Business mobility and IoT firm SOTI today announced a $20 million investment in Canada’s technology ecosystem to fund its new aerospace division, SOTI Aerospace, in the country. The company is doing so in a multi-year collaboration with Ryerson University which will support its research and development of aerial drone technology.
The new division will focus on advanced aerial drone and robotics research, research on vision systems for indoor environments, including self-learning, situational understanding, automatic location of people and objects, self-navigation, and smart avoidance. Initial applications will be focused on the medical sector and search and rescue operations.
“Ryerson University is an ideal collaborator. Together, we aim to nurture talent and entrepreneurship, and ultimately leverage technology for good. We look forward to working together to develop aerospace innovations that enhance student education while also bringing new technology to market,” said Carl Rodrigues, president and chief executive officer, SOTI.
SOTI says it will support a research chair in this field and also provide real-world experience in applied aerospace technology for Ryerson students.
“This collaboration unites leading aerospace researchers and industry experts, to accelerate the development of aerial drone research through dedicated funding. The agreement will also create new opportunities for our students to work on cutting-edge projects through enriched learning experiences, internships and scholarships,” said Mohamed Lachemi, Ryerson University president and vice-chancellor.
SOTI has made significant technology investments in Canada over the past several years. The company invested $150 million in Canada over three years, from 2015 to 2018, including a $50 million investment in research and development, more than 300 new jobs, and a new five-acre high-tech campus.