic stability. The addition of more than 500 jobs in the Virginia Beach community will allow us to continue on our mission of connecting communities to drone technology globally. We thank the Mayor, Governor and residents of Virginia Beach for its support to date and we look forward to bringing more opportunities."

The incentive package is part of a larger effort between the VBDA, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, Bland College and Dinwiddie County to train additional drone pilots and secure more jobs in our community, and throughout the Commonwealth. The company recently announced a multi-year agreement with Walmart, Inc. to provide drone delivery services at 153 stores by June 2024, with a goal of eventually serving all 4,000 Walmart retail stores in the United States.

About DroneUP LLC

DroneUp works with more than 20,000 drone pilots to serve its customer portfolio and is dedicated to connecting communities to drone technology globally. The company is recognized as a drone flight services innovation leader, transforming organizations with drone delivery and drone technology solutions. The company develops Software as a Service (SaaS) platforms with patented mobile application technology available at the Apple App and Google Play Stores. With technology-driven customers, DroneUp inspires the future of drone services, providing intelligent access to airspace, automation innovation, streamlined process management, operational efficiency, and a commitment to safety.

The mission of the Virginia Beach Department of Economic Development is to attract and retain national and international businesses to stimulate capital investment and create jobs. For more information, please visit